I thought I was running out of topics for my monthly column, but what a stroke of luck – someone stole my mountain bike!
I had just given a lovely elderly lady a ride home and was getting some eye drops for Hank Williams, my adopted rescue dog.
I had left my bike, on the rack on the back of my truck, unattended for a mere six minutes.
A young opportunist, who quite fancied a new bike, made use of that six minutes and nabbed the bloody thing.
As they say, no good deed goes unpunished.
I had a bike lock on it, but it has become apparent that I am combination-lock-challenged and must not have done it up properly. I have since bought the biggest, meanest bike lock I could find – key-operated, of course.
My bike has since been returned to me, due to some good work by the Oamaru Police. Plenty of people also shared my missing bike post online, so Oamaru’s latest bike thief had limited days with his new bike ahead of him either way.
The thief in question was busted on CCTV doing jumps at the skate park. Yes, jumps. My mountain bike doesn’t do jumps! Outrageous.
And to disguise it, he had given it a new paint job.
Here’s the thing, I think I’m more hacked off about the crappy bogan paint job than the actual thieving.
My beautiful new matt-black bike now has patches of shiny black spray paint and paint runs on it. Even the tyres got the treatment.
Hey buddy, perhaps a career in car painting isn’t for you – you just aren’t that good at it. And you’re not a very good criminal, either.
The offender in question will now go through restorative justice. Could this be a turning point on to the right path? Maybe, maybe not.
Here’s the thing about crime and punishment – it’s all about perception.
I worked at a summer camp in America a few years back, looking after the petting farm, and sometimes the campers would help out.
For some kids, mucking out the stalls was a privilege, and for some it was a punishment – it was all based on how they perceived the job.
What to do about the paint job?
I might get over it, but here are some options.–
★ Do a sweet vinyl wrap.
★ A custom repaint (in a colour that doesn’t appeal to teenagers who like to take things).
★ Just get over it and get it muddy. It’s not like I’m very good at keeping it clean anyway.
This is why we can’t have nice things!