Saturday, April 5, 2014

Not Smart And Definitely Not Final

Today after an unannounced trip to Costco (the WORST place to go on the weekends) Anthony and I decided to head to Smart and Final (a grocery store for those of you East Coasters) to pick up a few more items. I wasn't carrying a purse, so I put my wallet, phone and shopping list in the red basket as we walked around the store collecting items. After we got everything we needed, we proceeded to the checkout. As I was unloading everything onto the belt, I realized that I had forgot something so I told Anthony to finish up and I would be right back. I reminded him about my personal items that were in the basket and scurried away to pick up that Tahini paste I forgot. (I know, I know who actually buys, let alone forgets the Tahini paste?)

Unfortunately, they didn't have Tahini paste so I ran back to the register just in time for Anthony to hand my my wallet to pay. As the lady was finishing up bagging and we were just about ready to walk away, I asked Anthony if he had my phone in his pocket. He said he didn't because he handed it to me. Clearly he didn't because it wasn't in my hand and I wasn't carrying a purse so I asked him to check again. Nothing. I told him to check the basket that he put on the ground as I asked the cashier to check around her register. Nothing. SHIT!!!!

I didn't know what to do, I felt lost without that damn phone! (Sad, I know). We went out to the car to check if it was in there even though I knew it wasn't because I was Googling "Tahini paste' in aisle 5 earlier. Luckily I had downloaded the 'Where's My iPhone' app and had Anthony pull it up on his phone. I logged into my account and low and behold my iPhone popped up. It was still turned on and in Smart and Final. After Anthony called it a few times, we decided to head back into the store. At this time, the iPhone was shut off and it was going straight to voicemail DOUBLE SHIT!!!! Once inside, we asked to speak with a manager and immediately I felt like I was on CSI. I was running up and down every aisle hoping to catch someone who either looked suspicious or who was blatantly using my phone. Nothing. While I was wildly running up and down the aisles, Anthony managed to find the manager and tell him our situation. He asked for our receipt so he could pull up the security camera footage for the exact time we checked out and see if he could figure it out. Guess who else wanted in on this little CSI fantasy of ours? The Smart and Final manager, that's who. I could just tell by the look on his face that this was the most exciting thing to happen all week. Lucky for me and my other CSI agent, Anthony, he let us in the double mirrored, secured office to watch the tape with him. This was getting good! So here we all are, three wannabe agents, huddled around a desk watching the footage of Anthony unloading the basket then forgetting to take out my cell phone (no comment), then placing the basket on the ground. And then it sat there.....the manager was hoping it wasn't one of his employees because he would have to fire them on the spot and I was hoping it was one of his employees because at least then I would know where my phone was. Then out of nowhere, this kid walks over while his mom is checking out, looks down at the basket, kicks it, ponders a bit, looks around and then bends down and puts it in his pocket! That little punk ass kid!

I was shocked and confused as to what to do now. Good thing the Smart and Final manager had watched way more CSI episodes than I because he suggested that we text the phone and say that we saw him on camera taking the phone and if he didn't return it within an hour we were calling the police. Genius. We thanked our fellow agent, gave him Anthony's number and went outside to wait in the squad car, er my car. Sorry, I was getting way to into it at this point. We had a suspect! I was getting so excited/nervous that I even got the red blotches on my chest. (Mom- you know exactly what I am talking about). Just as I was trying to think of our next move, my iPhone turned back on and the locater told us it was around the corner. Without even looking at each other, we knew what to do. It was now out mission to get the phone back, with or without our fellow agent/Smart and Final manager.

We drove around the block a few times until the ping on the app told us we were right in front of where my phone was. We pulled over in front of this ratty looking apartment building and looked at each other. Should we call the cops? Just as we were trying to figure out if 911 would be appropriate in this type of situation or if we would just call the local police department, we saw that little punk ass kid from the surveillance tape! My heart was racing. The kid came outside looking scared just as another kid pulled up on a bike. The bad kid who stole my phone kept reaching in his pocket and finally pulled out a black iPhone. I was a little discouraged because I had a pink case on mine and at that moment I thought we had the wrong suspect. But Anthony was confident and hopped out of the car. Just as he was walking up to them he overheard the bad kid tell the kid on the bike (we'll call him witness #1) something about the cops and a video at Smart and Final. Bingo! My brave man (mind you, this kid was probably ten years old) walked right up to him and witness #1 and said, "Did you find that phone at Smart and Final? You better give it back to me!" (He knew it was mine because even though bad kid ditched the case, you can't hide the giant crack in the screen- which makes me ponder why he would even take a cracked phone?) And just like that the bad kid handed it back and we drove away like two CSI agents who had just solved the crime. Of course we called our fellow crime stopper at Smart and Final and told him how it all went down. It was a proud moment for us all.

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