Won’t someone think of the children?

December 16th, 2010 · 57 comments

Part 2 in our “How to be the worst neighbor ever” series comes to us courtesy of Chris in Fort Worth, Texas.

When he first saw the note go up in his apartment complex, says Chris, “I thought it was pretty funny, but it wasn’t until the thief wrote a response that I had to take a picture.”

[Typewritten:} Stop taking my newspapers, you goddamn jerk.

related: All the news that’s fit to steal

FILED UNDER: Dallas/Fort Worth · neighbors · newspaper · rebuttals · spelling and grammar police · stealing · Won't somebody think of the children?

57 responses so far ↓

  • #1   Katie

    Well-read? Perhaps he should pay attention to what he reads…there ARE children, not there IS. Looks like the joke is on him!

    Dec 16, 2010 at 9:53 pm   rating: 47  small thumbs up

    • #1.1   FeRD bang

      Hey, he/she said well-read, not written!

      (Although, I have to admit, abusing “there’s” as a plural contraction is an infraction I’m frequently guilty of, as well. Can’t recall ever being called out on it. *shrug* What’s the alternative, really? “Ther’re?” Ugh.)

      Dec 17, 2010 at 6:46 am   rating: 12  small thumbs up

    • #1.2   Alex T. Valencic

      There are times when a contraction is neither necessary nor appropriate. Such as when saying “there are”.

      Dec 17, 2010 at 9:26 am   rating: 14  small thumbs up

    • #1.3   bowloftoast bang


      (Kurtz dies)

      Dec 17, 2010 at 11:42 pm   rating: 5  small thumbs up

    • #1.4   jason

      “There’re” is fine.

      Dec 18, 2010 at 1:48 pm   rating: 1  small thumbs up

    • #1.5   Alex T. Valencic

      You know that whole “grammar nazi” tag? This is one of those cases. “There’re” is not a legitmate English contraction. No more contractions for you!

      Dec 20, 2010 at 4:46 pm   rating: 5  small thumbs up

  • #2   farcical aquatic ceremony

    Hmmm…“there’s children”, says the “well-read individual.” Guess we’re talking about USA Today and not the New York Times, eh?

    Dec 16, 2010 at 9:53 pm   rating: 42  small thumbs up

  • #3   april

    I was just going to say the exact same thing Katie. The mis-placed capitals kill me too.

    Dec 16, 2010 at 9:55 pm   rating: 1  small thumbs up

    • #3.1   Bad, bad Zoot!

      Won’t SOMEone think of the gigglebraxing???

      Dec 16, 2010 at 10:10 pm   rating: 21  small thumbs up

    • #3.2   The Elf

      And you shouldn’t start a sentence with “and”.

      Dec 17, 2010 at 9:33 am   rating: 10  small thumbs up

    • #3.3   Rhamza

      Actually it is okay to start a sentence with and, you just have to be careful to include all the needed information.

      This was told to me by my professor, who teaches at PCC in Arizona.

      Dec 17, 2010 at 4:14 pm   rating: 3  small thumbs up

  • #4   karen

    so teaching children to swear is wrong, but teaching them to steal is okay.

    Dec 16, 2010 at 10:02 pm   rating: 78  small thumbs up

    • #4.1   la B

      Also okay is teaching said children to improperly use grammar, punctuation, and capitalization…

      Dec 16, 2010 at 10:28 pm   rating: 12  small thumbs up

    • #4.2   Natty

      I got tired of someone stealing my paper. After I had it delivered a 2nd time on a few days I kept the bag and rolled the paper back up and placed it out for the take. I added a special gift from my cats too. Would have loved to see the face when they dumped the paper out on the table and cat poop fell out!

      Dec 16, 2010 at 11:54 pm   rating: 38  small thumbs up

    • #4.3   divaandwriter bang

      I’m with Natty. The cat poop idea is great. Adding a smidgen of canned tuna to it is even better: a sudden assault on the nose added to the yuck factor.

      Dec 17, 2010 at 10:54 am   rating: 2  small thumbs up

    • #4.4   CremeBrulee

      Wait – you’re saying you need to add tuna to cat shit to make it smell bad? Cat shit is one of the worst smells on the planet.

