I’ll stop talking about the break-in soon, honest.

§ August 10th, 2007 § Filed under Uncategorized Comments Off on I’ll stop talking about the break-in soon, honest.

Some bad news regarding the theft at our store. Since the glass case containing our EC Comics collection had been disturbed, I made some time on Thursday to pull all the books out and perform an inventory. At first glance, the books in the case simply looked like they’d been pushed around a bit, but after checking our notes, it appears that six issues of Weird Science are missing. It seems the thief (or thieves) just reached in and grabbed a pile at random. We did find a Weird Science on the floor beneath the case Wednesday morning, so it was probably knocked out in the crook’s rush to grab the books out of the case.

I’ve been trying to piece together what exactly happened that morning, and so far it’s something like this:

1. Perp drops in through ceiling, sets off motion detector alarm.

2. Perp rushes to the first class counter, grabs Witchblade, Spawn, some other recent books.

3. Perp rushes to one end of the second, much larger, glass counter. Reaches in and grabs a few variant cover comics from that end.

4. Perp then goes to other end of counter, reaches in and grabs a pile of ECs at random, dropping one Weird Science on the floor, as well as one of the Witchblades.

5. Charges into the backroom, apparently tripping or kicking the bottom-most new comics shelf closest to the backroom entrance, breaking it.

6. Tries to head to the back door, takes path by office, kicking over a box and some books in the process.

7. That path is blocked at the end by a number of boxes currently in the process of being rearranged (a nigh-endless process, as anyone who’s survived a trip to our backroom can verify), so the perp doubles back and takes the next aisle over to the back exit.

8. There are three doors in the general area of the exit. He tries the bathroom door (no go), the closet door (Fibber McGee, look out!), before finally finding the actual exit and getting out, setting off the back door’s alarm signal.

Elapsed time: about a minute.

I’m using the singular term of “perp” because one, I’m pretty sure it was just one guy (it seems like the same guy was poking around in both cases, and nothing else in the store appeared to be ransacked), and two, it makes me feel like Judge Dredd. “DON’T MOVE, CREEP!”

So while I’m still somewhat bemused by the amount of effort this criminal put into breaking into our store, and his focus on a bunch of Image books that peaked in popularity a decade ago, the EC thing is quite irritating. Especially since it was obviously an afterthought…”I got the rare and valuable Spawn books…hmm, maybe I’ll grab a pile of these old books, too, just in case.” GAH. I’m almost insulted by the poor taste of our thief.

Seriously, though, we were lucky. Things could have been much worse. A lot more stuff could have been stolen, a lot more could have been broken. I just have to look at it that way, even though my semi-amusement at what was stolen has been muted by the loss of actual hard-to-find valuable material. On the plus side, those Weird Science books will stick out a lot more than a bunch of common recent comics, so I made yet another round of calls to notify nearby stores about them.

But losing those Weird Sciences bummed me out for most of Thursday. Even playing this LARD album at the end of the work day didn’t break me out of my funk. Even actual funk couldn’t break me out of my funk:

Well, okay, I lied…that helped a little.

Customer: “So, did you guys make the paper with the robbery?”

Me: “Yeah, we got in there…on the radio, too.”

Customer: “Hey, free advertising! So long as they spell your name right….”

Me: “Um, well, about that….”

We had a few people ask us “Hey, what’s with the ‘Seth’s Comic Corner’ thing?” so I’ve had to explain a few times that the two store names got conflated, somehow. So much for the free advertising silver lining…but I did see a few new faces, so maybe just the knowledge that there was a comic shop in Ventura, regardless of its name, caused folks to seek us out.

Hey, let me have my improbable dreams. But really, after nearly 30 years of business, I’m half-surprised that there are still people around here who haven’t heard of us.

Not robbery related: a brief conversation between Employees Jeff and Aaron outside the shop, related to me by Jeff…they’re talking about a friend of theirs, who’s about their age (mid-20s):

Jeff: “…And he met and married this woman, with two kids, and she’s 39!”

Aaron: “Wow! 39? That’s even older than Mike!”

Ah, yes, that’s very amusing. I’m sure Aaron will enjoy telling that story at wherever his new job will be.

Pal JP has been posting some great goofy Batman images lately…the most recent post has a couple “adult” LP covers (NSFW – naked butt alert!) with Batman images that will haunt your dreams, and another recent post has an eyesight-damaging off-register Japanese Batman. God bless pal JP and his unerring sense for wonderful Batcrap.

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