In the Dream House
SOUTH XENOPHON WAY — After a hard day spent cracking books in the ivied halls of academe, Ken came home and cracked a cold one. After a hard day’s work under the foreman’s stern lash, Barbie came home and mixed up a tall glass of liquid relaxation. They drank together, Ken and Barbie, and about the time Ken was cracking his second six-pack and Barbie was popping the cap on a fresh bottle of club soda, Barbie started telling Ken all about her day. Ken said he didn’t want to hear it. Barbie pouted that Ken didn’t appreciate the sacrifices she made working with an all-male construction crew. Ken snapped that he didn’t see any great sacrifice in rubbing shoulders with burly, sweating hunks from 9 to 5. Barbie grabbed Ken’s school books and threw them onto the front lawn. Ken grabbed Barbie’s purse and threw it into the street. “That’s how you make me feel,” he said, possibly making a point. Their increasingly public spat was beginning to make the neighbors feel like calling the cops, and deputies soon arrived to calm the waters. Ken said they yell at each other all the time, but their arguments never become violent. Barbie said that in 10 years of marriage it was the first time authorities had been called. Deputies said it might be best if they parted ways for the night and continued exploring their feelings under the sober light of morning. Ken accepted a ride to his sister’s house, leaving Barbie with no one to tell about her day.
Mr. Pinchpenny’s golden parachute
WEST KEN CARYL AVENUE — Young Peter Pinchpenny got a job cashiering at the grocery store gas kiosk. About two weeks into the gig, he asked his boss for a few days off. When his boss said he hadn’t worked long enough to accumulate personal days, the lad announced he was quitting at the end of his shift and they wouldn’t have Peter Pinchpenny to push around anymore. That might have been the end of Peter’s grocery store story, except that the following shift reported that two of five scheduled cash drops had never been performed, and the un-dropped cash had dropped completely out of sight. Surveillance tapes showed Peter stuffing rolls of cash into his pocket with elaborate — even comical — slyness, and several phone calls to Peter ran straight into a wall of recorded messages. Store security notified JCSO, and promised to prosecute young Pinchpenny if he could be brought to heel. Deputies caught up with Peter at home, and the sheepish thief seemed to be expecting the visit. Peter said he didn’t take the money “on purpose” but rather took it home in his trousers “by accident,” having merely forgotten to turn the thick bundles of bills over to the head cashier at the end of his shift. Peter assured the officers he still had the innocently misappropriated funds and went inside to get them. Several minutes later he returned, announcing without explanation or elaboration that the money was gone. Realizing the futility of charging Pinchpenny with honest forgetfulness, deputies cited him for theft, instead.
SOUTH INDEPENDENCE CIRCLE — The condo complex manager smelled a rat. A malodorous malefactor had been plugging up the clubhouse men’s room toilet, she told deputies on the morning of Sept. 6, each time fomenting a foul flood of fecal effluent. Following the third offensive offensive, she’d strategically positioned a camera outside the luckless latrine, and by reviewing its contents after the latest unsanitary tsunami had settled on complex resident Mr. Hanky as her prime suspect. Officers looked up Mr. Hanky, who sheepishly admitted discharging the most recent disgusting deluge, but denied involvement in any previous distasteful inundations. Mr. Hanky detailed for deputies his unfortunate affliction with severe diverticulitis, which condition customarily presents itself with unseemly impatience. He’d been taking a cleansing dip in the clubhouse pool when the urgent call arrived, and had managed only to attain the bathroom before his bowels flowed over their banks. If he’d used more single-ply tissue than the toilet could stomach, he said, the extravagance was warranted by circumstances, and if he hadn’t notified condo maintenance of the odious aftermath, it was because he’d been just plain too embarrassed. Lacking evidence that Mr. Hanky was a serial commode clogger, and pretty sure he hadn’t plugged the pot on purpose, deputies deemed the case a clinker and logged off.