Crime doesn't pay especially when you're not a mastermind

THIS JUST IN. . .

September 01, 1995|By DAN RODRICKS

From our Guilty But Mostly Stupid Files . . . Dateline: Charleston, W.Va. A man cut himself while breaking into an apartment and bled so profusely that he called 911 from the crime scene. Dateline: Santa Cruz, Calif. A local political consultant who said he wanted to "score some buds" from his neighbor's marijuana plants fell off the roof of his house into his neighbor's yard, where he was attacked by a pit bull.

And in Kennedyville, down on the Eastern Shore, there was the burglar who locked himself out of his getaway car. According to the Kent County News, a fellow from Aberdeen broke into a house, took a bunch of loot -- a fax machine, cans of hair spray, some clothes (figure that one out!) -- and loaded them into his car. He spent the night in the house. He came out the next morning and realized something: He had locked the car with the keys inside. What a fix, huh? So you know what this fellow did? Did he get a coat hanger and try to jig open the lock? Did he bust the window and make a quick getaway? No. HE CALLED THE POLICE! TO HELP HIM UNLOCK THE CAR! And Cpl. Bill Dwyer came. He's no dummy, he figured out what had happened. He took this palooka to jail. Bail was set at $25,000.

Sign up now, dine out later

Today's the deadline for local restaurants to sign up for this year's Dining Out For Life, a major fund-raiser for Moveable Feast. The Feast delivers three meals a day, seven days a week, to homebound people with AIDS in the city, and in Baltimore, Howard and Anne Arundel counties. The more than 50 restaurants that participate will give 20 percent of their Oct. 5 receipts to the Feast. (Mount Vernon Stable & Saloon gives half its receipts; its servers donate all their tips, too.) New restaurants participating this year: Polo Grille, Hampton's, Brass Elephant, Papermoon and Tio Pepe. The names of all restaurants will be listed soon in an ad; today's the deadline to make the list. Call 366-LIFE to get on board. As for the rest of you: If you've been intending to chow down at some fancy-schmancy restaurant, Oct. 5 would be the good day.

Out of the picture

I have a Maryland road map with Marvin Mandel's picture, one with Blair Lee III's, one with Harry Hughes' and one with William Donald Schaefer's. I picked up the latest edition from the Department of Transportation at the State Fair yesterday and -- no governor. This guy sticks by his word: Parris Glendening doesn't want his picture plastered all over everything. No cult of personality for this fellow. . . . Checked out Parrot Island, the new and huge "tropical paradise" near Fells Point, and it was some enchanted evening. The weather was nice; it felt like vacation in the South Pacific. We had an hour wait for dinner, so we had beer and nacho supreme. Nacho, nacho, man! . . . Hey, somebody tell the people at the Magic Dish in Arnold that their sign on Ritchie Highway is wrong. It's "Main man," not "Main lobster."

Newsprint addendum

To the secondary (some would say primary) uses of newspapers -- fish wrapping, crab-feast table cover, school-book covers -- we have a new entry, courtesy of an Ocean City handyman: plumber's helper. Battling a blocked-up toilet encountered by new guests in a high-rise condo, the handyman balled up a page of The Sun, flushed the commode and fired in a charge of compressed air behind it. He actually had a how-to-do-it diagram on his toolbox that prescribed the balled-up-newspaper-compressed-air combo. The newsprint, it was explained, does not get soggy and can be used like a battering ram to dislodge a toilet blocker. But our old pal Rick Arnold of John E. Ruth Plumbing, Catonsville, says he's heard of compressed air being used to free up toilet drains, but not as a propellant of balled-up newsprint. Doesn't make much sense to him. "It's not something I would recommend," Rick says. He prefers to use a three-foot "closet auger," or snake. Anyway, the newspaper-compressed-air combo didn't work. The blockage was tough. A previous occupant had flushed a plastic toilet paper spindle, and it got stuck somewhere between bowl and drain pipe. The handyman removed the toilet and melted the spindle with a torch. Sounds like somebody trying to score a little OT, if you ask me.

Toilet seat is down

Speaking of toilets . . . All you people who have been looking for that wooden toilet seat hanging on the utility pole in Jarrettsville, please stop, just stop! It's not there anymore. The seat was hanging by the Grimmel Farm, and Dixie Grimmel says her son, Ed Grimmel, took it down. "It looked like a darn nice toilet seat, too," she says. (I hear she's going to make a Christmas wreath out of it.) By the way, Dixie says to tell everyone to come on up for Silver Queen, tomatoes and lopes, grown right there on the farm. (I bet she'll take best offer on the toilet seat, too.)

Marketing the franchise

Speaking of roadside attractions, my pal Joey Amalfitano says: "Hey, Dan, have you noticed all these young women selling produce on the sides of roads this summer? You know, the ones with the old pickup trucks and lawn chairs, and Smith Hawken T-shirts and shorts, and nice tans, and canvas baseball caps and little rolled sweat socks and work boots? Sure are a lot of them this year. And they all wear the same uniform. What is this, Danny, some sort of franchise?" I think this is an interesting question, demanding further inquiry. Joey, I'll get on it right away.

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