Wednesday, May 24, 2006

The Great Catch-a-Sniper Spell

Since the snipers are back in the news, being tried now in Montgomery County after being found guilty in Virginia, I thought I'd share a little story about how instrumental I was in their capture.

It's just hard to describe what happened to the DC area during the time the Sniper (we didn't know there were two) was at large. He hit Montgomery County in the north, as far south as Fredericksburg, and all around - we found out after the guys were caught that they'd actually cashed a check in Leesburg a few blocks from my store during that period.

You know what happens to retail when there's a sniper on the loose? It stops. There were days when the only people who came into our store were other merchants wondering if we'd seen anyone that day. And just doing chores - the sniper had shot a guy at a service station, so just gassing up your car had you looking all around for suspicious vehicles. There were rumors of a White Van so everyone was on the lookout for it - turns out there are a hell of a lot of white vans out there.

Anyway, after a couple weeks of this, Lilly and I had had enough. We were going to bring an end to this whole situation by forcing the Sniper to turn himself in. So we devised a Catch a Sniper spell.

You have to remember Lilly's a Methodist and I'm pretty agnostic. But we're certainly willing to try anything, so we went to the Reference Books and looked up all the attributes and things. I can't now recall all the ingredients of our Great Working - I know salt was involved, and tourmaline (powerful protection stone!) and as many of the protective and redemption herbs as we had in stock. And we got two candles, one white female figure and one black male figure.

At the time, everyone figured the sniper was a lone wolf and a white guy - a Tim McVeigh kind of nutcase; we just picked the figures to be the feminine and masculine principles, and also good versus evil, since the sniper was almost certainly male. So we set everything up on a map of Leesburg from the tourist bureau, heh, and lit the candles and let it go to work...

I kept going to check on the candles and it was pretty hilarious, because something about the way the figures were designed made the male figure burn down faster than the female. He's losing his HEAD while she's still barely down to her hairline, and his whole BUTT was falling off and she was barely burnt down at all... Soon she was standing in a puddle of black wax, and we figured Our Work Here was done.

Well, that night they picked up a couple guys... the wrong guys. Remember when they briefly thought they'd caught the sniper and it turned out to be some day laborers hanging around an unofficial job pickup site?

The next day, we say 'Hmm. Almost.' So we decided to do it again, once more with feeling, as it were. But we were out of white female candles, in fact out of female candles at ALL, so we decided to double up on the black male candles, being so impressed with how well that one had dissolved and figured if one could catch a couple day laborers, two would surely catch a sniper.

And that night they caught the two in a rest stop. And there were two of them. And they were both black. [insert Twilight Zone theme here]

We took a vow, then, to only use our Awesome Powers for Good, and not for Evil. But I sure wouldn't say no to a little personal gain. (Tip - don't buy a small business during a Republican administration. If you can afford it, buy an oil company or a government contractor. Otherwise, just sit it out.)


At 2:36 AM, Blogger Ralph said...

Put up a PayPal link for donations! Maybe the world will want to compensate you for casting a spell to catch the snipers.

Seriously... a Paypal link.


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