On the surface, you’d think the guy who jacked a rowboat to flee a University Place crime scene this week ranks right up there in the local dipstick criminal hall of shame.
The only way he could’ve staged a worse getaway? If he’d had but one oar and paddled in circles until police arrested him. Which really happened to a pair of dizzy thieves in a lake near Vikersund, Norway, in 2011.
As it turned out, the cops were waiting to nab our burglary suspect at Narrows Marina when he rowed the boat ashore.
But what if our dinghy pirate isn’t quite as irresponsible as he seems? What if he was following a law higher than any state criminal code?
Like, say, the Kyoto Protocol, or the City of Tacoma’s Mobility Master Plan?
It’s tempting to scoff at all the scofflaws throughout history who have spurned the traditional getaway car. Easy to write them off as a group of doofuses. (Doofi?) Among them:
- The San Diego bandit who held up a bank in 2010 and fled on a skateboard.
- The Florida man who robbed a hardware store last spring, then took off in a golf cart he stole from a nudist colony.
- Three thieves in South America who made asses of themselves last month when their getaway donkey started braying and gave them up.
- A Florida burglar who tried to escape in a pedal boat in 2010. His plan ran aground when he had to call 911 because the boat broke and he didn’t know how to swim.
Likewise, our Tacoma area gene pool has produced lots of crooks who couldn’t get out of their own way to make a getaway.
Gig Harbor banks were robbed, at least twice since 2008, by guys on bicycles.
And last month, a gang of South Sound bank robbers, whom authorities described as “highly sophisticated,” was busted while riding the one thing slower than a rowboat.
A Greyhound bus.
Before you laugh at them or cluck your tongues, consider that each of these people did precisely what’s been preached for years by respected organizations such as the United Nations and the Sustainable Tacoma Commission.
They used alternative modes of transportation to commute to work.
That alone should make them eligible for early parole, shouldn’t it?
It’s only a matter of time before we hear about a getaway in a Zip car, a LINK light-rail train or a vanpool.
The difference between good criminals and great criminals? The good ones leave no fingerprints; the great ones leave no carbon footprints.
Bribing the bullies: Nobody gets to join the good ol’ boys club of the Washington state Senate without enduring some freshman hazing.
Lucky for Sen. Bruce Dammeier, there were no noogies, swirlies or wedgies awaiting him Wednesday. But the Puyallup Republican was subjected to some good-natured roasting before he handed out gifts to colleagues after his maiden floor speech, as is custom for newbies.
Senate leader Rodney Tom said that since Puyallup is known for its dealerships, he expected Dammeier would give away cars.
Forget it, I’m not Oprah Winfrey, said Dammeier. (Or a lobbyist, he could’ve added.)
There were jokes about rhubarb, because Dammeier’s district grows it.
There were jokes about Dammeier’s clothing, because he sat on the Goodwill board of directors.
The pride of Meekerville took the mocking in stride, then passed out the initiation tribute to his fellow pols.
Serve ’em right if they were stale discards from last year’s fair.
Seattle’s the second-sexiest city in the U.S.! Try saying that 10 times really fast! Then lay back, light a cigarette and bask in the afterglow, warm enough for us to enjoy 30 miles south.
The ranking comes from ustarnovels.com, an erotic publisher that compiled data from 2,000 customers and used book orders to determine America’s 10 “sexiest cities.”
Needletown came in second to Hotlanta. (As if the Seahawks’ playoff loss to the Falcons wasn’t indignity enough.)
The words “sexy” and “Seattle” sound contradictory, what with the image of pasty, unshaven high-tech nerds covered up most of the year in a burqa of North Face fleece.
But what do we know of sexy? Mrs. Nose had to inform us the other day that the Seattle-based bestseller “Fifty Shades of Grey” is not about the local weather.