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value of time, rant on thieves

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

i've have this flash animation from my 404 page running on my screen for hours. it's a great screensaver. the animation was built for our cool baby clothes site somewhere in 2004 for the home page, before i realized that flash would kill our seo. i haven't found a good place for it until now. it's supposed to make folks who have reached a bad url feel a bit special.

babywit flash animation

no flash allowed on the baby site and now i must write a blog filled with keywords so forewarning, unceremoniously i am going to be dumping words like baby or toddler clothes into my writing. how horrible. i feel like such a whore because really i don't feel at all like writing about baby clothes or hip toddler clothing. how about today instead i write about how my car was broken into last night. it has nothing to do with baby clothing and will probably weaken my seo but god, how much can one write or read about the baby clothing industry day in and day out.
i will update you on yankers. i've tried to get a hold of my yankers pattern maker in sf to make some alterations and still haven't heard back from her so i am getting a bit antsy. what, did she take a VACATION? jesus.
and on jesus did you see the shirt that said 'Jesus Wouldn't Defriend You?'
Rebecca suggested that i could use a shirt with the like symbol thumbs up on a shirt with the number 1 under it cause i only got liked by myself. HA HA HA. so funny rebecca.
here's my rant to the f@cking thief who broke into my car last night.

I chose the gym over another drink with an online blind date. I had been at my computer all day long and at 9 pm I decided to go for a nice work out at the gym. I did manage to get out briefly for lunch and to grab a brace from the rebuilding center for a new light fixture Jason had given to me. I found the perfect one sitting in a pile of crap, gold with leaves embossed into the metal. Very antiquey looking. It would go together perfectly with my gold metal bedframe. Currently I have one of those horrible sort of home depot fixtures hanging above my bed that I suppose someday might be considered a cool treasured antiquey sort of fixture by some woman hunting rapaciously through boxes of ancient fixtures in some junk store. I have my doubts about that though. Everything these days is built so cheaply as easy tossaways.

I parked in the garage even though there was plenty of street parking because the garage was lit up. I grabbed my workout bag but decided to leave my purse and this not two days after Dana had explicitly warned me not to leave my purse in my car. Her friend’s car had just been broken into while he was working out.

I selected number 56 to place my bag into and found on the top shelf of the locker a brand new iPad2 sitting in a very nice black suede case. I have been lusting after one for months but went with the kindle to save money. Oh the temptation. Of course I must return it to its owner but I cannot deny I was tempted as I opened the cover and slid its button on to search for information on its careless owner. The device was close to brand new, no scratches and hardly any applications installed on it or fingerprints marring its smooth touchscreen. I found the owner and phoned her letting her know I would leave her iPad2 at the front desk.

After my leisurely workout I meandered out into the frigid night air and found two guys in the garage sweeping up glass around their cars. I opened my car and found my seats covered in shards and cubes. My purse gone. The two guys swept up the glass from my front seat and cleared it from beneath my car. We lamented on what we had lost. 

As I drove home I began to think of all the things in my purse. 
My expensive glasses, 
all my favorite make up like this amazing eyeliner and dark smudgy blue eye shadow color that worked perfectly together,
my favorite lip gloss that embarrassingly cost over $20 (lip gloss is very important), 
my credit cards, 
my omsi card that i haven't used even once this past year, 
my drivers license,
business cards with my home address on them, 
$150 and odd change in cash, 
an unused $100 Script card to New Seasons, 
a $200 money order that I had delayed in cashing because I found it difficult to make it over to my new community bank, 
my checkbook with my groovy edward gorey cover i'd picked up at a 2010 secret society xmas sale, 
my back door key that was attached to a little pouch I picked up at crafty wonderland last year. I thought it a fabulous idea that she make little pouches with keyrings on them. She sewed them all out in these groovy vintage fabrics. 
A necklace that I loved but had unclasped and placed in my change purse because my son grabs at my neck quite a bit and its chain is so delicate that it tends to break easily. 
My brand new spider ring that I just picked up from ruby girl. I love this ring. It is cast in sterling silver from a harry potter lego piece. It feels like it was made before things got cheap. Built to last. Heavy with weight and a solid band. Its little spider legs were getting hooked on my hoodie and I have always had difficulty wearing rings so it was sitting in my bag waiting for me while I worked out.
And, my favorite queen bee bag, one she no longer makes. It is super cool, grey and black with a huge wing sewn across the cover. 
But, all these things together do not add up to my deductible per incident. 

