I live in a pretty crappy neighborhood (yes it was crappy before I moved in. Shut up). It’s a blue collar section on the edge of a nasty housing project, so even our sad, small material possessions incite burning class envy in the breasts of the various brown youths who pass through here on their way to Symphony Hall (I assume that’s where they’re all going). Our modest homes were once the WalMart for junkies.
But no more. Twenty years ago, when I moved in, I was hearing constant rumors of burglary on our block. The basement window facing away from the road in my house was boarded up by the previous owner, as it had become a regular backdoor for bad guys. I was spared, thank gourd, but I heard it going down on all around me.
Then it stopped. I haven’t heard of a home invasion ’round these parts in ages. I (just now) think I’ve worked out why.
I bought my first 19″ color television in 1983. It cost me $740 (a hell of a lot of money to me then, so I remember well). Five years later, I bought my first VCR, and I think it was over $700, too. And that’s what junkies went for — everybody had them, the few who didn’t wanted them, they were generic and untraceable and could be fenced (I assume) within minutes for a nice chunk of change.
Thanks to China, do you even pay a hundred bucks for a 19″ TV now? Or a DVD player? Look around; are there any other goods in your house that are small and portable, easy to find, valuable and hard to trace?
Thank you, little yellow people.