Saturday, April 2, 2011

Sons of bitches

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They say there is a circle of hell reserved for bicycle thieves. This would be of some comfort if one believed in a hell of fire and brimstone, where offenders are tortured for all eternity.

But, most likely, if someone has stolen your bike, or something from your bike, they are out there right now having good times, death far off in the future.

On March 26, Stephanie had her Miah Night Blaster 2000 stolen from where it was bolted to her handlebar -- along with the battery pack, plus a tail light -- while her bike was parked outside her bakery job in Ballard. She lost something in the area of $100 in parts.

Estimated time of theft is between 3 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.

Stephanie uses the light -- built special for her by Jeremiah -- to ride safely to work in the wee hours of morning. From now on she will park inside, and move her bike when it gets in the way.

She will have to get by using a smaller light, but it won't have the strength, or give her the peace of mind. In addition to the cost of new parts -- the expensive parts are the bulb and the rechargeable batteries -- Jeremiah will have to build another one.

Getting back to hell, some philosophers believe that hell isn't a place, but a condition of a turmoiled soul. As Raskolnikov taught us, there is no such thing as a perfect crime. Although the thief is likely enjoying the well lit path in front of them, perhaps something doesn't feel right.

Whenever the thief rides at night, he/she might remember where the light came from, and wonder about the person from whom he/she stole.

The thief might obsess over it, and instead of the light making night riding more pleasant than ever before, it serves only as a guilty reminder.

If such soul searching is taking place out there in the night, there is something that can be done.

Put the lights, and the batteries, in a plain paper bag; go to the business nearest from where it was stole; hand it to the first employee in sight, and say, "I think somebody here lost this." Then leave.

You'll be able to night ride in peace again, promise.

Here is the craigslist ad Jeremiah posted:

Friday night/saturday morning, someone stole my wife's bike headlight outside her work on Ballard Ave. When she came out to ride home on Saturday morning, it was all gone--light, wires, battery pack, and tail light. This is a homebrew light that I built myself, and there are only 3 in existence: one on my big red road bike, one on my buddy's brown road bike, and--until this weekend--on my wife's vintage blue Schwinn road bike. If you see any other bike in the Ballard area with this light, please call Jeremiah or Stephanie at (number redacted) anytime during daylight hours.

If the perpetrator were to return the light & battery pack by leaving it outside the place of business from which it was taken, charges won't be filed.

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