Dear cycle thief,
Hope you are enjoying my bike or parts of it that you couldn’t sell. If you’ve sold it in the nether market, the money must have bought you a few pleasures. But, I am straying from the point now, digressing, if you understand the word. That was no aspersion on your education, but just a thought that occurred to me. In your profession, you cannot afford to digress. You cannot head for the bike shed with your chain cutters and suddenly entertain an alternative thought, like “Let me check out the Magnolia tree. Its blossoms are so overwhelmingly beautiful this time of the year”. No. You will be the master of concentration, one-track minded, a Zen of bicycle thievery.
I am being given a replacement bike, having won long and tedious arguments with the insurance company. I really wished I had your phone number because the insurance wanted a photograph of the stolen bicycle and I could have asked you to text me one. You could have been part of the photograph, complete with your hoodie masking your ugly face. I am assuming you have an ugly face because your hoodie would be doing you a double favour then, wouldn’t it? Granted, some thieves are good looking. But they are way above your league. They wear ill-fitting Saville Row suits, crocodile skin shoes and millstone necklaces. They don’t steal small things like bicycles, they steal an entire nation.
I meant to ask before I placed my order for the replacement bike: would you like a mountain bike or a cyclo-cross or a road bike? I mean, it is better you state your preference now because the last two bikes I provided you were obviously not good enough. Would you prefer one of those folding bikes? Much easier to steal, but sadly, like guide dogs, they are allowed inside office buildings. So, you are screwed there. Anyway, let me know. Would you like lights as well and some mud guards? I hate spinning muck off the road onto my clothes and going around as if I had been lashed for some heinous crime I hadn’t committed.
Oh, by the way – the police are not interested. Looks like they have struck bicycle theft off their list of crimes. So, continue to steal without fear, with impunity. In fact, I am seriously considering your profession. It is nearly risk free. Very little effort required. As long as I put my black hoodie on and don’t smile for the CCTV cameras, I am sorted.
‘See, it could be anyone’, the police said. ‘We don’t have a camera pointing directly at the bike shed’, our building security said. ‘My neighbour’s £3,000 bike was stolen just the other day,’ my boss said. It was supposed to make me feel better. After all, my bike was only worth a third of that. Never mind. Like they (I) say, look beyond words, look at intention. Please don’t think I am number dropping to wind you up or to make you feel you have wasted your efforts on a cheap bicycle when there was a much better one for the picking or, dare I say, unpicking? I am telling you all this with an ulterior motive. Read on, I have a plan.
‘You have an excess of £250’, the insurance company said. ‘Collect it from my thief’, I responded. I couldn’t quite figure out why the line went dead after that.
You won’t believe this. The insurance company was offering me a bike which was 30% cheaper than ours. I hope you don’t mind my using the possessive plural here. The least you can do is share the ownership with me, at least on paper. Granted, you own it now. But we didn’t exactly sign an ownership transfer form like the DVLA’s V5C. In fact, this could be a good business model, come to think of it. Knowing that the police, the building security, and everyone else that matters don’t really care, it’s something worth thinking about. Yes, this idea is developing legs (I wanted to say wheels, but then you stole my wheels, didn’t you?)
Do you offer any training? Have you got a website on the dark web or a YouTube channel? If you don’t, start one now or publish an instruction manual. ‘How to steal a bike from idiots for idiots”. See, I even got you a good catchy title. Seriously, shall we start a partnership? I could be your frontman. Your agent, so to speak. You give me a percentage for every bike you steal, and I give some of that to the insurance company to pay for the excess. Now that would really work.
Anyway, enjoy my bike if you still have it. Do not worry if you’re getting tired of it and are ready for a change. A brand spanking new one is on its way. Yes, the locks will be stronger this time. But hey, like they say, locks are for gentlemen.