Category Archives: Story

Package Thief Exposed

Friday afternoon I went to take out the trash, and noticed a guy bent over on my neighbors porch.

As I walked down my stairs, he straightened up, came down the stairs, and walked past me, holding a couple of bags in his right hand (the side further away from me).

My first thought was: “Did he just steal something off their porch?” (as I had heard a FedEx truck earlier in the day).

I ran upstairs and grabbed my coat, and chased after the guy to get a picture of him.
I couldn’t confront him because I had not yet checked the porch to see if he had indeed taken something.

After I got back home I looked and saw that there was an empty box, and when I checked surveillance footage, I saw that he was an opportunist who was walking down the block, saw the package, pulled out a blade, and swooped for the kill.

The ease that he did the act, the calmness that he left with the items and slipped them into his backpack, makes me think this isn’t his first (or last) time doing it.

Here is his picture. Keep an eye out for him, and if you see him, try and keep him in your sights to help keep the neighborhood safe!

Package Thief

NYPDs Lack of Communication

The NYPD tries hard to do their jobs, they really do. But often faults and mistakes come down to the lack of communication between the officers and the public they serve.

For example this story from my Tuesday:

I was driving down 48th Street in Manhattan, and I was told that I couldn’t go thru past 6th Avenue further East towards 5th Avenue.
It’s not that traffic wasn’t allowed on the block…they were allowing cars to turn off 6th onto 48th, just no thru traffic.
So I pulled up next to the officer and asked: “Where can I go to thru to the East Side?”
The response? “Sir, you have to turn onto 6th.”
Regardless how I asked the question, he wouldn’t answer, forcing me to turn North on 6th.

So I proceeded to the next Eastward block, 50th Street, only to get stopped by a cop there too.
“Sir, you can’t turn off 6th onto 50th.” Apparently they weren’t allowing turns, only thru traffic.
When I asked her the same question: “Can you at least tell me how far up I have to go before I go East?”
I would only get the answer of “You have to keep moving, and you can’t turn here.”

I understand. You have a job to do, namely ‘control traffic on that block’.

But if you are creating a detour, someone needs to have instructions as to where the traffic is supposed to go.

You are dealing with a city that ALWAYS has too much traffic in it, at a time of year when there is an overabundance of unnecessary traffic, simply to see a tree. If you don’t want madness and mayhem, then you have to have a plan in place, and proper communication to keep traffic moving.
Rerouting and random turning points, with no set destination or plan being made public, just leads to added traffic, and confused drivers.

Rage In NYC Taxis – #4K43

A little while ago I posted a complaint about a taxi on Facebook, and faced backlash for it “not being fair to the cabby”.
The issue at the time was a “middle finger sticker” on the back window, where I thought it was inappropriate, others thought that it may have been stuck there without the drivers knowledge so it’s not his fault (despite the layer of dust over the sticker).

Well this time, the driver is 100% at fault for his actions, and situations of inexcusable rage. There are a few instances with the same driver within the same block period.

It started on 48th Street approaching 5th Avenue in Manhattan, where the left turn lane had a truck parked in it, so the thru lane became the turn lane.
The first car after the turning cars, a jeep, turned into the parking lane to go around them…the taxi behind him (Mr. 4K43) did that too, and was upset that there was a car now in front of him.

To show his anger at the other driver, he hopped half up on the sidewalk and pulled alongside the jeep, rolling down his window cursing him out.
And to prove his point that he deserved to go first, he proceeded to ignore the red light and moved through the crosswalk to cut off the jeep (half on the sidewalk, into the crosswalk) while people were trying to cross the street.
Once the light changed, he crossed Fifth Avenue, and the Jeep waited until the people finished crossing and then we kept going up 48th.

A few blocks later, at 48th and Lexington, the cabbie decided his need to turn, and instead of using the turn lane (and turn light) where cars were lining up, he went past them, and stopped in the thru lane, without his blinker on, and blocked thru traffic that had the green light, waiting for the red turn light to turn green.
When asked “Excuse me, does your blinker work” he proceeded to give the middle finger and say “Nope, it’s broken”.

For starters the action of driving on the sidewalk is a classic case of road rage. The flipping of the middle finger is a classic New Yorker move, but unacceptable for a New York City medallion driver. And lastly, the broken turn signal (which we all known wasn’t broken, right?) is not an option for a taxi, as the car needs to be in full working order.

I Got Hit And Run…And Made Them Pay

Friday I went for a slice of pizza, and parked legally in front of the pizza store (located on Kings Highway between East 7th and 8th, for those locals interested). I was inside for less than a minute (enough time to walk in, ask for a slice, and leave with it) and came out to my light dangling, and the front left side of my car mushed…with no car in sight.

My first expression was disbelief, and thankfully some guy across the street called out to me “It was a truck, they just took off. I have video.” I went across to talk to him, and he sent me the few second video (that later I saw showed the truck leaving the scene), and I asked him for details.
He told me it had been a “Lucky Truck Rental” truck and that they had turned left at the corner.

