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Some Things Can Make A

Tuesday, June 04 2002

Some things can make a grown man cry, and I mean this with the utmost sincerity. I mentioned the other day that someone had stolen my skateboard, and how upset I was about it.

About ten or twenty minutes ago I was finishing up some changes on a new ColdFusion tutorial. My attention was undivided towards finishing the article. I’d had been struggling with it for some time, and was highly focused on getting it done so I could go to sleep. My office is pretty dark as was the rest of the house. Carrie had gone to sleep early.

Around 10:45PM I started getting paranoid, thinking I’d heard a noise on the porch. It’s not abnormal to hear noise; we share a staircase with my neighbor and he often comes home around this time, but since someone had just stolen from me I was a bit on edge, assuming they might come back to take my shoes this time (they might be worth something to someone, they’re basically my “work on dirty stuff” shoes and are worth little to me now, but they had their day in the sun).

Just as I was figuring out where the nearest phone was in case I had to call an ambulance for whoever was brave enough to make a second visit, woodpecker-like noises started coming from my aquarium. Now, I have two saltwater reef aquariums in my office which I’ll talk about another time, but in one, a particular hermit crab has a certain habit of humping the other hermit crabs in a machine-gun-like fashion. It’s pretty noisy business. Since I was so deep in my work, I figured the noises I’d heard were due to this love machine hermit crab.

I posted the article, wrote a blog entry about it, closed my laptop, stood up to go hit the sack, and thought I better check the office window to make sure it was locked. Through the blinds, I caught a glimpse of a shiny new skateboard. Heart attack. Confusion. The noises I had heard actually were from someone coming to my porch, not Humping Hermit, but this time the noises were from something I could have never guessed.

Some things can make a grown man cry.

It took me about thirty minutes to reach out and pick it up. Like Willy Wonka and the golden ticket, I didn’t believe it. It wasn’t until I got a call from “George” who claimed he was instructed to call me and was told to tell me to “look down on your porch” that I actually opened the door and picked it up. When asked who he really was he said “I’m not at liberty to tell, just following instructions, and besides, you wouldn’t know me anyway.”

A sincere thanks to whoever did this. Now I need to go pay it forward.