On Blocks

So last night / this morning someone stole the right two wheels off of my car.

You read that right.

I came home at 2am, parked. Nothing out of the ordinary. I woke up around noon and looked out to check the weather; I noticed that the nose of my car was leaning forward more than usual and figured maybe I ran over a bolt or something. When I grabbed my laundry and attempted to leave around 5pm, I checked the tire to see if it was flat…and both were gone. Instead, the right side of the car is chocked up on top of a granite block. Even the lug nuts were gone.

Shock, despair, anger.

Called the cops, made my report, got a case number. They dispatched an officer to dust for prints. There were no prints. However, a neighbor saw that I was at the car with a cop, and came over to offer an eyewitness account. Apparently, at 7:30 to 8am, she had her apartment door open to let in the breeze. She stepped out onto the balcony and noticed a man at the car; he saw her, looked nervous, and then carried a tire in each hand to his car and drove off. She thought he was my car’s owner and didn’t think anything of it. The description she offered was rather generic: light-skinned black male, bald, medium height and stocky build. She got no description of the car.

I have no hope of getting my wheels back. By my estimate, it’s $150 out of my pocket to replace them. The wheels were nothing special: cheap stock rims, cheap tires that were nearing a replacement. Why my car was targeted, I don’t know. If it was at 7:30am, then yeah, I don’t know. If it was during the night, then the lighting in the lot, the shadow on the right side of the car, the right side facing the street and away from the apartment building, would all make sense.

I’ll need a ride to pick up some spare lug nuts, get a set of locking lug nuts, and top off the air in my full-sized spare and my donut spare so I can limp around tomorrow to get new wheels. Until then, I’m stranded, deflated, defeated.

Snap, Crackle, Pop

It’s funny to me that I was raving about Kasbah and how neat it is a month and a half ago. Funny that. I mean, it is a nifty place, and it has its charm. Yet as much as I was a regular there, it just didn’t have any staying power with me. I felt home there for a brief spell, but the little “inconveniences” built up. Funny how shifting prices, bathroom keys, cruddy wireless, crowded and spartan porch seating, and slow service can change attitudes. Funny, that.

So I discovered something a few weeks ago. For the past few months, my knees have been popping every time I climb the stairs to my apartment or step up onto something. This is the same thing they did the last time I rode my bicycle – every step on the pedal would cause a knee (at that time, my left) to pop loudly; the next few days, I was sore.

Well, so here’s my knees doing the popping thing. A few weeks ago, I went to Eeyore’s Birthday down at Pease Park; the whole day was spent just kinda drifting and walking lazily, sitting for a while, walking some more, meeting friends, people-watching, walking some more. Typical Eeyore’s stuff.

Two days later, after a little soreness, I came home from work and ascended the stairs to my apartment — no popping. I stopped halfway up and tried to figure if I was going deaf. No deafness. I stepped. Nothing. Went the rest of the way up. Nothing. And it was then that I learned something: the popping goes away with exercise, something I’ve known, but it’s now brought home to me. Walking will lubricate cartilage, make it supple, and remove any little spurs on the bone ends.

Consider me schooled.