A Little Psychological Warfare Makes Life So Much More Interesting Don’tcha Think?

I have this little weekly ritual wherein on my way to work Friday morning’s, I stop at the supermarket nearest my office building, lock my bike up to the rim-wrecker bike rack by its front door, go inside, and purchase a bag of cookies that I then take with me to the office and put in the breakroom for my coworkers to enjoy.

Just something I like doing.

The transaction takes all of three/four minutes from the point of locking the bike to unlocking it and getting on my way, and in the couple months I’ve been doing this 8Ball has never been bothered, in part because most people are decent folk and also because the rack’s in a pretty quiet area of the parking lot/shopping center that doesn’t get a lot of foot traffic.

But then there’s this morning’s three- to four-minute cookie run — proof no good deeds go unpunished — because that interval was apparently plenty of time for some two-bit jerkbag to decide my bike needed fucking with physically and me mentally and did both by unclasping my two handlebar mounted headlights and repositioning them, one pointing backwards and the other at a downward angle… like so:

I noticed this immediately as I exited the store and approached my bike. Knowing that the headlights were in proper position when I left the bike (proof via the following thumbnail still from my sunglasses cam video when I happened to look downward at the properly positioned headlights not a block away from the store), and also knowing there was no way I could have inadvertently done this myself while dismounting, I looked around for any potential culprits, but of course found none because the coward had long scurried away probably to watch me from some shadow giggling like a little bitch. So I checked the rest of the bike to find nothing else amiss while eliminating the possible motives:

  1. Did some thief knock the headlights lose while trying to yank the bike out by its stem, only to split when discovering it locked? No. The clasp’s don’t easily come apart, And the position of the bike was unaltered with its rear wheel still seated in the rack. Most thwarted thieves aren’t kind enough to put back what they fail to steal.
  2. Were the objects of the thief’s affections the headlights themselves and someone/thing spooked him into aborting the crime mid-heist? Doubt it. If the pustule had managed to unclasp them both, that person certainly could have made off with them, or at least one.

Absent a good burglary scenario, I can only conclude that some phantom menace skewed the headlights intentionally just to screw with me. Whether the intent was to proactively educate me to the vulnerability of my bike’s accessories, or to just be a raging douchemaggot… I’m leaning toward the latter. And hoping — despite the slim chance of it repeating — for the opportunity to catch the perp in or near the act during my next cookie run and thus proactively educate him to the vulnerability of people who fuck with me and my bike.

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Will Campbell arrived in town via the maternity ward at Good Sam Hospital way back in OneNineSixFour and has never stopped calling Los Angeles home. Presently he lives in Silver Lake with his wife Susan, their cat Rocky, dogs Terra and Hazel, and a red-eared slider turtle named Mater. Blogging since 2001, Will's web endeavors extend back to 1995 with laonstage.com, a comprehensive theater site that was well received but ever-short on capital (or a business model). The pinnacle of his online success (which speaks volumes) arrived in 1997, when much to his surprise, a hobby site he'd built called VisuaL.A. was named "best website" in Los Angeles magazine's annual "Best of L.A." issue. He enjoys experiencing (and writing about) pretty much anything creative, explorational and/or adventurous, loves his ebike, is a better tennis player than he is horr golfer, and a lover of all creatures great and small -- emphasis on "all."