Friday, April 25, 2008





I have been the victim of a crime.

Not a violent crime.

Not a hate crime.

But a crime, nonetheless.

Yesterday, after a grueling day at work, I headed out to my car. Since I forgot my umbrella, I had to walk the whole way in the pouring rain. Once I was safely ensconced in my sweet-smelling car, I started the engine, turned on my headlights, and flipped the switch for my windshield wipers.

Then, something very strange happened.

One lone wiper rose up and lazily swish-swashed against the windshield. I blinked twice.

Still just one wiper.

“Why is it not working?” I growled at my windshield.

Angrily, I swung my car door open, stepped into the downpour, and peered at the driver’s side of my windshield.

And there was my answer.

It was not working. Because it was NOT THERE!

Someone had stolen my windshield wiper arm and blade. Completely removed it off my car. All that was left was sad little silver nub.

My car had been stripped, violated, and vandalized.

In a vague sort of a daze, I wandered back into my office, completely soaked.

“Hey, Cheryl. Can you come look at this?” I asked my co-worker.

Two minutes later we stood shoulder to shoulder in the sweeping rain as she stared down at the remaining nub.

“Yep. It’s gone. Sorry for your loss.” She patted me sweetly on the shoulder.

We went back into the office, tracking great pools of water on the carpet, while I tried to get a hold of Brett.

My loving husband had inadvertently turned his phone off and was home enjoying a hot soak in the Jacuzzi while I desperately tried to get a hold of him.

Eventually, I got a hold of Mom and Gary who were gracious enough to come and rescue me. I knew I couldn’t drive home in the rain with only the passenger side wiper functional.

At home, I explained the situation to my husband who quickly proclaimed the world full of “thieves, cheaters, and scammers. Curses upon their heads!” (Okay, the last past is dramatic license, but the rest is true)

Quick calls to the insurance agent assured me our policy covered vandalism and would replace the missing arm and blade at no cost. The insurance agent noted that the perpetrator must have been carrying tools, since the wiper arms are screwed in tight to the car.

“So, no one saw this guy trying to rip your car apart, in broad daylight, huh?” she asked.

“Guess not,” I replied, thinking how our parking lot is on a busy thoroughfare in Rockford.

Brett drove to me to work today where everyone had an opinion as to why someone would steal only one wiper arm and blade.

“Maybe he’ll fence it for money.”

“Maybe he needed a driver’s side wiper for his own car.”

“Maybe he wants to recycle it and get the money.”

Brett finally convinced me to file a police report. I called and talked to a very nice officer.

Officer: So, your windshield wiper arms and blades were stolen?

Me: Just on the driver’s side.

Officer: Just on the driver’s side? Wait, they only stole one?

Me: Yes, the passenger side one is still there.

Officer: They only stole one?

Me: Yes.

Officer: One side? Huh.

Me: I was kind of shocked.

Officer: That’s really weird. I mean, I hear a lot of weird things that get stolen. But this is really weird. I don’t think I’ve ever head this before.

Me: Yeah. Um…?

Officer: Oh! Right. Here’s the report number.

So, today Brett and Gary are tag-team driving up to the Ford dealership to get a new wiper arm and blade put on the car. And I’m currently without my car. Again.

At this time, I’d like to observe a moment of silence for the lone arm and blade I had only five short months to get to know. I thought I had more time! There is so much more I would have said!

Ah, well.

Thoughts and comments for the wiper arm’s widow are much appreciated.


psturg said...

I mourn your loss. We grieve with the widow/widower (? man widow).

Alice said...

Everyone--Give your windshield wipers a hug tonight. You never know what can happen.

Captainswife said...

Wow...I can hardly believe the depths that some people will sink to. It really makes you wonder about our society today! I mean seriously, that you would not just drive by leaning over and looking out the passenger side of your windshield is BEYOND ME!!!! Why, any respectable New Jersian would have had no trouble doing that! I must put it off to the fact that you are merely living in quaint little Illinois where people obey the laws...oh wait, you had your wiper stolen! Man...I'm so glad I moved from there! It's turning into such a rough city!!

Heidi said...

Sounds like my neighborhood. See my post called midnight fun.
Thankfully it is not a strict Fundy Baptist because it is being allowed to get re-married.
sorry, couldn't resist.

Robin Hayes said...

Heidi - you are too funny! I would have never thought of that!!!