      Dec 17, 2010 at 12:29 pm   rating: 10  small thumbs up

    • #4.5   anglophile

      Cat pee is much worse than cat shit.


      Dec 17, 2010 at 1:59 pm   rating: 12  small thumbs up

  • #5   The Great Joe Bivins


    So menacing! One day instead of just stealing the paper he should steal it and then wrap a dead fish in it and put it back.

    Then another day he should buy a huge stack of papers from a newsvendor and stack them in front of the guy’s door so he can’t get out.

    Then he’s not just a paper thief. He’s a supervillain.

    Dec 16, 2010 at 10:08 pm   rating: 68  small thumbs up

    • #5.1   H Bomb

      Or the two neighbors could come to a polite arrangement to share the paper. But this, I fear, would come to an untimely end…

      “Oh hi, you like to read the paper as well? Well then how abouts lets share. I’ll read it, then you can read it,” began Neighbor 1. “NO NO NO!” interrupted neighbor 2. “You’re going to fill in the sudoku, you child-hating, ill-read socialist!”

      That’s how I picture it, anyway.

      Dec 16, 2010 at 10:32 pm   rating: 7  small thumbs up

    • #5.2   Madrias

      I was thinking of filling the paper with a good dump, instead, but a fish will do. Thanks for the idea of the paper stack, too.

      Dec 16, 2010 at 10:40 pm   rating: 2  small thumbs up

    • #5.3   AuntyBron

      Fish is better, Mad. Poo stinks for a while but disperses much faster (assuming you get rid of the poo) than fish. Fish stench hangs for days. And if you blast it with air freshener, you get the stench of flower-scent fish. Yum!

      Dec 17, 2010 at 12:13 am   rating: 8  small thumbs up

    • #5.4   Madrias

      Then rotten fish has to be so much better.

      Dec 17, 2010 at 12:22 pm   rating: 0  small thumbs up

    • #5.5   Dixie

      Poo is easier to get rid of, as you can just dump it in the toilet and flush. You can’t flush a fish down the toilet, so it’s either hanging around in the trash can for a while or the newspaper thief will have to make a special trip to dispose of it – and still come home to the smell.

      Jan 16, 2011 at 1:46 pm   rating: 0  small thumbs up

  • #6   Henry

    If I was the victim of the theft, I would leave it to the newspaper delivery person and the thief to have it out. Newspaper delivery people can be vicious when you call in with a complaint, make it a complaint that is neither your fault or the delivery person’s, and they’ll go apeshit for sure.
    If the customer would report his paper as not received, they’ll be bringing him a new one, probably using the same carrier and possibly deducting from the carrier’s account. So yeah, the delivery person could have a real interest in this.

    Dec 16, 2010 at 10:35 pm   rating: 11  small thumbs up

    • #6.1   James L.

      This is O.K. advice if you know who is stealing the newspaper. If you don’t know who the thief is, why get the delivery guy involved? This person is making crap wages as it is. It’s not his fault you have bad neighbors.

      Constantly making the delivery guy come out and possibly pay for replacement papers out of his own pocket may only result in getting your subscription cancelled.

      Dec 17, 2010 at 9:54 am   rating: 9  small thumbs up

    • #6.2   Henry

      I’ve had problems with a big-city paper out here in the suburbs. The delivery guy would be too lazy to get out of his car (I had a paper box with their name on it, provided by the paper, they told me at headquarters that it would ensure proper placement of the paper) but the guy insisted on throwing the paper from his car. It would wind up in a snowbank, in front of the neighbors, possibly stolen, possibly used by kids in a game of kick-the-can on their way to school—who knows what would happen to the papers.
      I got tired of the daily calls that whipped him into shape, but but it was worth it to get the paper in the box. Then that guy quit (surprise, surprise) and the whole ordeal started again with a new carrier, so I cancelled the subscription and now I read it online for free.
      The paper delivery guy has a responsibility to leave the paper in a safe, accessible location. Maybe the subscriber has a mail slot the delivery person could use, if they’d just walk ten extra feet.
      Call the newspaper office, tell them that they’re going to lose a subscriber if they can’t guarantee that the paper will be safe. I guarantee they’ll figure out a way to get you the paper!

