Thursday, August 5, 2010

Perhaps Not the Criminal Mastermind I Thought

In theory, I think I would make an excellent superthief/superspy: moral relativist, flexible relationship with the truth, rationalizer. In reality, as devoted partner points out more often than I would like (though, to be fair, this is a stupid discussion to be having in the first place so perhaps he's right to put me in my place) I am not all that stealthy. I don't blend in with crowds and I haven't learned how to make myself forgettable (though I maintain that the cunning use of wigs would do wonders for my changling-ness). Also, and perhaps more troubling for the current resume I have in case SPECTRE is looking for new hires, is that there are certain scams, albeit minor ones, that just wouldn't occur to me, and I wonder if my big-picture attitude is hurting me or depriving me of lower-level experience.

Yesterday the conductor on my train, who I see at least twice a week, punched a ticket for me without seeing my train pass - several of the conductors do this because they recognize me (bad news for my covertness). This was all the more surprising because it was the first time in August I had seen him, meaning he had no guarantee that I had bought a monthly pass for August and I said as much to him, joking that had I known he wasn't going to check I could have saved myself some money. In reply, he told me that there had been a group of women who were regulars on his train that had done just that: they would buy their monthly passes and show them to him for the first week of the month; then, once they were sure he was going to punch tickets for them without verifying they had passes, they returned their passes for a partial refund and rode the rest of the month for free.

Leaving aside how rude that is - I don't know if conductors could get fired for that sort of thing - it's just the kind of petty crime I don't consider. I'm too busy wondering how far I could joyride in that Ferrari before apprehension and if I could find a way to talk myself out of it. And the sad thing is, as compelling a speaker as I believe myself to be, I absolutely FAIL at seeming pitiable.

I try not to speed beyond the average speeder in traffic because I know I'll actually get stuck with the ticket. Even if I was able to muster some tears for the highway patrol person, which I give myself about even odds for, I doubt I'd be believable, and this is a major failing in my criminal mastermind/secret agent ambitions. Women should be able to call on that, "I'm helpless/silly/don't know what I'm doing thing" at the drop of a hat. Feminists bear with me while I maintain that until we have salary parity it behooves us to use what ever tricks are at our disposal to level the playing field - consider the speeding ticket you talked yourself out of with eyelash batting as the first of many hundred dollars you are technically owed if that makes you feel better.

So, I'm checking local community colleges to see if classes are offered in this sort of thing because I figure, if I can't even scam Metro North out of $150, no one is going to invite me on that awesome diamond heist!

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