Jacking the World

Day 29 of the #PNIWritingChallenge (second to last!!!) asks:

When you go into a bank or store, do you plan a heist while waiting your turn?

This is something I do everywhere I go. My Companion is highly entertained by this at times, others he rolls his eyes. I’m trying to think of examples, but this habit is so ingrained that I’m not sure I know when I’m doing it anymore.

Oo! Got one! We were driving by one of those camper dealerships. You know the kind I’m sure. They’re usually just off the highway and there’s a sea of motor homes.

Me, casually, from a silent ride to: “So if you’re ever running from the cops and go by one of these places you could easily pop a camper door and hide out.”

My Companion, less casually: “What?”

Me with a professorial tone: “Just jimmy the door, making sure not to damage it too much as that would give you away if the cops came through looking for you. You know the dealership can’t have an alarm on every one of those things. Don’t steal one as they may be LoJacked and they’d find you. Think about it! That would have to be one of the more comfortable hide outs.”

My Companion: “Jesus.”


I have no idea why My Companion would be running from the police. He has a highly ethical security job and it would be silly to put a lifetime of large┬ásalary at risk for one payday that probably wouldn’t equal his earning capabilities. For some reason I guess I thought he should know he has options if all hell breaks loose.


When I’ve worked for other people, and they had security cameras and the like, I’m one of the first ones to figure out where the blind spots are. Not that I would plan a heist where I work, that’s just idiotic, but it’s always good to know where one can duck under to make a quick phone call or something.

Stores in general are similar. I grant them points for trying but there’s a reason they still have losses on a regular basis. Restaurants, too. Some of those are inside jobs, trust me. The employees know where those security cameras are.


Banks not so much. They’re safe from my mental meanderings. There are too many unknown unknowns, to quote the scary war guys from the George W Bush era.

I don’t assume that all banks have a pressure sensor under the vault floor but why not guess that and call it good?

Honestly, in this day and age, if one wants to steal money, there are far easier ways to do that. Just ask my character Brad “Zero” Witson in At Wit’s End. Computers are the way to go, especially if one is capable of wiping their tracks and leaving naught but a puff of smoke to show they’d been there.

I learned a lot about breaking and entering from John Sandford, author of three amazing series – Davenport, Kidd, and Flowers. It’s mostly the Kidd series that I’m thinking of as there is a lot of breaking and entering and intellectual espionage going on and it’s told from the perspective of the guys doing the B&E. Of course they have moral reasons for doing what they do … right? Not so much.

LuEllen the jewel thief is one of my favorite characters of all time.

The tech in those books is ridiculously out of date, of course, but they’re still a fantastic read.

So, yes, #PNIWritingChallenge, I’m constantly planning heists. If you’re not careful, your house may be next! Assuming a writing challenge can have a house …


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