With nothing to lose before I called the cops, I walked to the corner and looked down the block. Surprisingly, the truck was halfway down the block pulled over at a hydrant (what they had been trying to do when they hit me) while one person ran into a convenience store.

I approached the van (with my camera on and recording, of course), and saw a young(ish) kid behind the wheel, and I said:
Me: “You hit my car and left”
Driver: “What?
M: “You hit my car and left. That’s a hit and run. I’m calling the cops.”
D: “No, I’m sorry. Don’t call. I’ll pay cash.”
Meanwhile his coworker (henceforth known as C)  had come back from the store, and they started talking in their native tongue.

Since I already had on tape his basic confession (with “I’m sorry” instead of “I don’t know what you are talking about”) as well as videoing his license plate, the address of the rental company, and his registration, plus the scuff marks on the vehicle, I figured I have nothing to lose, and told them to meet me at the collision place I use, just two blocks away.

When we got to the collision place C asked me not to film it…and I told him that I most certainly was going to film it.
While waiting for an estimate, D & C got a call from their boss (B) and they put me on the phone with him…he had the nerve to ask me:
B: “Can you let C and the van go to do a delivery. D will stay with you”
M: “No. If the truck leaves, I call the cops.”

The mechanic comes out and tells them that it’ll be expensive, around $2,000 to fix my car up to how it was before the accident.
I turned to D & C and asked them again:
M: “You sure you don’t want me to call the cops? This is what insurance is for. They’ll cover it.”
C: “No. We’ll pay for it.”

And so became a two+ hour of waiting…first for the Boss to show up, and then the haggling…

They wanted to pay $400 cash, and come back later to pay the rest. I told them they needed to pay it all before they left…and then came the laughable part when the boss turns to me and says:
B: “We’ll pay half now, and come back next week to pay the rest. Trust me.”
M: “Trust you? I lost all trust when he HIT AND RAN.”

The problem became that the boss wouldn’t put down a dime for his workers, and the two workers were both young and had not much more than starter debit cards…so when they’d go to the bank they were limited to just $400 withdrawal for the day.

They managed to scrounge most of the money together, between D & C, some cash and some on a credit card.

At this point I got all three of their licenses as collateral that they wouldn’t cancel the credit card and try to renege on their debts, and found out the real reason why they didn’t want the cops called…the driver was a teenager driving on his permit.

I gave the car in yesterday and will hopefully have it back within a day or two to the same status that it was Friday morning.

And if they cancel out that Credit Card…I’m sure the cops would be more than interested to see the video I have of them paying cash and agreeing to pay for the damages.

Tales Of A Pizza Shop — #Fail

I am not going to name the store, because while they did do horrible things, they don’t deserve a public naming (in private I’d call them out in a heartbeat).

Here are a few stories that happened, all in the same pizza shop, over the last few days:

  • The manager (henceforth labeled “George”) talking to a worker about he isn’t going to pay her for two days of the week, because of XX, YY, and ZZ. This is while he’s standing at the cash register.
    I think there are probably better places to have that conversation.
  • Huge line waiting to pay, but George keeps taking phone calls. He’s the only cashier.
  • George smokes in the store.
  • George likes listening to cantoral music on his phone. Out loud. And sings along with it.
  • One of his workers (let’s call him “Javier”) is clearly incompetent. But he’s in charge of the pizza oven.
    For example: Someone ordered three slices of pizza, to go. He was handed three separate paper bags…leaving the customer to stack them when he left in order to hold them all. When Javier was asked why he didn’t just use a box, he said: “Oh. I didn’t think of it.”
  • On two different occasions George was arguing with customers over the prices of items. Using lines like: “Here, let me print you a receipt, and show you”…but then still giving them the price they had said it should be.
    Mind you, this store does NOT have prices posted.
    I went there a few times, and was charged two different prices for the same slice of pizza…maybe there was a lunch special in effect one of those times? I’ll never be sure, because…NO SIGNS.
  • Javier was asked: “Is the pizza cheesy?”…to which he replied: “No, we only have what you see here.”…this was repeated multiple times before the person gave up and went to order a falafel instead.

There are more stories, but I’m gonna stop at that…mind you I was only at this store 3 times.

Avi To The Rescue

Yesterday I mentioned that portable jumper cable to keep in your trunk, and a few days after I got it, it already came in handy.

I was driving home from work and saw a car parked on the side of the street, with the hood up, and cables in hand…the universal sign for “Help!”.

I pull up in front of him, and pull out my fancy looking case, and ask him if he wants to give it a try.

After giving it (and me) a strange look, since we are all used to that second car being there, he said that he’d give it a shot.

We hooked it up to his battery, he gave the engine a start, and less than 90 seconds after I had pulled up I was already driving away, with both our cars in working order.

So go ahead and buy the tools you need to keep your car, and those around you, in running order!