I'm not much of a writer anymore, but here we go with a journal.
|I'm a 62 63-year-old widow living in Madison, Wisconsin, with two adult kids who here go by Kid A and Kid B.|
|There was this guy summer before last who used to park his SUV outside my house for hours at a time, several times a week. He never left the vehicle. No one ever came to meet him, so he wasn't selling drugs. Why was he out there so much? Was he leeching off my internet? I couldn't figure it out. He always seemed to be looking at his phone.
When his SUV wasn't in front of my house, I'd see it parked unoccupied in front of a duplex a couple blocks away. Apparently where he lived. I had no idea what he was up to, sitting in his SUV for hours at a time in front of a house a couple blocks away from where he lived. Right in front of my uncurtained picture window, too. But I didn't see anything specific to complain about, just that I felt uncomfortable going into my front yard with him hanging around. And so it went on for several months.
Then one morning, looking out the window, I saw he was out there getting busy with himself. Not okay. I called the police. He drove off when he saw a police car coming, but came back later when I happened to be outside, and gave me a serious stink eye. I alerted the neighbors on the block, two with kids and the other an Airbnb that often has kids as guests.
Once I called the police on him a few more times, this guy, who I've come to call Wanker McPervert, stopped parking in front of my house doing his nasty stuff. Good enough for me.
The following summer, summer of 2020, I noticed there was an ice cream truck parked by his duplex. That struck me as, erm, interesting. But there are a lot of duplexes and small apartment buildings in the area, so I didn't know whether the truck was his. The thought made me uncomfortable; this is a low to lower-middle income neighborhood, and the kids here really love the ice cream truck. But I was busy with other things and didn't see who was driving when the truck went by.
Fast forward to today. This guy just introduced himself on Nextdoor. I'm our neighborhood lead there, so I welcomed him because that's what leads do. But then I saw that his introduction post mentioned he drives an ice cream truck, and looking at the photo in his bio I'm 99% sure it's the same guy. Now having his real name, I looked up his court records online. Yikes! They are voluminous and scary, including a very recent open case for operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated and carrying a firearm while a felon. Yes, all at the same time. His Facebook shows pictures of him, pictures of his duplex, his new vehicle (got the plate #, thx!), and a lot of run-of-the-mill gun/drug/skanky posts. All of it verifies without a shadow of a doubt that Wanker McPervert lives at the address I'd observed, is a felon who can't possibly have a valid driver's license, is the same guy who was jacking off in front of my house, and is on plan to drive a truck around the neighborhood selling ice cream to little kids all summer.
So now what? I don't see anything to do about a violent felon without a valid license driving an ice cream truck. I haven't had a chance to look through his whole legal record, but I don't see any sex offenses yet, and the felony record seems to have been from being a heroin dealer. But driving drunk with an illegal gun sounds pretty creepy for an ice cream man.
Update: It looks like the heroin conviction included two charges of involuntary manslaughter due to customers who died of overdoses.
|I hate it when there's an obvious way to make a ton of money, and the only reason I can't do it is some stupid little thing like honesty.
Used copies of McElligot's Pool are currently selling on Amazon at $250 and up. I mean, way, WAY up. In fact all the discontinued Dr. Seuss books like If I Ran the Zoo and To Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street, are going for over $200 each. This is looking like the hottest investment since GameStop. That $250 copy will probably be gone next time you look.
Meanwhile, our local public library system, which stocks fifty copies of McElligot's Pool, has gotten so accommodating in the past year that they don't even charge overdue fines anymore. Heck, the last time I needed a photocopy of my tax return, they refused to take my thirty cents. And the librarian gave me two copies to boot.
So other than an irrational love of the American public library system and an outdated devotion to quaint moral standards, what's to stop a person from reserving all those copies of Dr. Seuss books and selling them online for $300 a pop? And then when the library comes looking for their couple thousand books just saying, "Um, sorry, I guess my five-year-old lost them?"
The only satisfying thing about this is that the people who run the libraries are far from stupid, and would probably shine the flashlight pretty hard on any cockroach who actually tried to get away with this scam. But aside from my irrational love for the public library system and devotion to quaint moral standards, I can't help but think, Lemme see, $300 time 100 is........