SHREVEPORT, LA. – On Monday, many Shreveport residents were mildly shocked to discover their trash had not been picked up at its normally scheduled time. “I’ve stood watch here for 8 hours and it’s almost midnight. My garbage better get picked up before Tuesday or there will be hell to pay, Mayor Tyler. I’ve posted on the 15 different neighborhood pages about it, so you could say I’m highly inconvenienced by the whole thing,” says Broadmoor resident Steve Huffy. “I was going to vote for her on election day, but I’m a single-issue voter, and that issue is you better pick up my damn trash.”
While occasional failures to provide basic services has become a Shreveport staple, the city says this time there was more at play. According to officials, a man clad in an Adrian Perkins’ t-shirt persuaded numerous sanitation employees to call in sick and miss work in an effort to hurt Mayor Tyler’s re-election chances.”We are not suggesting Adrian Perkins’ involvement. We are saying it was politically motivated by a man wearing an Adrian Perkins t-shirt,” Shreveport Director of Communications Africa Price said reading a press release prepared by Chief Administrative Officer Brian Crawford that quoted Mayor Tyler. “He is trying to get Adrian elected, because he was promised a position as Trash Czar. That’s just a guess, though. The city is not implying that we think that’s what occurred.”
Sanitation employees suggest they felt compelled to take off work as the man said they should.
“The guy was real official-like. I’ve got a family, but you tell me what I’m supposed to do when a guy in a beautiful, white, Hanes Adrian Perkins shirt like that says you need to call in sick. Sorry to my kids, looks like you’re eating grass this week,” said sanitation worker George Durf. “I don’t know anything about Adrian Perkins, he just kind of materialized in Shreveport one day, but if I get a day off work, you won’t hear me complaining.”
Mr. Durf was fired later that day.
The persuasive shirt guy did not stop at sanitation, as Wednesday saw the entire population of Shreveport call in sick. “It’s not really my fault that I missed work,” Tim Billingsley tells The Crayfish before heading to his deer camp. “Adrian Perkins basically made me do it, so blame him.”
This sort of political jockeying is no surprise, especially as the election enters its final stretch before ballots are cast, where both candidates compete to be slightly more passive aggressive than their opponent. “I can’t even watch Wheel without 15 campaign commercials. If Adrian wants to mow grass so damn much, come mow mine, I just want to see who wins the prize puzzle. The guy can only afford a push mower anyway, I want my mayor to at least have a riding mower,” says Shreveport native Stephanie Tapps. “This big-brained know-it-all [Perkins] is promising high-speed internet and can’t even get a mower manufactured in the last decade.”
City officials say they know who the mystery man is, but warn he is still at large. “This is a significant event for Shreveport. This is the first coup de chemise in the city’s illustrious history,” CAO Brian Crawford says. “[City leadership] asks the public to remain vigilant while we seek the perpetrator. If someone tells you to call in sick, do your best to resist the urge to take off work no matter how high-quality his t-shirt may be.”
According to several witnesses, the cotton-bound suspect was last seen entering Lee O. Savage’s re-abandoned campaign headquarters on Youree Drive.
The Crayfish will update the public as more information becomes available.