Warrior Love


I’m single again, for the 21st time, and I think it’s all the fault of what I experienced in my past. Let me speak of why.

We’ve all been told at some point in our lives, “I’ve got your back” by someone who was important to us. I lived a life where this was a very real thing and not just words. I experienced what it meant for someone to “Have my back” more than once and sometimes when lives depended on the outcome.


Eight of us gather in the darkness planning our raid. To bust down another door – to yell out orders and force submission – to serve a Search Warrant and do our job – this is why we get paid the big bucks but to tell the truth I’d have done it for free. Decisions were made about where to take the injured, just in case. A well choreographed dance was about to take place. Surprise and threatened violence waits on both sides of the crack house door.

“A block out” the driver yells out. Time to focus, to see everything, to have the eyes of a hawk. Time to be brave, to lose the sense of self and feel part of the team. Time to think of nothing but what is about to happen. Time to control the chaos that we are about to create.


Someone slides the van door open while we travel down the dark street. A blast of frozen air slaps my face into further awareness. I am alive and ready for what’s to come. Sometimes having PTSD is a good thing and in moments like this I was calm and ready. The Fight or Flight response was built into me and I was ready for this fight. I had been here before, many times. For some reason unknown to me the more dangerous and desperate things became the calmer I was able to be, a reversed response. This served me well throughout my Law Enforcement career.

This was a possible bad one. The informant who set up the deal, by buying cocaine from one of the Perps, knew little other than, “These were some bad motherfuckers outta Detroit and everybody’s gotta gun, maybe a AK-47 too.” The informant didn’t know the layout of the house or where anybody might be when we entered.


“Sheriff’s Department – Search Warrant – Open the Door!”

We fall in line behind the man with the ram who is about to destroy the door, everyone in their assigned place. My hand on the shoulder of my Brother in front of me. I Loved that moment of anticipation, commitment and bonding.

We were about to be forged in the fire once again.

The door and jamb is splintered and we enter with steely determination. I am one of the first through the door and begin my search for the bad guys. I find one and begin to take him to the floor for cuffing when the fight breaks out. I can still remember fighting this thug and looking up to see my Brother covering me, standing over me, gun in hand ordering the other thugs back.

In my life I’ve know what it means when someone has my back in a real way and I haven’t experienced it since I left Police work. I search for a woman that would love me like this and in the same moment know I’ll never find her…

Warrior Love




© 2015 – 2016, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.

The woman with a dead dog in her fridge

A New Category – Women

What I’m about to tell you happened many years ago and doesn’t have anything to do with Police work, PTSD or wild places. It’s just one story of many in my relationships with women and the beginning of my dating experience. I found myself divorced in southern Utah and decided to make the most of it.

I love Women.

Allow me to introduce the woman with a dead dog in her Fridge.

Anasazi Ridge 018 (2)

I had finished a motorcycle ride through Zion National park and dropped into the local coffee bar to warm up before heading up the hill and home.

She sat with her back to the door as I entered. I first noticed her mane of thick blond hair and then her face. She was one of those women that would always be outwardly beautiful – a perfect mix of chin, nose and mouth. She was fit and trim and had a beautiful hard body.


I recognized her as out of my league and walked past with a friendly nod and an “Evening Ma’am” as I paid the Barista for a cup and poured my own coffee. I felt her eyes on me and knew she had been watching me since I entered the joint. Sometimes people stare at me and I’m use to that, I’m 6 foot 2 inches tall and in full motorcycle riding gear I resemble something out of a Mad Max movie. My hair is sometimes crazy and I often don’t give a shit.

From across the room she asked, “Are you an Angel?” She was bold, which attracted me even more. I wouldn’t know until later that she really thought I was an Angel.

I turned and answered, “No, but my name is Michael.” I smiled, she smiled and invited me to her table. I sat with her and stared into the most incredible eyes I had ever seen. Every possible color seemed represented and screaming out for it’s own attention. I don’t remember all that we talked about but I pegged her as what I call a Magic Rock woman. She had unconventional beliefs in past lives and UFO’s.


After my coffee was gone I scratched out my number on the back of a book of  matches and asked her to call me. She kissed me before I left and I thought that was a weird little page in my life book, intensely romantic. The ego boost was an electrical charge all it’s own. I smiled inside my helmet riding the dark road home.

