“Do Over”


Greetings once again are extended to my gentle readers to the world of “The Gumshoe”.  It has been several weeks since my last posting as I have had to deal with pressing personal family matters and my creative writing “juices” seemed to have hit a “dry spell”.

My writing hiatus got me thinking about “Do Over’s”. In plenty of children’s games they allow their fellow playmates a “Do Over”; sort of like, “Kings X” to start over again to get it right.

How often in my gypsy police career would I have wanted the magical power of calling a “Do Over”. The sad facts that in police work the responding officer, deputy, assigned case detective, special agent has to do it right the first time and every time without the luxury of “Do Over” or “King’s X”.

I think it is funny that both lawyers and doctors have a “practice” in their chosen professions while law enforcement officers don’t. Wouldn’t you want a doctor not to “practice” on you nor would you hire a lawyer to try your case as “practice”? Does this term “practice” give them an escape clause if things go wrong? Maybe it is just their professional “Do Over” in disguise?

Enforcing the laws of the land is not a “practice”, it is a sworn oath taken by law enforcement professionals to uphold the laws of the land as determined by the U.S. Constitution and other legislative laws on the books. This is pretty “heady” stuff for a young officer working a street beat.

yodaThe police slang was “all codes and all roads” and “you have a badge on your chest and the power to arrest”. I never heard the term, go out and “practice” being a street cop. This brings to my mind the character “Yoda” from Star Wars when he gave this admonishment to Luke Skywalker: “There is no try, just do!” This wisdom from this midget (height challenged to be PC) green creature with the pointy ears and big eyes is the mantra for all new police recruits as they face the unknown’s on the responding end of the 911 calls.

I was very fortunate and indeed blessed by God that the calls and cases that I worked did not have me regret not having a “Do Over”. I always learned just to “Do Better” each and every time without “practice”. Now if I only could have a “Do Over” in my own personal life!

Until next time folks, this is the Gumshoe signing off for now. Please love the ones who love you.


Danny Pitocco
Danny Pitocco
RETIRED (as a Detective with the Snohomish County Sherriff’s Department, Washington State), Danny has over forty years of law enforcement experience across city, county, state and federal levels of government, including service as a Special Agent for the DEA, US Department of Justice. He’s a decorated law enforcement veteran, and recipient of the "Detective of the Year" award for Snohomish County, Danny is a certified composite artist and has testified as an expert witness in the field of narcotics and modus operandi of particular crimes in state and federal courts in California, and has given testimony before federal grand juries. Danny served four years of active duty in the US Marine Corps and loves Jesus as his personal savior.

SOLD OUT! JOIN OUR WAITING LIST! It's not a virtual event. It's not a conference. It's not a seminar, a meeting, or a symposium. It's not about attracting a big crowd. It's not about making a profit, but rather about making a real difference. LEARN MORE HERE



    • Thank you Sandy for your very gracious comment. My faith is only through God’s grace who works through my family and friends such as you! Laughter is the light of the soul?

  1. Danny, welcome back! I’ve missed your adventures in street guarding and people protecting. I’ve often thought about the parts of my life that I would love to do over. Then I realize that there are no guarantees I’d do any better once it was over. I’m still the same flawed person and would ‘practice’ again with errors. Here’s the thing though – like you said.,”I always learned just to “Do Better” each and every time ” We don’t get a do over but we can get a “do better the next time”. Knowing we get one chance at life can be paralyzing. Realizing we get a new day every 24 hours is libertating. We can tell ourselves, if at first you don’t succeed, quit while you’re ahead. OR If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again. Life is a contact sport. I’m with you – let’s just keep trying. We can’t fail as long as we get up for the next round.

    • Thanks Jane for your pithy comments. We Christians know that our Savior grants us “do over’s” through His grace when we transgress.

    • Grace – of all the words in the Christian language, that one is one of the most powerful and, come to think of it, versatile because it covers a lot of territory.

  2. Very good, Danny. Most of us (non doctors or lawyers) don’t get do overs or Kings X s. Well interesting enough they don’t get do overs in their personal lives either. I’ve known a lot of doctors and lawyers, many divorced and many multiple times. Many on alcohol and or drugs.

    Even though I was just a lowly hotelier, there were many times I wished that I could have either a do over or a do better. But sadly those were never available, even when lives were at stake.