I’ve been getting up at 5:45 a.m. to walk Claire.  I used to do that all the time until we had a small rash of armed robberies in our neighborhood at night (very unusual for us).  You would think we live in the ‘Hood, but Holy Cross is a pretty sweet place.  Problem is the real ‘Hood is just a few blocks away and our city police force is stretched at the moment.  So at least for now we make a convenient target.  I took a break from walks before daylight.

With dawn coming earlier I figured it would be okay for me to walk Claire in the morning again.  Today around 6:00 a.m. as we were heading out our back door I noticed a car driving slowly through our alley.  Sadly, the only time cars drive slowly through our alley is when they are up to something so I watched to see what would happen. 

Sure enough, the car stopped.  A short, scrawny white guy with brown hair and a baseball cap (details are for neighbors reading this) got out and started trying to put his hand through the partially opened window of my neighbor’s car that was parked behind her house. 

The guy didn’t see me through our trees, so I walked Claire over to about 20 feet from where he was and yelled in as loud and deep a voice as I could muster, “Hey!!!” (I’m not that creative at 6:00 a.m.). 

I think I scared Claire.  I know I scared the guy.  Surprised, he jerked his hand out of the car window, jumped back and yelled in annoyed voice, “What!” 

I suppose the conversational ball was in my court, but I couldn’t come up with a direction for it to go (“Hey stubby, let me try.  My reach is longer.” Or “Wait, you’re gonna need a coat hanger for that.”).  So Claire and I just gawked at him instead. 

He jumped into his blue sedan and backed down the alley in a cloud of dust so I couldn’t get his license plate number. 

It occurs to me that this story is actually kind of boring.   I need a much better shtick for dealing with petty thieves.   I’m definitely going to start carrying my cell phone.  And I think I may try to get really bulked up (and not just at my equator) and wear all black and some menacing sunglasses.  Any other suggestions for making me look a little tougher? 

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13 Comments on ““What!!””

  1. jennie Says:

    Ha! I loved this story. I think your approach obviously worked, because he took off. I’m proud of you for having the guts to even yell hey! I’m sure I would have just frozen.

  2. Troy Says:

    The Jim in me.

  3. jennie Says:

    Yes, but I have a feeling Mr. Jim would have come up with a little something more than hey. : )

  4. Howard Says:

    Please be careful!

    Kind of reminds me of a story long ago in our kiddome, once when my other cousins from the Big D were visiting…

    I was young enough that some of the evening is some what fuzzy, but I remember the exciting parts quite clearly.

    The whole family had been out to eat, (do you remember a trash pit of a fish house in Bald Knob? It was a favorite of my dad’s and my other Uncle James). As we were turning in to our driveway, we could see a pair of sneakers next the back tire on the opposite side of my dad’s truck. The guy took off running when he realized we were turning in. Dad slams on the brakes and he and my other Uncle James jump out to give chase. He yells something that made Uncle James turn around and run back to the car.
    Just as he was coming up the side of the car my Aunt Josie swung open her car door catching Uncle James square in the crotch. The blood curdling scream stopped everything. Neighbors started pouring out of their houses to see what the commotion was. After that, all I remember is Uncle James laying in the yard unable to move, talk, breath…. and my dad telling my mom that he was glad it was Aunt Josie’s door and not hers.

  5. John Says:

    No doubt Jennie. I’ll ask him what he would have done this weekend when I see him. We’re coming to Batesville.

    And Howard, poor James. It really is always the victim that suffers. Fortunately for me John was sound asleep upstairs. I remember the fish house in Bald Knob(why are catfish places always called fish “houses”?). The fact that Christie and I always looked forward to going there probably says something about the quality of Batesville restaurants vs. Searcy ones.

  6. Troy Says:

    P.S. It says, John above, but it’s really me (Troy).

  7. Troy, dear Troy. To make you look tougher? I just don’t have the energy. You are a mean designer though. Does that help?

  8. Sally Says:

    Troy I’m worried if you dress all in black and wear sunglasses, your neighbors might mistake you for the bad guy! I think you need to bring Claire over so she can have a lesson from Oscar in making scary noises. He seems to frighten people.

  9. Troy Says:

    Dave, I think it’s cute that you assumed I was asking you for advice on how to look tough in the first place.

  10. gunstreamgirl Says:

    you should ward off the perps with a thing of paint color swatches–ha!

    what is most important is that you caught him red-handed and guilted him out of doing whatever thievery he was trying to attempt.

    if i lived on your street, you’d be getting a good neighbor award, most assuredly.

  11. Troy,
    Don’t forget I own a pair of sheep-skin lined flip flops and a Swiss Army multi-tool. So there!

  12. jennie Says:

    Fred’s Fish House is pretty good…Don’t be hatin’ on ALL of the Batesville restaurants.

  13. Cara Says:

    You are a hero Troy!

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