Feeling Stupid

“Did you do something with the girl’s bikes?” “No, are they gone?”

I didn’t even need to wait for the response from my wife, I knew. Anger. Distress. Sadness. A desperate hope in vain that there’s an explanation. There is not. They are gone.

Somebody had stolen my daughters bikes sometime in the past few days. That evening and the evenings since, I cruise around the neighborhood on my way home from work. I hope to see them…I don’t. I filed a police report knowing it was in vain. I told the officer that took the report, “I know I’m never going to see them again.” To which he responds, “I’m not supposed to say this, but you’re never going to see them again.” I know, but I hope. I love bikes, I watch for bikes things on Craigslist and Ebay all the time. I now read the Craigslist entries and my heart jumps every time I see “girls” or “Trek” in the subject. I hope it’s them. It’s not, nor will it ever be.

And then I’m crushed. Anyone that knows me, knows I LOVE bikes. I’m sad for my girls, but more than anything I feel stupid. Stupid for buying them nice bikes and not the crappy $100 ones from some dirty Wal-Mart like most parents. They deserve better and I want them to love bikes like I do. There’s a big difference between junk bikes and what I call “real bikes”. Stupid for not locking them up like I always knew they should be. But I couldn’t keep them in the basement like I do with mine. The girls, nor my wife can or will carry them in and out everyday or whenever we’re not going to be home for a bit. I thought about bringing them in for the winter, but the weather has largely been nice enough that they were still using them. So instead they were stored conveniently for them in the sun porch off the garage. It’s behind my house at the back of the lot. It can’t be seen from the street and you couldn’t see the bikes inside it. But still, I always looked at it and knew they should be locked up. It was an invitation for what I got. Stupid. How could I be so stupid? It wouldn’t have been hard to secure them to the wall of the sun porch to prevent the casual theft that this appears to be —nothing else was taken. Even locked, if someone wanted them bad enough they were going to get them. But leaving them unlocked was an invitation for them to be stolen. I know better, but apparently I didn’t. Stupid. And I’ve always preached to them to not leave them unattended out in front of their friends houses. That’s easy picking.

I’ll continue to look. To hope. But they are gone and they aren’t coming back. I don’t believe this was random, but rather someone who knows the girls or at least someone who knows of them. They had seen the girls on them, they know where they lived and possibly where they were stored. At this point they could show up for sale, but I don’t believe they will. More likely they were taken, abused and abandoned somewhere. Or as I told my wife, if you want to find them, go dredge the bottom of the (Erie) Canal. It’s only 3-4 blocks away from our home. She didn’t understand this, “Why would someone steal them and throw them in the canal?” Because young boys —the most likely suspects, can’t just show up at home with two rather nice girls bikes. Even the shittiest of parents are likely to question that. Or maybe I’m giving them too much credit. But after beating around on them they get dumped out in the woods or in the canal. Nobody ever sees them again and they are no longer connected to them. Case closed…for them anyway.

But now I’m out several hundred dollars. It’s enough to hurt, but likely not enough to make claiming it on my homeowners policy worthwhile. I haven’t looked into it yet and I don’t remember if my deductible is $500 or $1000, I believe the later. If it’s $500 I might be able to recover some of the loss, but is it worth it? And now I also have two daughters that are going to need new bikes. What do I do about that? Do I buy the cheap crappy ones that I hate so much? Do I buy replacements and actually lock them up as the others should have been? Maybe I can find a couple of decent replacements on Craigslist. I don’t know. Stupid.
January 12, 2013 @ 08:39 am | Category:
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