Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The bike (from Bubba's journal - Thursday, November 9, 1989)

Today I was asked by a "friend" to "watch" her bike while she went inside of the store to cash her check. The bike was unusual, being a "bicycle built for two." While she was inside taking care of her business, the bike attracted the attention of three young "gang bangers." They began asking me questions about the bike, such as: did the bike belong to me? Who did it belong to? Was I watching it? Etc. Their intentions to "have" the bike became quite apparent. To leave my "post" to go inside to warn the woman of the developing situation would have been equivalent to abandoning it. It would have provided the youngsters with the opportunity that they were wishing for. In short order, one of them who had been faking such high level of interest and admiration in the bike, mounted it, to "see how it felt." This was it. As he displayed his intention to "ride it," I made my move to prevent the bike from moving. As I did so, a voice from behind me, close enough to whisper said, "Don't get yourself hurt behind this bicycle, Pops." When I turned around to see what kind of threat he was posing, I saw her just emerging from the store. She sees her bike in the act of being taken, and screams, "No." She immediately gives chase, but it is too late.

When the realization that her bike is gone hits her, she naturally turns to me and accuses me of literally giving the culprits her bike. This is the only logical interpretation that she can make according to what she saw.

What she saw was a guy riding off with her bike while I turned my back the other way. She couldn't have heard the threat made by the other one.

She threatened that I would not get away with that; that she was going to get some men that would deal with me, and placed the value of the bike at $600.00. She was unwilling to listen to anything that I had to say, and at one point mentioned the word "kill."

This happened just before dark, and I usually end my day when it gets dark, so I decided, due to the circumstances, to end it a little earlier.

The next day, around 2:00pm, she showed up in the company of another woman. She beckoned for me to approach her, and I did. When I met her, she told me that she and her brother had run into a youngster riding that bike later that same day that it had been taken and took it back. Her purpose for finding me was to inform me that I could now disregard the threats that she had made to me. I appreciated that. I paid a small price for a hell of a lesson.

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