Have you seen my lawnmower?
It's been a while since I've blown up some local television station's "security" story, so I'm going to indulge myself today. It's Monday, I'm eating lunch, and I can't help myself. Today's insanity is provided by NBC 12, out of Richmond, Va. It's titled "Break-in reminds homeowners of the risk of property crime." I'm entertained by the premise alone of this story. Essentially, homeowners in tony neighborhoods need to be reminded that they can be victims, too. It's not just in the ghettos that crime happens, you know. I mean, We did a search over the past three months, to see what other kinds are reported here. During that time, we saw three cases of theft, two cases of vandalism, and one report of burglary. Holy smokes. So three times, the housekeeper stole Ma's jewelry; twice, a couple of brat kids egged someone's house; and once, there was a burglary. In three months. In all of Colonial Place, a large part of Richmond, Va., which is a pretty big city. I'm floored by that. I'm shocked the National Guard hasn't been called in. Luckily, however, neighbor Todd Flowers is coming to the rescue: A recent shed break-in prompted a Richmond man to make a quick fix to his home security. And his ideas may help cut down on other area crimes. Excellent. Can't wait to hear what those ideas are. I'm all ears. This happened near Malvern and Stuart Avenues. Sweet. "The minute I saw the doors wide open I knew that they broke in," said homeowner Todd Flowers. Flowers did everything you're supposed to do. It just didn't matter. "And I had it latched right here," he said. "They just came with bolt cutters and snapped the lock right off." Everything you're supposed to do=put a lock on it. Good to know. Somewhere there's a book with a paragraph on what you're supposed to do to keep your gardening shed safe. That paragraph reads like this: Put a lock on the door. But the lock turned out to be the least of his worries, on a recent morning. The lawnmower was the first thing they grabbed. It's unclear how they've established the chronology of the crime. I'm assuming CSI guys were brought in to establish the timeline. "It was sitting right here," he said. "They stole the gas, but left me with the gas cans." I find this incredibly entertaining. So the thieves stole a lawnmower (virtually worthless - what are they going to do, put it on eBay?), but didn't want to carry the gas cans, so transferred said gas into another container? That makes zero sense. But, whatever. Not only that, but the thieves stole hundreds of dollars worth of other yard supplies, which all have to be replaced. "My blood pressure shot up and it was disappointing to see all my lawn toys stolen," he said. "You just feel violated." I know I feel violated. Anyway, weren't there going to be some new ideas on home (gardening shed, really) security here. I haven't found them yet. I'll skip ahead and look for them. Hmm. This might be them: "I think that people just need to be aware and do what they can to deter this kind of thing," he said. "Stay in communication with your neighbors, install lights." New ideas="be aware"; "do what they can"; "stay in communication with your neighbors"; "install lights." Do you think Todd can patent those? I'm guessing those ideas would be valuable in this whole anti-crime campaign the nation has embarked upon. Maybe he could get some signs made up. Or a web site. Todd's now taking his own advice. "So it's not a whole lot of light but its enough so you can see if there's anyone back here," he said. And hopes others do, too. Light pollution comes to Colonial Place, as gardening sheds everywhere are bathed in light. Odds are, those thieves won't be getting inside his shed again, anytime soon. "They, essentially have to rip the doors off," he said. Everything you're supposed to do now=get a bigger lock than you thought you needed. Also, this television station has no qualms about putting commas between subjects and their verbs. None whatsoever. They're grammar lawless, I tell you. Unfortunately, you can't be 100% safe from anything. So you do what you can to deter crime, but it happens all over the community so be aware. I think I saw that on a coffee mug once. Or maybe it was a bumper sticker. It's just so true. There might have been more commas on the bumper sticker, though. It's hard to remember. I've seen so many.