…145 of the best photos from among over 250 that I took. Why not post all of them?
Some were duplicates, some were fuzzy or blurred, some were random shots of nothing (my camera shutter clicked while pointed at the ground), and some were personal photos of me with friends (other judges and cops) whose photos posted on this gallery would not be appropriate.
Camera? What’s that? Yeah, I actually use a real camera — you know, one of those things with a lens and digital imagery system designed to take photographs.
Why not take photos with my smartphone? Everyone assumes that everyone has one of those wallet-suckers. Not me. I really don’t find those things to be useful in daily life, and the exorbitant fees charged for data plans make rich companies richer. I will not fuel the laughter of the zillion-dollar corporate execs as they are paid ghastly sums at our expense for their wasteful lifestyles.
I enjoyed the professional camaraderie among the officers who entered this competition and their inclusion and care for me during the event. Having been a judge or lead judge for 15 years now, I know most of the regulars who compete. While their brotherhood is tight, they are friendly enough with the rest of us such that we feel, at least for a little while, that we are liked and accepted as part of the fabric of what makes this a successful event.
One thing that I noticed in particular at this event was the cop-boot-clones. That is, the vast majority of motor officers from units in counties and cities in Northern Virginia all have adopted wearing dress instep Dehner boots with lug soles. Almost all of them.
And on top of that, they all have adopted an interesting (to this Bootman, anyway) technique of polishing the toe cap to a mirror finish. So shiny that in this photo to the right, you can actually see the image of the cop in his helmet in the reflection off the boot.
I asked a cop about that polishing technique, and he kinda grumbled, “the sarge asks us to do that for this event and when doing escorts. He says it makes us look more professional. Actually, it’s a pain in the ass.” That is about the same thing I have heard over the years from cops who really don’t like to spend time polishing and caring for boots. (Typical of most guys, including myself. We have better things to do with our time than polish boots.)
One might think that the photo shown above was a random-good- and lucky shot. But it wasn’t. Boot after Dehner boot of the NoVa cops all demonstrated that technique — a brightly polished, mirror-finish toe cap. The rest of the boot was generally clean, in good shape, and moderately shiny, but the toe cap was brilliant. I tell ya, those boots over tight breeches were a distraction for this Bootman. 🙂
There were other boots visible among contestants from other units that were not as well-maintained. In fact, some boots have seen much better days, with some sagging badly at the ankles, worn soles, and shafts damaged by exposure to hot exhaust pipes.
There are eight galleries in the latest display:
- Cops riding into the opening ceremony
- Cops riding out of the opening ceremony
- Cops riding in the competition
- Cops at the competition
- How to lift a dropped heavyweight motorcycle
- Dress instep Dehner Boots
- Other boots on cops
- Boots that have seen better days
Come visit this new gallery and check out the scenery by clicking on the image below (it is a link to the main gallery index page).