The very next day she called and wanted to meet me at a different coffee shop. I was out riding my motorcycle again and was close to where she was. We met  – there was a gravity that pulled us together – we talked – time passed – or did it – I couldn’t tell – I was intoxicated by her – snuggled together under the Utah sun – her hands on me – her laughter filled my ears.

I escorted her to the restroom, off the courtyard.

I have a part of me that is animal, pure absolute animal, without language, chained to the ground.

When she was back I explained it to her this way. “I will never know if we have a possibility unless and until I sniff the nape of your neck.” She turned in that instant and offered me her throat, I felt her tremble. She then said we were past life lovers and was surprised I couldn’t remember all that had happened in our past. Before this coffee date was over she would tell me she already loved me.


Later we had another date when she met me in the park and brought Pete her dog who looked exactly like Benji (the movie dog). He was cute, energetic and playful and I liked him from the beginning. The woman and I seemed to have a really intense connection but something was wrong. One sunny morning I was to find out what.

She invited me to her condo for breakfast. I arrived exactly on time bearing a gift of fruit preserves and a pocket full of condoms.


She answered…

Over night she had suffered an emotional break and it was immediately apparent to me. She was naked from the waist down, only wearing a sweat stained T-shirt. Her eyes were smeared into a raccoon comedy of tears and mascara. Behind her in the living room I could see a haystack pile of her belongings, leather coats and pants, shirts and jewelry, wigs and photographs. She collapsed into my chest and sobbed and I held her in the doorway for nearly an hour.

I finally convinced her to come in with me, to just sit on the couch, to rest. She agreed and began to tell me a long and rather sad story of having been a Mormon trophy wife until age and gravity diminished her beauty enough for her husband to kick her to the curb. She showed me her modeling portfolio filled with beautiful nude pictures of her in younger days.

She told me she had been arrested the day before for threatening a hotel clerk.

Anasazi Ridge 014 (2)

Things calmed down and I went into the kitchen to get a drink of water. She called after me and said there was cold water in the fridge.

I opened the refrigerator door and there, on a thanksgiving silver platter, was Pete – dead as a door nail. You probably guessed that ending based on the chapter title. I flashed to a Betty Davis movie and a head tumbling down the stairway. I’ll never look at a silver platter the same, the image game plays in my mind, snapshots taken and memories made. In that very moment I thought, almost out loud, how strange my life continues to be. Intense and different.

“Sweetie, what happened to Pete” I asked from the kitchen.

She told me Pete had been hit by a car and killed the night before and she didn’t know what to do with him. Her best idea was to put him in the fridge. I knew Pete’s death was the straw that broke the camel’s back for this woman, one more thing she didn’t need. Pete meant the world to her and was her only companion.


I went into Ex Cop mode and got her to agree for me to contact the Police for help. They came out and I briefed them with all I knew about her. I didn’t even know her last name or any of her family.

I lost track of her after that. Later she called and I asked where she’d been and she said “locked up.” I asked what for and her response, which still rings in my ears was, “For being crazy silly.”

Weeks later she called to let me know she had memorized my cellular number in case she was ever locked up again.

She was not the woman of my Dream…

PS: Maybe there is one lesson to be learned in this. Some women can smell the Protector in us. I think this woman was teetering on the brink of her psychotic break and searching for an Angel to save her when I happened to walk into her life. She collapsed when she found me and knew she was safe. I was glad to be her Angel when she needed one the most.

The price and reward of being the Protector…



© 2015, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.

Rookies can be Dangerous – Part I


I was an FTO or Field Training Officer for most of the time I spent in Uniform Patrol. I’m more proud of that than a lot of my later accomplishments. I tried hard to train good Police Officers and to shit-can bad ones. I worked to instill in them Valor and Honor and Truth, to test them. To teach them to survive, to be Brave, and to always Win. I taught them to be Warriors and Keepers of the Peace. I was tough but fair, critical. In the same moment I was their Mentor, Big Brother or Father.

Sometimes I was their Ending…


8:30 a.m.

We’re just out of the Barn and for a change the Midnight shift left us no complaints or radio runs waiting. I grabbed a coffee from the corner Seven Eleven store and jump back into the passenger seat of the cruiser. I tell the rookie to head North.

A heavy drizzle, more like a dense fog, had draped over the neighborhood of tightly packed two story cracker box houses. I peer between the houses, into the backyards on the next block, looking for trouble. Glowing halos surround street lights like silver moons. At the wheel of the black and white Chevrolet Caprice was my newest rookie. I still hadn’t managed to remember his first name. Cub would have to do for now.


