Listening to Myself

Thursday, July 07, 2005

That Crash and other stuff

My mother-in-law received the following information about the crash from her local police department (I have edited it to remove location details):

The event occurring in this subdivision on July 4th was a reported grand theft of cardboard at a nearby Target store. Three subjects were seen fleeing the area in a Toyota van, which was picked up by an officer a couple blocks away. The officer attempted to stop the vehicle, but the suspects fled into the subdivision where the van flipped onto its side. All three suspects were taken into custody.

So I'm still wondering why the CHP was involved, since this did not touch the freeway at all... and how much cardboard do you have to be stealing to qualify for "grand theft"? Ok, well I just found the relevant section of the California Penal Code (California Penal Code section 487, in case you were wondering) and you need to steal over $400 worth of goods (unless you are making off with a variety of fruits, vegetables, or shellfish, in which case the threshold is $100) in order for the theft to be classified as "grand theft". Unless you are buying boxes at your local U-Haul, isn't cardboard pretty cheap? Especially used cardboard, like you might find in the back of a big box store? I find it hard to believe that someone could even fit $400 worth of used cardboard in the back of a minivan, but maybe used cardboard is far more valuable than I realize. This whole episode is so odd, it doesn't seem like any of it makes sense. I guess people do strange and stupid things every day though.

And moving along... we're back home after a relatively painless drive yesterday. Driving across the LA Basin was slow of course, but the rest was fine. I can't believe how bad the air quality was though - as we were driving by downtown LA on Hwy 5, you could barely see the skyscrapers. Amazing. It seems like you should be able to reach out and grab a handful of the air, it looked so dense. Maybe that's why my eyes were starting to feel rather itchy and sore towards the end of each day... Being gone most of the week has really altered my sense of time though, I keep thinking today is Monday. I keep thinking I have the whole week stretching before me, when really I am about to the next weekend already. It really is rather disorienting.


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