Archive for March, 2011

20 life lessons they don’t tell you about

By Lt. Steve Rose

If life has taught us anything, it’s taught us that life can hold a lot of unexpected surprises: some good, some not so good, and some just plain ugly. There has never been a rule book about all the things you probably need to know. Somehow, regardless of how many people have had similar experiences, there never seems to be a pass-down of even the really good things you need to know, at least in the real world.

There is no one “real world.” My real world is different than someone else’s. The real world to the upper crust may be no Starbucks within a five-mile radius while, two miles away, the real world means your meth dealer got popped by the cops and your connection just dried up. Either situation can be the universal bummer.

But I believe there are fundamentals, or absolutes, that most young people would benefit from hearing. Learning from others can be beneficial. One person may suggest: “Help those who are not as fortunate as you.” I’m good with that, …

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Off-duty: Maybe I should just forget my age

My iPod is missing.

This is the second time. No one stole it; it’s just missing.

To make it worse, it’s only the size of a stamp. I don’t even know why they bother with an earphone. I could just place it in my ear — but I’d probably forget where it was and how embarrassing would that be when you show up at the shrink’s office claiming to hear voices and he pulls your iPod out of your ear?

The last iPod I lost was found in my car by the car-wash girl. She found it two weeks after it went out of warranty. I remember having it in the car, along with the receipt, because the battery was bad. Where do these things go?

One thing I learned from other detectives back in the detective days was to eliminate the probable and start looking at the improbable, and then the nearly impossible. Well, that never works when you lose stuff. I looked all over for the first missing iPod and could have sworn I checked that car up and down.

One car wash later, that teenage girl politely placed it in …

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Off-duty: Weekends are our escape from insanity

We are a funny species. How did we get to be the supreme beings of Earth’s food chain and how long do we expect to be in first place, the way we’re acting?

Booze and drugs have accounted for most of the craziness — not to mention insanity, a noble defense for parents of teenagers — but I think we teeter closer to the edge than ever before. And we don’t need much of a push to get us over the edge.

We’re packed like sardines into these cookie-cutter communities surrounding the city, thanks to idiot politicians and deep-pocketed greedy developers who somehow convinced the aforementioned idiot politicians that building high-density residential communities, producing a few hundred thousand cars on the already taxed infrastructure, was a good idea.

The drive to Atlanta from Gainesville now takes roughly three months. Driving through Dunwoody or Sandy Springs is like driving through Marietta or Douglasville. Strip malls and subdivisions and streets filled with cars with people who …

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How you, too, can be an identity theft victim

The story begins at a sandwich shop. I go in, order a turkey on wheat, lettuce, tomato, pickle, oregano and a shot of spicy mustard. The employee — I guess the manager — is frustrated. He’s making a sandwich while talking on his Bluetooth phone, trying to get one of his employees to come in because his 11 a.m. guy didn’t.

I’m second in line behind a woman who’s facing away from me as she stands at the checkout line. The manager is running behind as a result of his noon employee being late. He’s making sandwiches and handling the cash register, too.

As we stand in line, he is ignoring the cash register, focusing instead on constructing the woman’s sandwich. She looks of normal height and weight, has long hair and wearing a sport jacket, jeans and a pair of boots. She looks maybe 30 to 40 years old from the back but I can’t see her face so I really don’t know.

(In this situation, men tend to fill in the blanks so I asked my imagination to paint a mental image of her face for …

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