      Dec 17, 2010 at 4:07 pm   rating: 7  small thumbs up

    • #6.3   Canthz_B bang

      Agreed. I never search for my paper. It’s not my job, and I ordered delivery, not a daily Easter Egg hunt.
      I just call and tell them my paper wasn’t on my patio, and they send someone out with another one.
      I’m sure that after several calls, the carrier became really interested in what was happening to my paper…assuming he or she actually delivered it.

      Dec 18, 2010 at 1:33 pm   rating: 2  small thumbs up

  • #7   Harmy G

    That newspaper was rather tasty.

    Dec 16, 2010 at 10:57 pm   rating: 4  small thumbs up

    • #7.1   DrBombay

      It does indeed recall the case of this site’s most ubiquitous and maligned catchphrase.

      Dec 17, 2010 at 6:48 am   rating: 4  small thumbs up

  • #8   TippingCows

    He didn’t capitalize goddamn, so it’s ok. It’s not referring to anyone’s god specifically. Just random, newspaper stealing gods I’m sure.

    Dec 17, 2010 at 2:28 am   rating: 16  small thumbs up

  • #9   Daniel

    Somewhere in that building there are children swearing and reading the New York Times, maybe even swearing AT the New York Times …

    Dec 17, 2010 at 5:35 am   rating: 9  small thumbs up

    • #9.1   FeRD bang

      We can only hope!

      Dec 17, 2010 at 6:48 am   rating: 5  small thumbs up

    • #9.2   Bunnee

      I doubt it, not in Fort Worth. (and I live here, so I’m allowed to say that)

      Dec 17, 2010 at 9:02 am   rating: 2  small thumbs up

    • #9.3   Rhamza

      I live here too, but just not in Texas. ;P (sorry, I had to say it)

      Dec 17, 2010 at 4:19 pm   rating: 1  small thumbs up

  • #10   Woman on the Verge bang

    This is really mystifying. Chiding someone on their vulgarity and admitting you are stealing their paper. I think I’d be afraid of this person. They obviously have multiple personalities, some of which are children.

    Dec 17, 2010 at 8:28 am   rating: 21  small thumbs up

    • #10.1   pony girl

      @WotV, Your comment brought to mind that little girl from ‘The Bad Seed.’ The original one.
      Excuse me, I need to go lock all my doors and windows.

      Dec 17, 2010 at 6:11 pm   rating: 4  small thumbs up

  • #11   Bunnee

    After the “I’ll never stop!”, I swear I heard a “muahahaha” evil laugh and envisioned a pair of hands being rubbed together, all evil-like.

    Dec 17, 2010 at 9:01 am   rating: 14  small thumbs up

    • #11.1   The Elf

      Yeah, he’s like the Terminator. He just won’t stop! That’s what he does! It’s ALL that he does! You can’t stop him! He’ll wade through you! He’ll reach into your house and steal that newspaper from your fuckin’ hands!

      He’ll be back.

      Dec 17, 2010 at 9:38 am   rating: 14  small thumbs up

  • #12   Captain Calypso

    I didn’t know that the word “goddamn” was harmful to children.

    Dec 17, 2010 at 10:15 am   rating: 1  small thumbs up

  • #13   pony girl

    If you don’t want your children exposed to vulgar language, don’t teach them to read.

    Dec 17, 2010 at 10:48 am   rating: 39  small thumbs up

    • #13.1   Woman on the Verge bang

      pony girl, I love you. I have thumbed you with all of the passive aggressive love I could muster.

      Dec 17, 2010 at 5:08 pm   rating: 3  small thumbs up

    • #13.2   pony girl


      That is the best Christmas present!

      Dec 17, 2010 at 6:09 pm   rating: 2  small thumbs up

    • #13.3   Canthz_B bang

      If you don’t want your children exposed to vulgar language, don’t teach them to steal newspapers for you.

      Dec 18, 2010 at 1:37 pm   rating: 3  small thumbs up

  • #14   Divvitar

    Yeah, these kids are probably playing “Grand Theft Auto” at age 8 anyway. I’m sure a “goddamn” now and then isn’t going to knock them off their felonious career path.