I had told the rookie to turn down this side street because of some recent home break-ins. It was early enough that the good citizens had left for work and the bad ones were left behind, with me and the Cub, in the gray haze.

I look down the street and see a car trying to short block (avoid contact with) us. He made the turn suddenly and without signalling. It all seemed spooky and weird for the time and place.

“Cub, catch up to that deuce and a quarter before it gets to Ecorse Road if you don’t mind.”

And he did. I think, I really mean this, that many recruits had never driven a V8 engine in their lives. Squealing tires and screeching brakes lurch us towards the target vehicle. We come up behind it right before Ecorse Road, a perfect place for the traffic stop.


“Light him up Cub but I’m crossing over and making primary contact.”

I made first contact with the driver and smelled his fear and tension downwind, I shit you not. He already had his hands on the wheel, more weirdness.

“Let me see your driver’s license, registration and proof of insurance.”

“Deputy my license is suspended and I don’t have it on me.” Good enough for me to place him under arrest, for the moment. I could release him later with a misdemeanor citation if I wanted to. I needed time to figure out what’s going on and me and the Cub and the nervous dude will all be safer if nervous dude is cuffed and stuffed in the back of the cruiser, at least for the time being.


I order the driver from the vehicle, patted him down, cuffed him and placed him in the rear of the cruiser. Once that was done I told the Recruit this:

“Cub, something ain’t right here. I want you to search the car. Find me something and find some ID. This might be our break in guy. Get to work.”

I get back in the passenger seat, slide the Plexiglas partition window open, and read the driver his rights. He waives his rights and answers some preliminary  questions. He said that he was lost and was trying to find his way home in the fog (buzz). I ask his name “James Smith, no middle name” (buzz). I asked his date of birth, twice about a minute apart. Neither answer was the same (buzz). When I asked how old he was the answer didn’t match either date of birth he had given (buzz).


While I’m having fun being the human polygraph machine and figuring out how many lies one little nervous dude could tell the rookie comes up to the door, twiddling his thumbs. I crack the window and asked him “You didn’t find nothing in the car and no ID?” He answered that he didn’t find “anything of evidentiary value.”

“Search it again.”


I went back to questioning the driver and he continued to lie. He had finally agreed on what his name and date of birth was but couldn’t remember his home address (buzz). I asked what his Zodiac sign was for the date of birth he finally picked, he guessed wrong (buzz).

The rookie comes back to the window. “Nothing Boss. Couldn’t find nothing.”

“Search it again.”

Because this guy had lied so much and raised so much suspicion within me I made a rare decision. I placed him under arrest for the driving while license suspended (misdemeanor violation) and would take him to the jail just to get a better ID. I’d have to deal with a possibly pissed off Sergeant in the County jail for bringing in a traffic offender but  I needed some photos and prints and time to investigate this guy further.

The rookie comes back from his third search of the same vehicle empty handed. I had him fill out the impound sheet and make the wrecker request to tow the car to the impound lot.

The wrecker driver, who I’d known for years makes the scene. “Hey Deputy Mike, How have you been?”

“Just pissing in the wind Tom, just pissing in the wind.” We laugh and he offers up his Beechnut chew pouch. I declined.

The rookie, me and the nervous dude start towards the County Jail, some fifteen minutes drive away from our location. The nervous dude lied all the way.


“Frank 20 copy – J&J’s Towing is requesting that Deputy Fulcher call them Immediately” came over the main police radio.

BUZZZ – More strangeness.

My best informants were Hookers (they see everything – their lives depend on it), Cab Drivers, Wrecker drivers, Trash-Men, Pizza delivery guys (they work the same streets for different reasons but it’s the same streets), and strippers, (well I love strippers – I find them to be strong women – warrior like – and they know lots). A lot of my cases were made with the help of these people. I took real bad people off the streets because of them. Cases wouldn’t have been made without their help.

Tom, the wrecker driver, was one of these people. Maybe contact would be a better description of our relationship. I didn’t pay him anything or get him out of tickets. He just called me when he saw things, he was a good citizen and he trusted me with the information.


I had one of the first flip open Motorola Cellular phones and had J&J’s Towing dialed in already.

“Hey Tom, whats up?”

“Deputy Mike have you made it to the jail yet?”

“Not yet Tom, why?”

“Well you better just turn around and come back to the impound lot, trust me it’s important.” And I did trust Tom, I told the rookie to drive us to the impound lot.


