Friday, August 19, 2005

Like a thief in the night …

… only it was broad daylight and there were plenty of people hanging around. I was on the back porch area of our office building this morning. Toasting a portable nicotine-delivery device and jawing with fellow "bad children" who have to go outside to smoke. We were talking about how damn hot and humid it is; making derogatory remarks about how it felt a lot like Houston - where I was born and raised - also known as "Sauna-bath City." Yup. Seemed like a Houston weather kind of day.

Then, it happened. A woman whom I have had the utmost respect for, walked up and stood by the newspaper vending machine which is to the side of the mail boxes, just outside the back door. She put her purse on top, and opened it, and proceeded to dig out two quarters. She deftly slipped them into the machine and opened it - taking out two newspapers. Not only the one she paid for, but two. Stealing right in front of everyone, and placing the newspapers under her arm (as if nothing out of the ordinary just occurred) and gathering up her purse, she entered the building and disappeared around the corner.

This is where it gets even weirder. No one seemed to notice! Wait. Wait. I make eye contact with three people who witnessed the purloined papers demonstration and the person who took them. With a look of dismay on my face I looked back at the vending machine, then back at them. They are oblivious to what just occurred before their eyes.

So I dug two quarters out of my pants pocket, inserted them into the machine and opened and closed it without taking a paper. The folks I was visiting with dropped their jaws and one even said, "Hey, why'd you do that, I would've loved for you to buy me a paper?"

I looked at him like he had twelve heads and said, "I did it because she stole a paper. Her immortal soul may only be worth 50¢ to her, but the guy that works the paper rack shouldn't have to suffer because of it."

I have absolutely no respect for this woman. It was gone in the time it took for her to steal the paper. I have even less respect for the numbnuts that thought I was crazy for not taking a paper.

They just don't get it; and I doubt they ever will. Man's inhumanity to man.

Sheesh. Idiots. Shame on them all.