Santayana And I Hate You

« July 2007 »

Memo to Sydney, Australia: YOU ARE DUMB.

I wasn't intending to pick on the Commonwealth this week. It's just working out that way. And some people in the western part of Sydney, Australia, obviously have not been reading this website. And got fucked as a result. This is an important lesson.

Why, back in 2004, I helpfully pointed out that when a crazy person is about to climb into an armored vehicle and wreck a bunch of your shit, there are usually a few clear warning signs that you can spot. The people of Granby, Colorado learned that the hard way. And the people of Sydney, having failed to take the opportunity to, through me, learn this the easy way, also learned this the hard way.

Let's turn this into a game. I'll post a paragraph from a news story about a dude in Sydney, Australia, who took an armored personnel carrier and knocked over a bunch of mobile phone towers over the weekend. You see if you can spot the warning signs the people surrounding John Robert "James Garner Stand-In" Patterson managed to miss. Ready? Here we go.

"The armoured personnel carrier was from A-One Lift Truck Services in Minchinbury, where it was popular with students hiring it for school formals."

Did you spot it? I bet you did. Yes, if you live in a place where students going to dances like to rent armored personnel carriers, the odds of an armored personnel carrier wrecking your town goes up ASTRONOMICALLY. Consider moving.

"Greg Morris, owner of the hire company, said he hired Patterson for a six-month contract to help restore the armoured personnel carrier, which dates back to 1967. Mr. Morris said: 'We worked on this together and he loved the work he was doing. I remember once when we took it out, someone touched it and he lost his temper with them. That's how much pride he took in his work.'"

OK, the sign of mental instability in the employee is subtle, I'll admit. Still, the part where someone completely fucking lost it when a passerby understandably reached out and touched HIS BELOVED TANK may provide some important clues that Mr. Patterson, while a diligent restorer of sixties military hardware, may not be playing with a full cortex.

"Mr Morris said he believed Mr Patterson worked on tanks in the army. Neighbours said he was also a former technician for Telecom (now Telstra), who received a compensation payout about 15 years ago after a head injury."

OK, a bit of this is 20/20 hindsight, since the cell phone towers he knocked down were all owned by Telstra. Still. Ex-military, head injury, grudge against former employer. Connect the dots, people, before someone drives an APC through one of them.

The rest of you now have no excuse. No excuse at all. We now have two clear examples for you to learn from. Quiet guys with grudges working long hours on any kind of armored vehicle, be it a bulldozer in Colorado or a prom wagon in Sydney, will eventually climb in the cockpit of that armored vehicle and knock some shit over. I shouldn't even need to explain this to you. And I certainly shouldn't have had to point this out TWICE.

The number of armored vehicle rampages in the past three years is now rapidly approaching the number of Al Qaeda attacks on Western countries. And unlike Islamic terrorism, here's something even the average person on the street is well-qualified to spot and report. CRAZY GUY WITH GRUDGES WORKING ON TANK-LIKE VEHICLE. So why not leave the Muslims at the airport alone and start concentrating on the slow-moving piles of armor, OK?