Rides and Tales

Observations From Behind Bars

The Season

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Oh, yeah, another Yule and no sign of tamale boys in my neck of the woods, yet. Christmas time just ain’t, without spicy tamales, hand made from a recipe handed down by some gal’s abuelita (grandma).
I may have to trust the local craftsmen at the taco stand to hook me up.

Of course, its still early for Christmas tree shopping, but in the past few years I’ve missed being approached by Krishna’s followers with real deals on incense, as well ( as if the fragrances of an exotic fir tree and baking cookies weren’t enough).

The perfume guys ought to be hitting the streets, soon, too. I know you’ve been approached by them either at Christmas or Valentine’s Day; the guys who are in the business of selling bottled fragrances and are willing to cut you an unbelievable bargain on the last of their stock so’s they can get on back to the little woman and babies at home in Austin-Houston-Waco-Dallas-Victoria-et cetera.

The “Toys For Tots” parade and the “Santa’s Helpers” toy drive are just days away , though, and I have determined to do a little light maintenance on my scooter beforehand.

Now, as part of this determination, I decided to shop around for a tool called a “torque wrench” and I decided to see what Sears has, first, as there is every chance of finding tools Made in USA, there.
I looked at what they had, made a mental note of the price and moseyed on out to the parking lot and the Big Yella Bike.

As I was getting my hat and gloves together, this fellow in a late model pickup truck pulls up and asks me if I’m a mechanic.
When I answered in the negative he asked if I do my own work (such as there is to do on a Honda).
Now, I realized the guy was up to something but I was bored enough to play along.

I told him I was shopping around for a torque wrench and he showed me a new air-driven ratchet. Nice, I said, but useless to me, whereupon he asked how much I’d give for the fancy Sears model torque wrench ( the one that cost $130 more than the one I was looking at).
He offered to sell me one for the same price as the small one.

As I was brushing him off he told me he’d just got out of prison and needed money.

What’s wrong with this picture?

For starters, he claimed to have just been released, was driving an expensive truck and was all HWQ ( hot, wet and quivering) to commit a felony in clear view of a total stranger.

Secondly, this kind of racket has been used to build a nest egg for the family of someone about to go away, not someone who has just been released: You order a big ticket item and the principle steals it and sells it to you at a deep discount (no overhead).

And, third, he introduced  the prison element at the end of his pitch rather than as a lead-in to solicit my sympathy.

Okay, so it smells, up front. He may have been working a variation of the old “after hours liquor” hustle:
You drive into a different neighborhood, say, The Cuts, and someone offers to ‘gitcha afta ‘owahs likka”. Your money goes in a front door and out the back while you wait at the curb, in your car.

Personally, I think this guy was some kind of cop or wannbe who has been watching too much “Sons of Anarchy”.

Yeah, ’tis the season for smash-and-grab thieves and other low-lifes to work the parking lots and streets.
Heads up.


Written by fiddle mike

November 30, 2008 at 8:15 pm

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