The Original Cat Burglars Unveiled

Tucked in between “news articles” about alien abductions and man-eating butterflies on the World News Daily Report, I found this gem hidden away.   Long story short, it claims that an elderly lady trained her cats to steal jewelry from her neighbors; the epitome of “cat burglars.”

click photo for story

I admit, there is a part of me that wishes this was a true story.  I could absolutely get on board with training my cats to do cool things other than bringing me dead bugs. Let’s face it, though; cats only do what they want to do, and it always involves a smug, self-serving attitude and a “what’s in it for me” end goal.

I can see me, 20 years from now, in full Crazy Cat Lady mode.  I’d train my cats to do things like weed my garden, mow my lawn, put away the dishes, and fold the laundry.  In my fantasy, I am the ruler of the roost, the commander of the cats, the kitty whisperer.  The truth is, I live to serve my cats.  They have me so well trained that I respond to the smallest puking noises they make, even from a dead sleep.  I have given all of my furniture to them to use as thrones, perches, or beds.  I believe all of the cat food commercials I see, and my cats eat better than I do.  I clean litter boxes religiously and keep lint rollers to clean off the clothing that my cats allow me to wear when they aren’t using it as a bed.

On that note, the article makes me laugh when it references that these cats were voluntarily malnourished; apparently, according to the report, they deliberately made themselves seem skinny and underfed so that people would take them in to their homes to feed them.  After the neighbors opened their hearts and homes to the skeletal felines, the cats would abscond with anything of value.  Only then would the elderly cat-keeper reward them with food.

Really?  If I tried to train my cats this way, they would laugh at me.  “What’s in it for me? Better make it worth my while. And don’t even think about not feeding us, we know where the treats are. More important, we know where you sleep.”

Now I have no doubt that a cat COULD think of this clever scheme.  The only thing that keeps cats from taking over the world is the lack of opposable thumbs.  But would they really want to?  And perhaps therein lies the real reason cats don’t rule world…they simply can’t be bothered.

Let’s review the cons against this whole organized feline crime spree:

  • The scheme cuts into the most important time of the day: Nap time.  That rare 20 out of 24 hours they spend napping would suffer if they were involved in such a time-consuming racket.
  • Ignoring humans: The burglary idea would definitely require freely interacting with humans for something other than dinner, and seriously, what cat wants that?
  • Movement: To fully realize the potential of this scheme, cats would have to move.  More than from one end of the bed to the other.  This is an instant disqualifier.
  • Potentially uncovering plans to rule the world: Cats cannot have their plot revealed.  While it is no secret that cats plan to take over the world, the exact plans cannot be revealed until the perfect time.
  • A drop in Facebook and You Tube ratings: The cat community doesn’t like to talk about it, but it thrives on internet ratings.  If cats are implicated in robberies, it’s very possible that cute kitten video viewings will drop to dangerously low levels, resulting in a complete breakdown of the internet as we know it today.

Now, let’s review the reasons cats would voluntarily choose to do something, heck anything, at all:

None

Lastly, let’s consider the odds of a cat being trained by a human to do something that he does not already want to do:

 None

As much as I wish this story could be true, I think this will forever be relegated to the land of satire.

And that’s probably a good thing.

Under Lock and Key

I just learned there is an app called KeyMe that can make copies of keys using a photograph. The blogger who wrote this article took a photograph of his neighbor’s key in their apartment complex stairwell, had a copy made via the handy dandy KeyMe app, and then later broke into said neighbor’s apartment in a “hey, let’s prove how easy this is” maneuver with the self-made key. Luckily the neighbor was a friend or at least must be, given the blogger wasn’t arrested or shot. And I’m assuming they still are friends after this little exercise in security…or lack thereof.

I must give my heartfelt thanks to Andy Greenberg for bringing this out in the open. I only wish this issue was getting more notice than it is. Although maybe it’s just me. Maybe I’m the one who has had blinders on. I won’t go into all the details of what the hell would possess a company to create an app like this…Mr. Greenberg does that quite well in his own writing.

What I will bring up, because it’s not mentioned anywhere in the article, is the very important fact that not only is this scary to everyone with regards to being robbed, but for women, it’s frightening on a whole other level in that we now have to worry about keeping our keys under lock and key so as to prevent some creeper who may be suffering a hurt ego, after having his advances rejected, from coming back to our house at a later date and exacting his revenge.

