Monday, August 24, 2009

Is that a sausage in your pants?

Did you know that the most commonly shoplifted item in America is the Bible? Really. The book that commands "Thou shalt not steal" is the hot ticket to pinch?

What's going on here? Is there a boom market for hot gospels? Are shoplifters more religious than we heathens? Or are the religious just more inclined to take things that don't belong to them?

Maybe they did as Jesus instructed, gave away all their shit and then found themselves Word deficient. I don't know.

Whatever it is that moves people to give up their good name and court jail time in exchange for a Bible they could probably get for free from some generous evangelical is beyond me.

Not that I'm above larceny. Everyone has their price, as the cynic says, and I'm not deluded enough to think I can't be bought. Hell, I'm in advertising. I sold my soul decades ago. But outright theft? I'm not sure of much, but I know my price is higher than the cost of a sausage from Whole Foods, that's for sure.

Which is the first thing this professional shoplifter interviewed in the Gothamist said he stole. A sausage, stuffed down his pants. Jesus, dude, have a little dignity.

I took some small pleasure in knowing he stole from Whole Foods, the company whose CEO is one of those loopy Ayn Randers, people who've fucked us up with their economics of greed.

I don't suggest you get into shoplifting, but if you're out of work, thanks to the economics of that other famous Ayn Rander, Milton Friedman, then here's some advice from the pro:

1...choose your locations carefully ... Don't start right away, go there several times, walk around, get to know the people who work there, especially the ones who don't dress in uniform.

2...get to know the camera system. You don’t want to be directly under the camera, you don’t want to be in front of the camera, you want to find blind spots, this is my technical term. Beyond the corner or the bottom reach of the camera.

3...have an exit strategy. Meaning put things in different places, in your pocket or under your pants. Don’t do it right away. First you take the item and walk with it for a little bit. Then when the moment is right and the inspiration is correct, you put it in there. And you don’t run away right away, you stay and shop in the store for awhile until the energy comes down and then you calmly walk out. But the bottom line is don’t rush, don’t rush.

I guess this is good advice in our new oligarchical economy. Bibles or bratwurst, maybe that's what we'll all have to look forward to in retirement.


norby said...

I work at a Petsmart, people steal rawhide bones from us pretty often. They hide the cardboard packaging in the Oops stations. Bastards-they have no idea how easily those thin bags tear, spilling urine soaked paper towels all over you.


Joe Saundercook said...

Now you have to tell us, Norby: what's the biggest bone that anybody ever stole?

norby said...

Just little ones Joe, you can dump them in a purse or backpack. I guess pet parents aren't very adventurous when it comes to bone theft!

Joe said...

I bet you and I could team up to rip off one of the big ones.