batman fights crime on the burlington streets

by matthaverty

Monday, October 31st: The city streets are crowded for the holiday, even with the cold. Crime is rampant in this god forsaken city. Underaged drinkers are everywhere, just waiting to buy their rum and cokes and dirty Shirleys. But I’m there too, watching. Three years of nights have turned me into a nocturnal animal. I have to pick my targets carefully…it’s a big city and also I didn’t really get invited to many parties. Fear is a tool. The college kids ages eighteen to twenty think I’m hiding in the shadows…but I am the shadows. 

I went as Batman this year to do what needs to be done. This year, Batman will not be coming for bank robbers, supervillains or the Burlington Vermont homeless population. I’m out for the real threat to our city…underaged drinking. No one in the city appreciates me. The bartender at Three Needs kept kicking me out of the line when I’d take people’s ID and ask them what their zip code was in my Batman voice. I’m the hero Burlington Vermont needs…not the one it wants. I guess you could say I’m the fourth need…vengeance. 

This Halloweekend was the worst it’s been. Baby-faced freshmen were stumbling around all over the place, constantly asking people to fight them and insisting that they actually weren’t that drunk. I was taking out some small fry sophomores trying to get into the OP with their older brother’s ID when I noticed an inscription written on one of the fakes I confiscated. It read: “Riddle me this Batman, what’s black and blue and dead all over? You. Where do you think these kids are getting these ID’s? You’ve got a cat’s eye but don’t jump the gun. My next clue is where you should run.” 

I should have known that the Riddler was behind these ID’s. I knew that if I really wanted to address the crime problem in Burlington I was going to have to cut it off at the root, by beating the shit out of the dude selling college kids fake IDs. I hopped in my Green Subaru Outback/Batmobile and drove to where the Riddler wanted me to go: the Catamount statue near the Davis center. It was obvious. Eye of a cat, don’t jump the gun, he was clearly talking about Catgunning on the statue, a common practice of underage drinkers. I knew that had to be his secret hiding place…or at least the location of the next clue. 

When I got there, I saw a crime scene waiting for me. Some Junior who turned twenty one in the spring had gotten a little trigger happy and threw up all over the catamount statue so the campus police were on the scene. I had to be sneaky, the UVM police officers have big strong hands and I worry that if they grabbed me too forcefully I’d be very scared. 

Using some marajuana I confiscated from a dealer and not a licensed dispensary, I made a makeshift smoke bomb and threw it at the statue. It was indica so the police got the munchies and ran to the nearest vending machine to buy baked lays and flavored water. I seized the opportunity and investigated the statue. 

After searching the scene, carefully to avoid the burrito chunks, I discovered a yellow dot of spray paint located directly on the statue’s anus. This had to be the entrance to the lair. Sure enough when I delicately placed my satin gloved finger on the dot, the statue lowered into the ground, leading to a system of caves. Deep in the bowels of UVM campus there’s a winding system of tunnels. One of the remnants of this system is the Davis tunnel but the rest was closed off. Whoever had access to this hidden labyrinth must be a genius because the research it would have taken to find this was probably at least an hour and forty five minutes. 

I wandered around the tunnels until I saw a slickly green light, emanating in the distance. I walked towards it and walked into a room with countless computer screens and a singular ID resting on a table. I picked it up. “Edward Nygma. Vernon Connecticut. 06066. Born April 13th 1999.” I ran my black light over it. It was real. The man on the ID looked so familiar…and that’s when I remembered. Edward Nygma is in one of my classes. Drugs and Addiction ENGS 168. Some fifth year senior. Bookish type, kept talking about legalizing all drugs: the worst crime of all. That’s when the screen came on…and I saw it. A giant countdown reading “1 HOUR UNTIL THE LEGAL DRINKING AGE IS LOWERED TO 18.” 

Categories: matt haverty, news, nov 16