February 2004 (v6 i4)
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I hope youíre enjoying my stuff
An open letter to the guy who broke into my car ó twice
by Todd Nienkerk, Editor-in-Chief

Dear sir (I am assuming with good reason that you are a man): I would appreciate a moment of your time. Seeing as how you broke into my car twice in less than a month, I feel as though Iím entitled to say a word or two on the subject ó if you donít mind, of course.

But before we get down to the nitty-gritty, letís introduce ourselves. Iím a college student, which implies that I can read, write and occasionally think about things. Apart from this obvious difference, however, youíll find that weíre quite similar. I, like you, donít make any money because I donít have a real job. I spend most of my day exhausted and anxious due to a number of obligations to which I strive to hold myself. Youíre probably in the same boat; spending every waking, desperate moment trying to scrape together enough cash to buy a rock can really wear a fellah out. Please accept my sympathies.

I can understand why you took my stereo: detachable faceplates must be removed in order to discourage wife-beating paint-huffers like yourself from taking what you canít acquire on your own. And how foolish it was to park my car in broad daylight on a busy street! I suppose I had it coming. I shouldíve known that Iíd be the target of a wandering junkie with loose teeth and no good reason to live except to annoy and inconvenience me.

Donít get me wrong ó I admire your entrepreneurial spirit. Youíre obviously very good at what you do, and for that I congratulate you. Youíre your own boss, you work on your own time, you spend the entire day outside ó youíve got everybodyís dream job! You get to do what you love for a living, which in your case is crapping behind a dumpster and collapsing in a parking lot. Itís encouraging to see that even our most underprivileged can excel at something. And I was beginning to lose faith! Youíve worked very hard at becoming a complete asshole, and you should certainly benefit from all that youíve accomplished.

But thereís also such a thing as being too good. Why, for example, did you break into my car a second time the day after I replaced the stereo? Unfortunately, I can only imagine your surprise when you realized that I, having utilized the powers of my brain in a process some know as ďlearning,Ē removed the detachable face, thus rendering your efforts fruitless! Ahh, how sad you must have been ó that hot, rusty needle of black tar seemed so close, didnít it?

If you had any common sense, you would have waited a few days to lull me into a false sense of security. Had you not been so eager, I would have forgotten to be vigilant, and the stereo could have been yours! Alas, you were too quick and careless. You needed the money right then to buy a new screen, snort a gasoline-soaked rag, or whatever it is you do when youíre blessed with the unimaginable sum of $20 or $30 ó the street price of a mid-grade stereo.

With the possibility of such a windfall gone, you were frustrated. I would be, too, if I had to endure the strain of constantly avoiding employment. So what did you do next? You went into my trunk and stole a box full of tools. Tools. And what do you plan to do with my tools, hmm? Are you going to use them? Are you going to do something with them? Iíve got sour news for you, pal: pawn shops donít pay much for a couple of screwdrivers and half a quart of Mobil-1, and you canít make a pipe out of a collapsible tire iron.

And what went through your mind when you stole my binder of burned CDs? Do you really think that somebody would want to buy ToddMix Three or a ripped copy of Goodbye Yellow Brick Road? Or did you grab them on the way out of my car like some sort of crackhead impulse buy? Were my CDs intended to be a consolation prize for the pitiful losing streak that follows you like your own stink?

So where is all of my stuff? You probably sold the stereo to buy some cans of gold spraypaint in paper bags, that much is obvious. I suppose the CDs and tools got ditched when the cops spotted you walking around with a Rubbermaid box and you took off towards the nearest safehouse.

Iíd love to find out where you dwell ó an apartment? A delivery entrance to a strip club? An open sewer? ó and break in when you leave. Iíll imagine the look on your face when you return home to find your domicile razed, plastic patio furniture and all.

And then Iíd light your house on fire with a cigarette butt casually flicked out of my car as the tires squeal and I tear away into the night.
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