When we got there the Buick was still hanging from the tow straps of the wrecker. Tom walked up and motioned me towards the rear and pointed behind the driver’s seat, at the foot well.  Right there was the biggest and shiniest .44 Magnum six inch barreled handgun I had ever laid eyes on. How could or did the rookie miss this monster? It must have slipped out when the vehicle was towed but shit. My head was spinning – I was a hard task master when it came to Officer Safety. I patrolled the darkest parts of the worst neighborhoods I could find. I looked for trouble, it was my job. Officer Safety skills were a must.

Tom walked away as I whistled up my recruit. “Cub we got problems, real fucking problems.” I motioned him to look behind the driver’s seat. “You’re gonna write the report that explains all of this. Why Tom is now in our chain of evidence. Why you missed this weapon. I almost let this guy go back to his car and that gun.”

“But Cub we got more trouble than that. I want your promise to me right now, right here – your oath – that if any of your dumb ass shit gets me killed…,” – I took the time to poke him in the chest, hard, each time I said YOU – “That YOU tell my kids that it was YOU and not me that fucked up and got me killed. YOU gotta make this promise to me now or I can’t keep training YOU.”

A weak and feeble “I promise” escaped his clenched teeth.

The very next day the Recruit came in and pulled his own pin, he quit.


© 2015, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.

Wild Places

I am a fortunate man.


For most of my days I had Uncle Frank as a role model. He was one of those rare men that lead by example, not words. Uncle Frank died about a month ago.

Unk, as I called him, was a strong man with thick hairy forearms and a shining face always wearing a real smile. He was a man who cared for many and many cared for him. He touched lives quietly and without ego. I Loved him more than any man I have ever known.


Unk walked the walk. He gave when he had nothing left to give. He taught me how to be strong without raising my fists. He showed me that Words and Actions matter and that we should all try to be better People. He did this without thumping his Bible or preaching, without Hate or Bigotry. He taught me the Art of Kindness and how to be kind to those that cannot return it. I witnessed what he gained in the giving, the gift of the gift.

Unk showed me a Path into the Wild Places where I remain today, healed and better because of my connection to the Earth. Grounded to safe places, my untamed Sanctuaries.


I’ve decided that the second half of this book, or whatever it will become, will be about what I learned in the Wild Places and how I was healed there. I can only hope it helps someone, anyone, to a better Path. I’ll still write the blood and guts Cop shit but my story is more than that. I AM a Better Me because of Unk and Wild Places.

I just returned from a long road trip to visit these camps and dug through the ashes I left there years ago. I wanted to remember how and what changed me.


To Perch:

As the edges of gray find me I roll out of my sleeping bag barefooted on the damp red sand, wiggly toed and alive. I had finished another glorious night sleeping in the open, no roof of tin or tent to block my wide eyed view into the center of the Milky Way. The evening before I had laid out my coffee pot and stove to be next to me and ready to be lit. Within minutes I had my hands wrapped around a warm mug of cowboy coffee, black and strong. I clutch it closer to my chest to draw in all the heat it could give up. The purple light pushed against the absolute blackness as Night begins to give to Day.


In the red rocks above my camp I notice an unkindness of Ravens, maybe a half-dozen in number. They have staked out their perches of high rock. What do they watch for, what do they wait for? I begin to wonder and decide to solve the riddle through experimentation.

I climb atop the nearest big rock wanting to witness what they would witness. A Raven hopped away with a cantankerous caw expressing his displeasure with my trespass.


I Perch, my feet shoulder wide as I squat on my heels. Long shafts of yellow sunlight pushes across the landscape, behind the Joshua tree and into the narrow canyon. My back against the cool red sandstone, my face to the West.

For some dark shadows are reminders of places of ambush, of danger and death, of threat and trouble.

I began to see not the advancing light but instead the vanquished shadows. I watch as they were beaten back and away from me, in retreat they crawled into smaller pools. I celebrate the death of the gloom with a caw into the morning sky and a thump of my chest with a fist.

The Ravens take flight and circle over me.


I watch as the Raven soars with his lifelong mate, locked in their sky dance. Just the two of them, flirtatious and weightless, teasing and tempting while renewing their affection. Inky black against blue sky. A natural commitment grows between them.

I witness Love.

I am thankful for the lessons of Unk and the Raven






© 2015 – 2016, Michael Fulcher. All rights reserved.