Right now I am sitting at safe lite auto glass where I must spend over an hour waiting for them to install a new window. I was worried all last night they would return to clean out my auto. The thief had been frightened off by the manager at the gym just after he had broken my window. My car was the final car he got to. What I wondered is why the manager failed to let its members know that four cars had been broken into in their garage. He told me he didn’t want to make all the patrons nervous and figured everyone would find out when they left. I suggested that perhaps if he'd been kind enough to let me know right after my window had been broken I might still have a purse. It wasn't like the gym was packed at 10 pm at night.
Because in my purse there was much more than just my things, my time sat in there. Loads of it and time is something I cannot buy and I cannot make more of to replace my lost time. Time, once lost is gone. Permanently. I did not get angry until I began to realize how much of my time was stolen.

I looked at my phone and saw a new email from my credit card company. Not even an hour after the theft and there was fraudulent activity detected on one of the cards from my purse. I spent the early morning calling all my credit cards and canceling them. They went to plaid pantry to spend $13.32 and hit up the shell station for some gas. Then off to eat dinner TWICE. I guess they were hungry. They used my REI card at REI.com (do i get cc points for that purchase)? They used my amex at northface.com. They used my bank card to purchase monthly passes at TRIMET. I passed this information onto the police officer who took the report. She was amazingly sympathetic. Young with a spray of freckles across her face.
“We will get them with their purchase at the Plaid Pantry. They film everything at those places and there is a time stamp on the use of your card.”

More time spent moving all the things from my car into my house.

Today I am sitting on a plastic chair at a plastic table inside of safe lite to have my glass replaced before it starts pouring. They are located off of 158th somewhere in nowhere land. They estimate it will take them an hour to an hour and a half to finish.  Safe Lite has no wireless. I cannot work. Every minute I don’t work is costing me and with NoSchoolvember I’ve had to really struggle to put in enough hours. Add into it all the things that keep piling up…broken presses, holidays, finding cash, managing contractors remotely, yankers, a shopping cart that still needs a tremendous amount of massaging, SEO woes, educating myself on new marketing techniques to get our sales back up and on and on and I have two children who NEED me. I have to be present for them. It’s a struggle to find time.

Then off to my community bank because I must sign papers to contest the TRIMET charges and close my checking account and open a new one. More time to inform my mortgage and car lenders of my new checking account number.

Then the DMV to apply for a new license but first I must dig up my passport, social security card, proof of name and address. I can only imagine how long I will be sitting in that row of chairs staring at the clerks calling off the numbers from the queue.

Then I need to somehow replace my glasses. But, this means going to see an optician as my prescriptions is expired. Then, I must go and select new frames and order, wait and go pick up.

My back door lock needs to be changed because he has my address and my key. I will have to purchase a new lock and install it. This means going to Freddy’s, picking out a lock, waiting in line, bringing it home, removing the old lock and installing the new one. 

I understand theft quite well. the motivation. the thought process behind it. "i don't have enough money and they have so much, they'll never miss it."
or "their insurance will cover it."
or "i really like that new iPad2 and someone careless left it in a locker so it was just going to be taken anyway."
or "those millions of mindless idiots who bought houses they couldn't afford are losers anyway who don't deserve to own a home."
honestly it wasn't hard for me to call the owner of the iPad2. and when i turned in the iPad2 to the desk clerk it wasn't for some fear of being the recipient of some karmic retribution or guilt out of hurting someone else but rather because in reality i was saving myself time. See it takes time from both sides when something is stolen. the loser must spend time replacing all that is gone, the taker must figure out how to make it their own or dump it and how to escape punishment.

My time has been lost but so has the time of the person smashing the windows, sorting through wallets, trying out cards at gas stations and restaurants to be captured on film, shopping online to pass out their address. Time has been lost in our community as the police officer takes the reports and follows the leads, the insurance companies who file the claims and jack up their rates, the credit card companies who close down the cards, send out new ones, mail out claims against the fraudulent charges, make up for these losses by raking their customers with higher fees etc. it all circles around to end up in a punitive circle of vicious taking with every member of our society taking part in some way because busy work isn't constructive work, it's just damned wasteful.

We all have pretty much the same amount of time. a second for me is the same as a second for you. i do not have more time than you nor you than me. it is rather how we decide to make use of our time that adds or detracts from the value of this precious asset.

the value of time. it has taken me decades to recognize it. today has made it crystal clear.

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