One of my serious pet peeves is on my mind this evening and I want to rant about it. That is the subject of stealing. The reason I'm pissed off about it at the moment is that I was going through my CD collection and I noticed that some more of them are missing. Normally I would just take a deep breath and deal with it which is what I usually do but instead I'll blog.
We all have stolen stuff in our life, whether it's hotel towels, a cute little shot glass from a bar, or maybe a little teenage shoplifting phase at the mall. I've stolen stuff back in the day and to be honest I was pretty damn good at it.
Teaching yourself not to steal is tough because you will always be tempted no matter what you tell yourself in advance. I decided a few years ago that I wasn't going to steal anything ever again. There were two main reasons. First of all I'm a Christian and I know that it's a sin, and second of all I believe in karma and that what you put out into the universe comes back to you.
I can remember the last thing I stole. It was a pool ball from a bar. Why do I remember that? Because I still feel like it was a dumb thing to do. I was going through this phase where I wanted to teach myself "contact juggling" so I could be like Jareth the goblin king from Labyrinth and I couldn't afford a magic crystal ball. I could have just waited until I found a set of pool balls at the thrift store and bought a whole set for a couple of bucks. Instead I ruined a whole set at the bar by stealing the cue ball. That was the last thing I stole about three years ago and I can honestly say I haven't taken anything that didn't belong to me since.
So I was going through my CDs tonight and I'm missing my favorite Pixies CD "Doolittle". Normally I would just burn off a new one but it's one of the few bands that I want to have the real fucking CD. The Pixies are my favorite band and I've spent over 15 years building up my collection. This isn't the first time I've had to replace a disc. What do I have to do, buy a safe? Every time I look at my collection I remember where and when I got that particular CD and the joy of finding it. Some of the rare ones I had to order or travel out of town to dig through record shops to find. All someone had to do was take it and put it in their pocket.
Reading this you might think I'm getting carried away but I have a reason to be upset. The last two people I let stay in my house not only owed me money but stole shit when they left. I tried to do something nice by giving good friends a place to stay when they were having a rough time and that's how they paid me back. And it also ruined all of my best friendships because I guess it made things so uncomfortable that these guys won't even talk to me anymore. I did what was right and forgave them both and told them that I just wanted them to give the crap back. One of the guys broke back into my house while I was gone to get the rest of his stuff and steal a couple more things from me. What a worthless asshole. I gave them an easy way out and I just got shit on. Thank God I don't own anything valuable.
One of the things that sucks is that I don't realize something is missing until later on when I'm looking through stuff. Then I just get pissed off all over again. A while back I was cleaning up my art studio and I moved a painting that was up on a high shelf. I saw a whole stack of DVD cases back behind there and they were all empty. The last guy that stayed with me had asked to borrow them to watch shortly before he left. So he took the discs with him when he left. What a fucking idiot. First of all it's obvious that those particular movies are ones that you liked and borrowed. Second of all what kind of moron just takes the discs and hides the cases behind a fucking painting? Did he think I was never going to move it? He should have just left me a note that said, "Hey, I'm a fucking idiot and I decided to steal these movies but I left the cases behind just in case you don't believe me".
If you think that is stupid you have to hear about this. Another collection of mine that has been raided over the years is my Garbage Pail Kid cards. To understand this let me explain my collection. The cards are organized about as anally as possible. They are all stored in protective sleeves by number and series in neat binders so you can go through page by page and look at them. Quite often somebody will see them in my studio and ask to look at them. This has happened lots of times and usually it's a lot of fun. A couple weeks later I'll be looking through them and what do you know, there's an empty sleeve. What kind of retard steals a card with their name on it? Every card has a name like "Heavin' Steven" or "Anna Banana" and I can remember pretty much every single one. This has happened at least three times. I don't mean to question the intelligence of my guests or coworker or anyone else I've let look at these but come on, why don't you just leave a post-it note where the card was with your name on it? Do they realize how hard it is to order one single trading card from 1985? If I want to buy it I'll have to pay $200+ on Ebay for an entire set of that series and have 83 duplicate cards. I hope they enjoy that stupid fucking card. I wonder if they would have stole it if they would have realized how much trouble I was going to have to go through to replace it. It's just like that fucking Pixies CD. Now I'm going to have to go to the fucking mall or Barnes & Noble and buy another fucking copy of "Doolittle" and look like a jackass to some young clerk who gives me a shit-faced grin. I'll know exactly what he's thinking as he wraps it up for me and asks me if I have a supersavers card, "What a generic poser motherfucker". I may as well be buying a copy of Nirvana "Nevemind". Then I get irritated and want to rip off my shirt and show him the Pixies logo tattooed on my shoulder. And of course I go to the fucking mall all the time. While I'm here I need to remember to stop into Hot Topic and buy an overpriced T-shirt with Sloth from Goonies that says, "Baybee Ruuth!!" on it. Oh yeah. and make sure it's one of those ringers that's made to look "retro" by beating up the iron on. This is the humiliation of a theft victim.
I guess the lesson I want everyone to take from my rambling and ranting is don't steal ANYTHING. Not a pen from work, a roll of toilet paper from the gas station, clothes from a friend, a lighter. If someone gives you back extra change or too many double cheeseburgers give it back. Be honest. Make it a point to be honest. You never know who gets screwed or has to pay for that.