Saturday, April 04, 2009

Raising Cane

My father always said, “Nothing much good happens after 2:00 in the morning”.

As usual, he was right.

When I last traveled to America, I became the proud owner of a brand new set of Taylor Made golf clubs and bag. I spent the night dreaming of the match I would play the following morning with my old mates. However, I left the sticks in the trunk of the rental car.

That very same car that was broken into during the night and …well, you know.

But this was America, where crime is common and expected. I, having lived in “safe” Nelson, New Zealand, had grown complacent. I forgot where I was and paid the price for not being vigilant.

Here in Nelson, we are all wrapped in Mother’s arms and no misfortune can befall us.

Guess again, Yank.

Here’s what happened.

After pooling together some savings, the wife and I decided to invest in a bit of home improvement, a new property wall to be exact. The existing picket fence just wasn’t doing the job anymore.

The builders came and brought their shovels and levels and plaster and paint. Soon we had a wall that was both sturdy and secure. This was the kind of wall that could put a smile on the face of any home.

To complete the new look, the old letterbox needed to be brought into the 21st century. It was the kind that looks like a birdhouse, but had begun to look more like the floor of a birdcage.

The hardware store has heaps of new ones, but the most flash of them all, the tall poppy, looks like a giant pillar. This letterbox is for people who receive an extraordinary amount of correspondence. Soldiers could fire weapons from behind it and not be detected. A homeless family could easily reside within for the winter and have friends over for tea.

This letterbox would be the 5th tallest edifice in Nelson.

These things sell for $500.

Somehow, it was the one we chose.

Our new addition was leveled, attached, plastered and painted. Everyone was proud.

Except on a Monday morning, whilst leaving for work, I angrily noticed the pillar was gone. Stolen. Ripped from its womb. Aborted… well, you know.

I am a pretty gentle man and rarely lose my temper. However I found myself entered in a one man swear fest, blaring out words I didn’t even know I knew. I had to go inside and wash my mouth out with soap.

A few days later, we found it tossed down a ravine near the house. It was kind of busted up but we retreived it and will reattached the thing for now and await the next attack.

Since it was already reported to insurance, we will actually get paid for a new one, so we sort of come out a little ahead in the pocketbook.

But this is the real problem:

Talking with others about these shenanigans, I am finding out that New Zealand has a pretty good reputation among civilized countries concerning crime rates. In addition, Nelson is one of the most secure places in the country. However, people also say, the problem of serious mischief is getting worse all the time.

The victims seem to be random and innocent. They are normal law abiding citizens who make the mistake of leaving their bikes in an open garage, or their lawn furniture on their lawns.

Or their $500 letterboxes near the street.

And we all know who is doing this to us. Allow me to profile the offenders:

Young males, hoons, aged 14-25, likely to be drunk, probably no strangers to the police. They are anti-social imbeciles who if they had any brains, they would rattle in their skull. All information comes to them through unintelligible text messages so they don’t even need a mailbox.

New Zealand should take some lessons from Singapore where last year, 6,404 criminals were sentenced to caning. There are over 30 offences punishable by the cane. Vandalism is among them.

Here is how it works:

A rattan cane about one metre long and one centimetre thick is soaked in water to prevent it from splitting when it comes into contact with the prisoner’s buttocks, as well as to make it more flexible. The cane is treated with antiseptic before use to prevent infections.

An inmate sentenced to caning receives no advance warning as to when he will be caned, and is notified only on the day his sentence is to be carried out. He would then receive a medical examination by the prison doctor. If the doctor gives the green light, the inmate would then proceed to receive his caning.

His wrists and ankles would be secured tightly to the frame by strong leather straps. He is then secured in a bent-over position on the frame at an angle of close to 90° at the hip with his buttocks protruding. The officer administrating the caning would then take up position beside the frame and deliver the number of strokes specified accordingly in the sentence to the inmate's bare buttocks.

As Lieutenant Colonel Bill Kilgore would say. "I love the smell of antiseptic cane in the morning."

Do I need to tell you there is not a lot of monkey business in Singapore?

It is my modest proposal that Nelson throws down the gauntlet against these drunken evil doers of the night and take up the cane. We are mad as hell, and we’re not going to take it any more!

If you agree, please mail me a letter.


At 5:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

wow, that is a very serious mailbox. do you get mail? love robin

At 7:21 AM, Blogger The Bed and Burro Inn said...

I think people that spend $500 on a mailbox should be caned. I'm still laughing that you spent that...$500..OH MY GOD!! Ho much was the wall?...A BILLION? Who is advising you on these purchases...the US Military?? HAHAHAHAH.....$500!!

At 7:34 AM, Blogger ChannelSurferDude said...

by the way...that was me...the bed and burro

At 7:31 PM, Blogger butterflies said...

Youre lucky that you didnt have the wall grafittied..

At 5:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

destroying your mailbox! cane the bastards!!!!

At 7:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

keep canning the bastards until their ass bleeds red, white and blue.

At 2:26 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do you have copy writer for so good articles? If so please give me contacts, because this really rocks! :)


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