October 9, 2008

Suburban Robbery Spree

Maybe the financial crisis has worried some people enough to resort to robbery to earn some extra $$$. Or maybe these malcontents are seeing how excutives from Lehman Brothers and American International Group Inc. seemed to skate through bankruptcy and bailout with luxury retreats and extremely generous financial packages, and they are just saying f--- it: If these a-- h---- can get away with this kind of bulls---, so can I, and much more!

In any case, guys with guns or other weapons—and looking for fast cash—have struck quite a few times in recent weeks in Walnut Creek, my hometown, and the surrounding suburbs. So reports my favorite local news blog, In perusing through this website, I’ve found 14 robberies in a little over the past two weeks (about one a day).

The latest happened just today in downtown Walnut Creek, at about 2 p.m. at the local Washington Mutual (now part of JPMorgan Chase), about a half mile from my fifth-grade son’s elementary school.

In fact, this school and the downtown high school, a couple blocks from the bank, both went into “lockdown” mode. I first heard about the robbery at 2:40 p.m. when my son called me at work from his principal’s office. He was asking, “Can you pick me up?” Fortunately, I only work a few minutes away, so I was able to get to his school quickly. He told me about the robbery when I picked him up. He said he was in science class at 2:10 or 2:15 p.m. when his teacher received a phone call, telling her to close the drapes. School regularly lets out at 2:25. Students who didn’t have an adult arrive on campus at that time had to go to the principal’s office and call for someone to come to the school to pick them up.

In any case, this all happened on the afternoon that the Dow Jones industrial average plummeted more than 670 points, a total of 2,251 points, or 20.8 percent, in the last six trading days.

Crazy times in suburbia and everywhere else.

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