The New Special Olympics

July 11, 2014 at 10:04 am (Cussed Dumbers, Drunk and disorderly)

“DURR!”

I couldn’t help but flash back to the South Park episode where Cartman pretends to be retarded to win the Special Olympics. Last night’s Petty Criminal of the Day wasn’t that stupid, but there were some fairly hilarious moments.

I was training one of many new people. Fortunately, they get indoctrinated by several folks before me, so I get to observe and refine, making sure procedures are followed, how to problem-solve alone, etc… It also gives me time to roam without having to run a register or pay much attention to shoplifters.

On the other hand, it also gives me plenty of time to watch for shoplifters…

This night’s genius came in about 11:00 PM. I was wandering the back of the store, and flirting with Stevie, one of the local single-mothers. I saw a fellow grab a $6 bottle of Stumptown Tart and head for the back of the store. Unless he was looking for a crossword puzzle book, there was no reason to be going back there. Let’s see what he’s up to.

I cut him off as he rounded the end-cap. He appeared frustrated. I took a right around a display and another fast right to fall in behind him. As soon as I’d turned, he about-faced and beelined for the door. I fell in behind when I saw no bottle and him stuffing something down the front of his pants. He was out the door and heading for the corner.

Usually if the thief make it around the corner, they’re home free. No one can see or hear you point and shout. But I had someone covering the register, so I decided to follow him a bit. There are patrol cars all over, and Clean & Safe. None were present, sadly. It was on me.

As he hit the first corner, he looked back and saw me. Oh shit! He upped his pace, while I maintained a steady pace. “You’d better give me that beer back!” I yelled. A bouncer/doorman saw me point and stepped into his path, forcing the thief to run into traffic.

“Sorry man, liabilities…” said the doorman as we stormed past.

“It’s cool. He almost got hit by a bus!” I forged on, Thief saw me coming as we turned the second corner.

You can tell when someone hasn’t ran for a very long time. Joints aren’t ready for the impact, balance is affected, it turns into a time-lapse version of the Ministry of Silly Walks. He started to run, and my giggle-switch started to flip.

We approached corner number three. We had almost circled the block. He stopped, leaned against the pillar in front of Dress For Less, saw me coming and yelled, “SHIT!” His look of exasperation was one for the ages, and I will summon its memory when I need a quick smile.

By the time I made corner number three, walking like Jason Voorhees sans machete and hockey mask, he had disappeared. He could only have run into the bar, the residential hotel, or rolled underneath a car. I’m guessing option number three. He didn’t have time to get into the hotel, and I looked inside the bar.

So he got away. Store lost a six-dollar beer, but I let it be known that we won’t let you drink for free, at least not without a fight. And if he didn’t die from a heart attack after all that running, I’ll bet his legs are so sore today a clerk on crutches could catch him.

And I am training again tonight, with new trainee, Festus, who hates shoplifters.

I am giddy at the thought.

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