Although credit cards, names, and the like are clearly exchanged in order to get the key made, as mentioned in the article, who would even begin to think that an app like this even exists to KNOW to check with them to find out if that’s how the perpetrator gained access??  I mean, really!? Were any of you aware of such a horribly thought out app?  Or was I the only one in the dark here?

We’re Here to Help

So my mother keeps getting calls from Windows.  Now I’m pretty computer savvy and can help her troubleshoot most problems over the phone, but how an “operating system” has her phone number, even I can’t figure out. But somehow, it does, and representatives from said operating system keep calling her. Oh, I know what you’re thinking…but they’re not from Microsoft mind you – they’ll correct you on that – they’re from WINDOWS.  That’s one pretty jazzed up operating system, let me tell you.

Anyway.

A serious revelation came upon the wave of these almost daily calls from Windows, one that I have yet to wrap my head around and which will likely divide the family once word gets out. My mother is apparently breaking the law on a regular basis. My straight as an arrow, staunch supporter of “following the rules,” never tells a lie mother. I always knew she was hiding something. I’m ashamed to admit this to you but I feel that it’s necessary to out my mother for the hardened, albeit secretive, criminal she is (it’s my civic duty after all). Regardless of the shame this will surely bring down on generations to come in the family, I feel it’s important the truth be known.

My mother…my 71-year-old mother…has been sending out illegal signals from her computer!  I know, I know, right!?  It’s awful! And don’t let her innocent face or sweet (*cough cough*) demeanor fool you either. I never have trusted her and I’m not buying into her alibi either. Oh sure your computer’s been off…oh of course a computer can’t send out illegal signals…oh what the hell even are illegal signals and what idiot would believe that…yeah, right! WINDOWS wouldn’t lie!

So. Yeah. There you have it. People with strange accents keep calling my mother claiming to be from Windows and accusing her of sending out illegal signals. Of course they’re happy to fix that problem right up for her so long as she gives them remote access to her computer. Seriously, are people silly enough to fall for this? I mean, I guess they are or these so-called Windows reps wouldn’t keep doing it. I imagine if they failed to get a response from people in general, the scam would lose its appeal and these low-class grifters would move on to something from Column B on their menu of illicit activities.

Now my mother may not be Bill Gates where computers are concerned, but she’s not stupid…far from it. And no matter her experience with computers, she’s wise to the ways of the world. She’s not exactly the type of person to fall for such heavy-handed tactics. Actually, you’d have to be pretty damn smooth to get something past her, which come to think of it, I can’t recall ever happening. It’s sad to think there are people who fall victim to such crimes and lose a great deal when they do.

Depending on her mood when they call, she’ll hang up or tell them off. Of course trying to get to the root of the organization by asking rational questions gets her nowhere as they adamantly insist they are from Windows and provide no other clues – their backstory is pretty uncreative if you ask me.

Personally, I think my mother should just have fun with it – because time is money to these lame-ass crooks on the other end of the phone. They can’t afford to waste time on a fruitless call but then again, they don’t want to let one get away that might possibly be “hooked.” So I say play it coy enough that they believe you, but come up with some outlandish questions and comments so that you might enjoy the exchange at their expense.

For instance, tell them it’s not your computer and you know nothing about computers, but you’d be happy to help them out…you certainly don’t want any illegal signals coming out of your computer box.  Can you just see their eyes lighting up from way over here!?  They’ll probably figure they’ve hit the jackpot.  Ask the guy (or gal) “where’s the on button?”  Which of course should be followed up with: “Well, the screen’s still blank,” when they ask you to move forward to the next step.  Then after he goes thru all of the troubleshooting to get the thing turned on (and it’s not working)…ask him if you should plug it in.  While sitting in the comfort of your living room watching t.v. and drinking a glass of wine (far away from your computer), you could pretend to go through a whole series of missteps that would drive the person nuts. And waste their valuable time.

Or you could always take a completely different tack – tell the scammer you’re just not sure how the illegal signals are getting out of the house given all the foil you have on the windows and around the doors – it certainly put a stop to the aliens’ chatter.

 

Im-Here-To-Help

 usually leads to —

scam-ahead-sign-368px