This blog is welcome to anyone and everyone, regardless of race, class, gender, sexual orientation, or political affiliation. Unless you don't like writing short stories or smelling bear. Or if you voted for the other guy. Also, I don't really like it when you leave up the toilet seat, so could you stop doing that? Muchas, muchas gracias.

Friday, December 15, 2006

Stop, Thief!

Today I was a little disheartened because I learned that thieves had broken into one of my bookstores for the second time in a couple of months. This time, they shattered a window and ran off with some money. I was thinking about this in the afternoon, on my way back from the bank. Some people have and some people don't have, but right now we're all supposed to give -- is this why thieves take?

I'd made it about a block when I saw a man wearing a wool hat run out of this great little store with something under his arm. He was being chased by an employee. They began arguing on the street -- the employee was asking for the item back, and the theif wouldn't return it. As I approached them, I realized that nobody else was paying attention to this altercation. I decided to step in. I looked the thief straight in the eye and said, "Are you a thief"?

Lots of things were going through my head. Like, why should we stand for this kind of behavior? In our own neighborhoods, why don't we band together, help each other out, say NO to people who take things that don't belong to them? If we all said, Not in my neighborhood, if we, as reasonable human beings and good people made it clear we won't stand for bad behavior, maybe the thieves would go away.

This thief became increasingly nervous when he saw that there was not just one, but two people watching and following and working together. As we passed by a small Victorian, a young guy opened his front door and asked what was going on. "That man with the wool hat is a thief!" I said. He pulled his hat down over his ears and picked up his pace a little. Then I noticed something: a few other people were following, too. One man was calling the police on his cell phone. We tailed the thief for a few blocks, then I had to veer off and return to work. Ten minutes later, a cop car cruised by.

I guess what I'm saying is this: if we stand up for what is right, maybe we can make our neighborhoods better for everyone. There's many, many more people who are kind and just than there are people who'll take advantage. So don't stand for it!


Blogger matty03 said...

Wow -- Ing, did that really happen. I couldn't stop reading. I agree, but it scares me cuz --- like those folks at the free clinic once told me -- some of these people who only want to take (especially in our neighborhoods) will stop at nothing to take it. ...using such things as blunt objects, sharp objects or guns.

Be careful!

Stand up. Speak out.

But, if you get hurt that means I have to go track down the evil theif and kick his ass. I think I can do it but I don't want to see my beautiful Ing getting hurt for a loaf of bread or some such!

Xmas is almost here!

Sleep over! Chocolate soup! Presents! Pretty lights! ...and, maybe, just maybe! ...we can go 'round and toss some thugs about! in numbers I should think.

I'm selling almost all of my CD's this weekend! I hope to have rent for the next month and a half!

Now, be safe!

12:54 AM

Blogger Gary said...

Wow, you're brave. Ray Davies of The Kinks was walking through New Orleans with his girlfriend a few years ago and her purse was snatched. Ray took off running after the thief, only to be wounded by the thief's bullet. It could have been so much more tragic, but thankfully he lived.

I can't stand thieves, and it seems so many of them are motivated not only by laziness and greed, but by addiction, gambling and lots of other problems.

8:03 AM

Blogger Ahva Rahn said...

“I'm mad as hell and I'm not gonna take it anymore!”

if you wanna mess with the bear, make sure he’s not hungry, there’s a bunch of you, and you all have several large sharp pointy things.

10:41 AM

Blogger ing said...


Yes, it really happened! I was scared, too. But not just for me. I was scared for the guy who was (rightly) confronting the theif, and I figured that if there were at least two of us, the theif would be less likely to attack. Or if he did, I was hoping that others on the crowded street would be motivated to help. Still, though. I guess I was angrier about the inustice than afraid, and while I'm very glad nobody was physically hurt, this was important to me. I needed to do something.

I might have been more reluctant if he'd stolen a loaf of bread.

Christmas is almost here! Have you noticed all the lights in peoples' windows, hanging from everyone's eaves? Pretty!

Chocolate soup -- how do chocolate crepes with raspberry sauce sound to you? With whipped cream and just a little mint? You can pour on as much chocolate as you like.

My upstairs friend and I went to yoga this morning and afterwards we found a breakfast place on Church street. They have chocolate chip pancakes and nutella pancakes. (I went for the hash browns and avocado, though I should have opted for the veggie scramble.)




Yep, people steal for these underlying reasons, and I feel for them, to a point. But enough is enough. One person's problems shouldn't become everyone else's problems.



The only thing sharp and pointy about this bear are her words.

12:13 PM

Blogger matty03 said...

Yummmmmmmmmy on all counts regarding the food! I can't wait. ..I did so enjoy that magical icing you made for B's bday cake.

Just be careful!

5:28 PM

Blogger Stewart Sternberg said...

When living in Detroit, I belonged to a neighborhood watch. I also participated in a "Take Back The Night" organization, which regularly scheduled activities in the evening on the street.

As a civilized society, we must demand of one another civic involvement. Period.

6:42 AM

Blogger ginab said...

Yeah...and while we're taking back the hood, I want to recommend you all gather on the front porch to the house-dump where I live and you tell the druggies to get out and to stop tearing up the lawn by driving in cartwheels all over it and to stop telling me what I'm doing by letting my dog out is okay and to stop asking stupid questions like "how old is your bulldog?" and to stop inviting 60-year old caucasian white-haired guys to loiter on the front porch with a plastic bag of loose cans of pop (hello dealer!). If only I had the stomach for stoned-out eyes.

Theifs, scum, all of them...out!

1:40 PM

Blogger sage said...

WOW (I know that's been said), You're Spunky! but I'm clueless about the theif, which was the way I use to spell it before spell check...

4:24 PM

Blogger ing said...


I'm careful. But sometimes, I'm also mad! There's a balance, I guess. I'll figure it out.



Take back the night! Yes!



One of you = a crowd. You're good at this stuff.



Oh good god! Corrected. I always mess up the "ie" "ei" thing, despite that Charlie Brown rule.

10:19 PM

Blogger ginab said...

No I'm not. Really, I would like a group of good people to show up here. I would. Tired of doing it alone. Still awake, all panicky over being stuck here. 2am.


10:58 PM

Blogger Stewart Sternberg said...

ginab, the problem is always apathy and fear. And there is strength and safety in numbers. A lot of communities have done a lot with the proper organizing.

6:15 PM

Blogger Gary said...

Hi Ing, thank you for posting on my blog. It was shock. I've accepted his death now, but am left with this sense of disapointment in myself for not being more dogged at staying in touch with him. Reading the many tributes orange county musicians wrote about him though, it makes me realize I was blessed to have known him, let alone have the opportunity to make music together.

9:03 AM

Blogger ticharu said...

That guy should just get a credit card!

2:10 PM

Blogger matty03 said...

Oh no! The Blog Police called and they said you have to make a new post or you could get arrested. I wanted to give you a head's up! This sort of thing can be serious.

I had lunch at an independent store. It was yummy and fairly cheap.

The countdown is on!


Goldfrapp Christmas!!!

6:24 PM


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