    Dec 17, 2010 at 12:53 pm   rating: 3  small thumbs up

  • #15   April

    What kills me is that the thief felt the need to criticize the man for using a curse word. Like stealing is better or less bad than cursing.

    Dec 17, 2010 at 1:49 pm   rating: 7  small thumbs up

    • #15.1   se

      Wow, what an astute observation! I’d like to give you 6 thumbs up, but that might be fishy, so I’ll give you none.

      Dec 17, 2010 at 2:19 pm   rating: 14  small thumbs up

    • #15.2   Janellionaire

      Wow really? I didn’t catch the irony until right now. You’re right, stealing is neither better nor less bad than cursing. Thanks for clearing that up for the rest of us.

      Dec 17, 2010 at 5:49 pm   rating: 9  small thumbs up

    • #15.3   April

      No one said I was pointing anything out. I was just commenting on how I found something about it outrageously funny and ironic. Get over yourself because you are not as clever as you think you are.

      Dec 18, 2010 at 11:31 am   rating: 2  small thumbs up

    • #15.4   Canthz_B bang

      Yup. Cursing is punishable under the law exactly the same as stealing. Everyone knows that.

      The jails are full of potty-mouthed people and thieves, so that proves it.
      I’d rather be a thief though…you can’t pawn a curse word. ;-)

      (yeah, yeah…I know that’s not what you’re trying to say. get a grip already.)

      Clue time: “better” and “less bad” mean the same thing, Your Redundancy.

      Dec 21, 2010 at 5:15 am   rating: 0  small thumbs up

  • #16   Pterosaur

    Wait, let me get this straight. This guy reads his news on… paper?

    Perhaps if some rapscallion has absconded with his periodical, he should bustle his horse and buggy to the General Store for another.

    Or, you know, get an online subscription.

    Dec 17, 2010 at 6:37 pm   rating: 9  small thumbs up

  • #17   cleanuponaisle2

    In high school, for whatever reason, my little brother got really into Current Events… and he’d absent-mindedly pick up the paper from a neighbor’s doorstep outside the elevator of our apartment complex… it wasn’t until a few weeks later, after learning the pissed-off neighbor was peeping through the peep-hole, that Newspaper Subscriber Man, had had enough and didn’t appreciate it. . . He came out in his robe one morning and screamed, “I don’t care if you’re in high school!! Get your own damned paper!” And snatched it out of my brother’s hand, RIGHT before the elevator doors closed… I was still shell-shocked. My brother replied with a happy-go-lucky, “I didn’t even realize I was stealing his paper…” … *head scratch*… The best part? We got our OWN paper delivered EVERY morning.

    Dec 17, 2010 at 10:49 pm   rating: 3  small thumbs up

    • #17.1   Canthz_B bang

      Kleptomania sneaks up on you from behind.
      Outraged victims confront you face-to-face.

      Dec 18, 2010 at 4:40 pm   rating: 4  small thumbs up

  • #18   Zhopka

    I’m thinking the response might actually be from two different persons. The first one is the capitalized I’LL NEVER STOP guy. No signature, no nothing, just sharp corners on all letters. As in “take that!”. The second is the uuuh!-I’ve-got-to-add-my-two-cents! guy, who just couldn’t walk by without some righteous commenting.

    And I’m not sure which of them is worse.

    Dec 19, 2010 at 12:17 pm   rating: 3  small thumbs up

  • #19   Carpensm @ A Life Without Ice Cream

    LOL… that “well read individual” needs a grammar lesson! Maybe they really should spend more time reading the paper!

    Dec 23, 2010 at 8:56 am   rating: 0  small thumbs up

    • #19.1   Mama Wrench

      You realize that you just criticized someone else’s grammar while using “they” as an indefinite singular pronoun, right?

      Dec 23, 2010 at 8:03 pm   rating: 1  small thumbs up

  • #20   Mama Wrench

    Yes, because it’s WAY worse to swear around kids than to exhibit acceptance of theft!

    Dec 23, 2010 at 8:01 pm   rating: 0  small thumbs up


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