Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Crimes of Suburbia


There's a crime wave running rampant in my neighborhood. Thieves casing joints, robbers skulking about and, basically, a bunch of people who are just up to no good whatsoever have all become a problem. At least, that's the impression one gets after reading the e-mails that keep popping up on our subdivision's Listserv.

The first few messages were to alert residents about the dangers in our local grocery store. Apparently, a couple of women recently left their purses in the front of their shopping carts, wandered away to the next aisle to look at food and then, when they returned, their belongings were gone. Gone! Yes, malfeasance in the meat department. What is this world coming to?

I don't want to sound unsympathetic, because I know it sucks to lose your wallet and everything, but come on. You have to watch your stuff, no matter where you are. You just do. But maybe I only feel that way because my mother raised me to be incredibly protective and paranoid about my possessions. In fact, I think her three most often uttered words to me aren't actually "I love you", but "Watch my purse." (Just kidding, mom. But it's pretty darn close.)

Anyway, back to the crime wave: the next few e-mails that went around were from a man who left his wallet in his unlocked car and was then shocked, shocked! when it was stolen. I think his e-mail said "the bad people out there are targeting our neighborhood." Well, of course they're targeting our neighborhood, you genius. Because the people who live here leave their wallets in unlocked cars. It's like shooting fish in a barrel, man. At least lock the doors so the robbers have to work up a sweat by trying to throw a rock through your windshield.

After days spent reading these messages, myself and some of my friends--the other subversives in the subdivision--finally started to send each other e-mails like this one:

Subject: CITIZEN'S ALERT!

Dear Neighborhood Residents:

Last night, I left $2 million dollars in gold bullion and caviar in my front yard with a 2,000-watt spotlight shining right on it. Also, there was a neon sign flashing the words, "LOOK! AN UNATTENDED $2 MILLION DOLLARS IN GOLD BULLION AND CAVIAR! PLEASE, NO TOUCHING! WE'RE ON THE HONOR SYSTEM AROUND HERE! ALTHOUGH, RIGHT NOW WE'RE SOUND ASLEEP BECAUSE WE JUST HAD A LOT OF BENADRYL AND WHISKEY, SO WE PROBABLY WOULDN'T HEAR YOU IF YOU HAPPENED TO LOAD IT UP IN YOUR TRUCK AND SPEED IT AWAY TO YOUR SECRET LAIR!!! BUT PLEASE, DON'T DO WHAT I JUST SUGGESTED RIGHT THEN, OK? THAT PART ABOUT THE LOADING IT UP? THANX!!!"

And believe it or not, fellow residents, this morning when I woke up, I was shocked, shocked! to see that my gold bullion was gone!!! (Not the caviar, though, because it had kind of turned rotten overnight, making it too much of a risk. Even for those thuggy types.) So, beware, all people of this subdivision! There are criminal masterminds in our area using all of their high-tech tricks--like the power of sight--to rip off us innocent people. NO ONE IS SAFE!! I REPEAT, NO ONE!! PLEASE, BE ON HIGH ALERT!

Signed,
Your neighbor with the runny caviar and neon sign in his yard


Actually, after two weeks of sending obnoxious e-mails like that one around the neighborhood, it's probably a good thing that I'm on high alert.











16 comments:

hokgardner said...

I laughed out loud and then read it to my husband, who also laughed out loud.

A year or so ago we had a series of break-ins here in our hood, which prompted lots of messages on our listserv. The discussion, predictably, descended into accusations of racism and gentrification by the "carpetbaggers" who have moved in over the past few years.

Ann's Rants said...

Yes, the listserv is endlessly entertaining.

No joke, last week a dude threatened to start killing cats on his property. Dude? Evidence Item A.

MadMad said...

Wait, wait, wait. Your neighborhood has a listserv?! You're gonna get stuck with running that, next, after the PTO gig's up! Watch out!

bernthis said...

In L.A. people here are...ahem...cough..cough. much more..ahem,...in tune to that sort of stuff...cough, cough and rarely finds themselves a victim of any...snort..type of crime

Melissa said...

Sounds like our 'hood as well. Totally cracks me up.

Marinka said...

Yes, very funny. But a friendly reminder, people--do not store your caviar on the lawn in direct sunlight. Not just because it'll get stolen, but because it'll spoil and taste NotGood and you'll die.

And I love the image of MiniWendi keeping an eye on her mother's purse. "Get away, wobber!"

Heather, Queen of Shake Shake said...

Crap, after reading this, I'm worried about my potted geraniums on the front porch that are not locked or tied down. Any thief who'll steal a wallet in an unlocked car wouldn't stop at potted plants either!

Coffee with Cathy said...

In the fall my neighborhood always suffers from Pumpkin Kidnapping -- I always consider putting up a sign that reads, "If you need a pumpkin I will go buy one for you. Just please leave mine alone."

Domestic Goddess (In Training) said...

How much of your home owners association fees go to the webmasters for the listserv? That is the real crime!

Cat said...

Should I not leave my cash under the windshield wiper blade while I run into the liquor store wearing my diamond tiara and speaking loudly on my cell phone about how I'll be home alone all weekend with the delivery of electronics and antique septors and the lock on my back door at 555 Stupid Ass Lane is broken and my guard dog was just run over last week?

I have got to start being more careful. Someone might steal my phone.

the mama bird diaries said...

It's such a headache when your gold bullion is stolen.

Lisa (Jonny's Mommy) said...

I know! Leave your car unlocked and hello! It's gonna happen people. Walk away from your purse and you have only you to blame! I hope you really sent that letter because seriously, that was funnY!

Judy Merrill Larsen said...

Damn, my crappy neighborhood doesn't even have a list-serve. We do, however, have nitwits who get their ipods, cell phones, bikes, cds, stolen out of their unlocked cars/garages. I know about this from the local crime reports listed in the weekly paper, kind of a retro list-serve, I guess, and of course we all read the weekly paper to see which local crank is off on a rant in the letters to the editor section (and also to see if we can identify any of the folks listed in the crime reports!).

Inna said...

So you weren't happy I left you the caviar???

Nikki Loftin said...

The more I read your blog, the more I am convinced we are twins, separated at birth, living parallel lives a few miles from each other... only you're really funny and slightly more alcoholic than me.
My neighborhood just pitched in to buy a Neighborhood Watch sign. Why? Because, someday, there might be a crime committed here. Not yet, but someday.
That sign is begging me, every day... "Come on, Nikki. Smash a mailbox. Egg a car. Something! Justify their paranoia...."

What kind of book are ya writin'?

Nancy said...

"Signed,
Your neighbor with the runny caviar and neon sign in his yard"

The above quote was the best part. Blame the letter on a guy, that'll throw them off!