Friday, November 14, 2008

Listen To Your Valley Girl, M'kay?

This is going to be a weird post.  On the one hand, I’m going to tell you to be cautious, and on the other hand, I’m going to tell you not to give in to the fear.

Some of you longtime Valley Girl readers might remember the vicious, nasty, cuss-laden post I wrote to the person who burglarized our house nearly two years ago while Derek and I were at work.  Unless you’ve gone through a similar experience yourself, nobody can adequately convey the feeling of violation and rage that accompanies such an event.  It is nothing short of devastating. 

Though we have since gotten an activated alarm system and a doggie door so Big Brown Dog can satisfactorily patrol the entire premises, and though the police who investigated the crime assured us that “these people” who do these sorts of things almost never return to the scene of the crime for a repeat offense, the feeling of being unsafe never really goes away.  Most people end up selling the house and moving after being robbed for that very reason, but for others, that’s not really an option. 

One of my dearest friends of all time had such an experience last night, I’m sad to report.  Everyone was home and asleep and oblivious to what was happening in their home – even their mean, protective pit bull who would scare the bejebus out of anyone.  Some asshole got in, rifled through their most personal and expensive objects, picking and choosing what to take, and slipped out without being noticed.  All while their two kids slept in the next room. 

People, going through it myself was bad enough, but knowing someone you love is now going through these feelings is awful, and since you are likely someone I love if you are reading this, or even if I have never even met you, you are someone I care about, and I am begging you, BEGGING YOU—

Step up the home security right now.  Today.  I don’t care if your dog is Cujo and you sleep beside an insomniac Special Forces mercenary with Bionic hearing and a bad attitude.  KEEP YOUR DOORS AND WINDOWS LOCKED UP.  Put motion detector lights on your roof or by the front door.  Don’t leave out valuable stuff that can be seen from the street.  If you are home and someone comes to your door selling shit, let them know you are home, but don’t open the door.  Tell them (as I do) that you have a really mean dog that will bite them on the balls.  And as the cops who took our burglary report told us to do, put wooden dowels in your windows like this…

… so that windows cannot be forced open.  Every single window, even ones you think nobody would ever know about.  You can get these at any hardware store for cheap and cut them down to size to fit your windows, or have the dudes in the store do it for you.  And you know those plastic thingies that lock onto the window sash?  Do you have those?  Forget them – they don’t work and can easily be forced off.  That’s how Assholio got into our house.  Basically do everything to make your beloved pad say “Move along, Mother-Effer.”  These are hard times economically, and people will get more brazen about trying to steal your shit.  And while I sympathize with anyone having money probs, stealing what belongs to another and violating their sacred space is never the answer.

Which brings me to my next point I really want to make.  Don’t give in to the fear.  There is a lot of panic and paranoia in the air right now that only gets worse when people start feeling threatened.  They perpetuate a vibe of hostility.  I’m guilty of this – after our house was hit, a neighbor of mine cast suspicion on a guy down the street since he is kinda street-looking and drives a douchey car.  Other than being annoyed with his noisy douchey car, I never thought twice about the guy, but now I was looking at him with suspicion and hostility as well.  This is not good.  In times like these, we need to be reaching out to our neighbors with love and a helping hand more than ever, and thinking of ways we can help one another.  Being afraid of our current circumstances doesn’t help anything.  Our beautiful country has been through way worse and it will get through this.

But in the meantime, there’s nothing wrong with being a little extra cautious.  I’m just sayin’….

Be safe.






Anonymous said...

You are bang on! I'm an analyst for the PD, and spend way too much time reading reports of crime where a little extra caution might have prevented it. Make yourselves harder targets! If your house/car/storage shed is less inviting, or difficult to access, the creeps will move along. Don't leave stuff in plain sight. Lock your doors, use the dowel in the window. Check out the website for more good crime prevention tips:

(p.s., I'd use my livejournal ID, but it keeps kicking me off, so I have to post anonymously...)

Valley Girl said...

Awesome tips! Thanks, PD Analyst Dude/Dudette!

Anonymous said...

Dudette, I guess, or just an older valley girl (Monroe '80). We've got a holiday flier coming out, how to be safe during the shopping season. I don't have a link for it, but can send it along as a pdf at some point if you're interested.

Diane o' CAD

Anonymous said...

That's the link for the holiday crime prevention tips. Be safe.

Diane, the old Valley Girl