By On the occasion of our 20th anniversary
By Gustavo Arellano
By R. Scott Moxley
By Alfonso Delgado
By Courtney Hamilton
By Joel Beers
By Peter Maguire
By Charles Lam
Aug. 17. While executing a college prank, an anonymous friend of ours used to break into our dorm room each week and clean it up, leaving us standing cheerfully perplexed amid neatly folded laundry. Seems like this sort of rave is catching on, although in a creepier form. A man living in the Anamesa Motel in Costa Mesa arrived home to find his front door splintered, pried open and unlocked. No items inside the room were removed. However, the resident's .410 shotgun had been taken out of its storage spot and placed on the bed. Apparently, the unknown intruder simply cleaned the resident's gun—solvent, gun oil, a cleaning stick and a freshly-soiled rag sat beside the gleaming firearm—and then left.
MAGIC PEN FOILS THIEF, DECODER RING NOT NEEDED Aug. 17. Charles Mizera, a clerk at Balboa Market in Newport Beach, was working the day shift when a man entered, selected a $30 bottle of "Moet" sparkling wine from the cooler, and placed it atop the checkout counter. He then produced a mammoth wad of crisp high-end bills, peeled off a 50 and handed it to Mizera. After completing the transaction, the clerk noticed the normally green denomination had a slightly bluish tint. Suspicious, Mizera dragged a counterfeit-identifying pen across the bill to determine if the currency was fake. It was. Mizera rushed to the front door and approached the exiting suspect. "I need to see that," he said, grabbing the bottle. "The money you gave me was counterfeit!" The suspect meekly protested that he "got it from a bank." A bank? How about saying your buddy must've given it to you as payment for cleaning his gun? Or maybe convince the clerk that you accidentally handed him one of your artsy rectangular doodles—the one with the mug shot of Ulysses Grant surrounded by pious phrases and dollar signs? But don't say you got the obvious fake from a financial institution!
Perhaps realizing this lame excuse would not wash (launder?), the suspect took off eastbound on Balboa, escaping before police arrived. The Moet was returned to the shelf, and the false bill was admitted as evidence.
HAY IS FOR HORSES, RAT POISON IS FOR ANIMAL ABUSERS Aug. 23. A Newport Beach man arrived home from work to discover a box of "Rat and Mouse Killer" on the floor just inside his back door. Secured by a rubber band was a hand-scrawled note: "Hay Asshole: your dog has been barking all day don't let it happen again." The back door had been left open all day so the victim's dog could relieve itself inside the small enclosed back yard. It appears that an unknown suspect threw the poison over the cement yard walls and into the house, hoping the dog would eat the toxic bait. The victim contends that his dog barks infrequently, and he has never received any complaints from neighbors about the dog. In early July, a similar box of rat poison was tossed onto the man's second-floor balcony and ingested by his dog, resulting in a hasty trip to the vet where its stomach was pumped. Note from the Weeklyto the perpetrator: Hey, Asshole: eating rat poison improves your spelling. Try some.
ONE CAD MONTY Aug. 23. A fortysomething man dressed in "business attire" entered a Costa Mesa coffeehouse, ordered a 60-cent bagel and paid for it with a $20 bill. As the clerk counted out his change, the customer suddenly interrupted him with several additional pastry orders. Pulling out an additional wad of cash, the man also requested change for some of his large bills. Before the clerk could complete any single transaction, the customer continued to change his pastry selections and requests for change. Rapidly ferrying snack foods to the countertop and exchanging money with the headstrong customer, the clerk estimated that about 12 separate transactions occurred during the furious potlatch. At one point, the clerk became very confused and suspected that he was giving the man more change than was warranted—however, he was unsure exactly how much and so kept quiet. After the customer left the café, the clerk discovered that the cash register was an unbelievable $245 short. The clerk told police that he was the victim of a scam intended to overwhelm his faculties and, in the process, bilk the store of money. The view here is that we're en route to the café, we're hungry, and we're bringing our piggy bank.