February 4, 2013

"As the clerk started to give him cash from the cash register, the thief started to cry, explaining that he only wanted to feed his wife and family."

"After the clerk offered to give him pizza and chicken wings, the man waited for the food for about 10 minutes."
“I’d say the clerk was pretty astute,” [said Helena Police Chief Troy McGee.] “I mean, he knows how to talk to this person. Kind of commiserated with him a little. Talked to him about it and you know actually changed his mind about robbing the place. That was pretty good.”
But didn't he commit robbery by taking the pizza and chicken wings without paying? Apparently, the clerk gave him the food. This reminds me of the famous Calvin Coolidge story:
Coolidge gave him $32, calling it a loan so the intruder would not be a thief...

16 comments:

marvel said...

Jean Valjean and Monseigneur Bienvenu, part deux.

edutcher said...

The clerk was lucky, the guy was lucky.

Another day among the peons in Obamamerica.

edutcher said...

The clerk was lucky, the guy was lucky.

Another day among the peons in Obamamerica.

betamax3000 said...

I thought this was today's Gatsby sentence.

Wally Kalbacken said...

No thanks, But I'll take all of your Slim Jims, two cartons of Marlboro's and all the Wide Mouth Mickey's you got. And don't get cheap on me, son.

Inga said...

That clerk is a Mensch.

CEO-MMP said...

Keep Cool [Like] Coolidge!

Paul said...

Sad he poor man had to steal to fee his family.

But that is Hope and Change in the Obama era with Government cheese.

Give a man a free house and he'll bust out the windows
Put his family on food stamps, now he's a big spender
no food on the table and the bills ain't paid
'Cause he spent it on cigarettes and P.G.A.
They'll turn us all into beggars 'cause they're easier to please
They're feeding our people that Government Cheese

Give a man free food and he'll figure out a way
To steal more than he can eat 'cause he doesn't have to pay
Give a woman free kids and you'll find them in the dirt
Learning how to carry on the family line of work
It's the man in the White House, the man under the steeple
Passing out drugs to the American people
I don't believe in anything, nothing is free
They're feeding our people the Government Cheese

Decline and fall, fall down baby
Decline and fall, said fall way down now
Decline and fall, fall down little mama
Decline and fall, decline and fall

Give a man a free ticket on a dead end ride
And he'll climb in the back even though nobody's driving
Too ******* lazy to crawl out of the wreck
And he'll rot there while he waits for the welfare check
Going to hell in a handbag, can't you see
I ain't gonna eat no Government Cheese

http://www.lyricstime.com/rainmakers-government-cheese-lyrics.html

DADvocate said...

Ryokan, a Zen master, lived the simplest kind of life in a little hut at the foot of a mountain. One evening a thief visited the hut only to discover there was nothing in it to steal.

Ryokan returned and caught him. "You may have come a long way to visit me," he told the prowler, "and you shoud not return emptyhanded. Please take my clothes as a gift."

The thief was bewildered. He took the clothes and slunk away.

Ryokan sat naked, watching the moon. "Poor fellow, " he mused, "I wish I could give him this beautiful moon."


Coolidge must have been enlightened.

betamax3000 said...

"As the clerk started to give him cash from the cash register, the thief started to cry, explaining that he only wanted to feed his wife and family, on buffet tables, garnished with glistening hors d’Ĺ“uvre, spiced baked hams crowded against salads of harlequin designs and pastry pigs and turkeys bewitched to a dark gold."

Today is Everything is Gatsby Day.

EDH said...

He should have went to Panera Bread.

PANERA BREAD’S INTRIGUING PAY-WHAT-YOU-CAN CONCEPT

Earlier this month, Panera Bread opened its third non-profit cafe where diners pay what they can for meals. That’s right, no cash register here, just a donation box. The latest Panera Cares cafe is in Portland, Oregon; the other two are in Clayton, Missouri, and Dearborn, Michigan. The goal of the cafes, according to Panera Bread co-founder Ron Shaich, is to make a direct impact in communities by making food available to those who can’t afford it and “address real societal needs.” Shaich says his non-profit cafe is a challenge to other companies to make philanthropy a hands-on concept beyond check-writing.

How does it work? Panera staff explain the concept to customers when they arrive. At the counter, customers choose to put what they wish in the donation box. (The cafes can also accept credit cards and break bills for change.) Panera’s first two locations have learned that approximately 15 percent of patrons give more than the suggested amount, 15 percent give less, and 60 to 70 percent give the same as suggested.

Customers who cannot afford to pay, but would like to volunteer an hour of their time for food may do so. The cafes are situated so they are easily accessible via public transportation.

Panera operates 1,400 franchised and corporate-owned cafes in the US. Their pay-what-you-can cafes are run under a program called Panera Cares supported by the non-profit Panera Bread Foundation. The idea is similar to some other restaurants in the country with sliding scale menus. One of the longest running examples is the One World Everybody Eats restaurant founded in 2003 by Denise Cerreta in Salt Lake City. She said that she has found that few people try to exploit the opportunity and most are happy to contribute what they can. Cerreta advised Panera on its cafe concept and has said that Panera’s involvement may be the “tipping point” for the sliding scale concept.

A restaurant without a cash register — a novel concept for sure. Shaich has said it is his goal to have a Panera Cares cafe in every community where there is a Panera Bread location. Many museums including The Metropolitan Museum of Art and American Museum of Natural History in New York City offer suggested admission prices to improve accessibility to those not able to pay full price. Why not try the honor system concept for food? Panera is willing to be the guinea pig.

SOJO said...

Robbery implies force. This pizza part of the deal was offered while he was crying. If he also took the money, that part would still be robbery.

openidname said...

Police say would-be pizza restaurant robber invented sob story about kids:

http://helenair.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/police-say-would-be-pizza-restaurant-robber-invented-sob-story/article_eccc3992-6c98-11e2-b018-0019bb2963f4.html

Shanna said...

The clerk was smart and sweet. That doesn't change just because the man may have lied.

The Gold Digger said...

Many museums including The Metropolitan Museum of Art and American Museum of Natural History in New York City offer suggested admission prices to improve accessibility to those not able to pay full price.

The difference between offering lower prices to a museum and lower prices for food is that the marginal cost of admitting one more person to the museum is close to zero, so any cash is a contribution to overhead, whereas Panera could actually lose money by offering lower prices on food.

mikee said...

Ryokan was later questioned by the authorities, when they caught the thief wearing the clothes.

Ryokan confirmed he had given the clothes to the thief, who was released into his custody and spent the rest of his life as a servant trying to atone for his previous behavior.

Or at least, that is how I remember the story.