Monday, October 02, 2006

T&A Goes Sherlock

So, as you know, Mr. T&A and I got burgled the other week. While my initial thankfulness for my good fortune at having lost only stuff fairly quickly gave way to a low-level murderous rage at somebody for taking my stuff, I had ranked the possibility of the burglars getting caught up there with the chance that Suri Cruise would grow up to be well-adjusted.

Thus, at first I at first didn't notice the strange goings-on with my Netflix account. First, September 25, Netflix sent me an email saying I had returned a personal DVD. Huh, I vaguely thought, I wonder what that was? Then about a week later I noticed that we had 4 Netflixes, when we only pay for 3.

It wasn't until I got back the supposed personal DVD that I began to recognize the Netflix oddities as Possible Clues. It was a white DVD with "Debbie's Bridal Pics" written on it in purple marker, containing, what do you know, Debbie's bridal pictures.* It was not mine.

Now, I am getting married soon,** and I have spent my fair number of months being obsessed with wedding-related message boards. Thus, I know from hilariously freaky wedding pictures, and I can say with authority that Debbie's rank up there. The engagement shots in particular are exemplars of the genre: all 2 dozen of them show Mr. Debbie leaning sulkily against a weathered wall or other rugged object while while Debbie sort of humps his left leg, sticking out her left butt cheek for inspection, splaying her left hand avec ring on his chest, and turning her head around to growl at the camera in profile. We also got through most of the semi-pornographic "getting ready" shots of Debbie in her skivvies before we started to feel slightly dirty and switched to VH1.

Then, a few days later, I updated my Netflix cue and noticed that Netflix thought I had returned Gilmore Girls, Season 2, Disc 4, on September 25. In fact, this DVD was stolen in the burglary (along with the DVD player containing it), and while we had gotten a replacement copy from Netflix, we had not yet returned it.

Finally the elements started to come together. Someone returned our stolen DVD and Debbie's Bridal pics right at the same time! But, dear readers, this is where I get confused. Presumably it was the burglars, because how else would they get our Gilmore Girls? But why would they steal one of our return sleeves or envelopes? (I don't remember if any were missing.) Why would they bother to return the DVDs? Why did they return Debbie's wedding pics? Did Debbie and Mr. Debbie also get burlged, or (as I prefer to think) are Debbie and Mr. Debbie the burglars?

We ran these theories by the police, but they did not seem particularly enticed. If any of you crime-cracking people (or Netflix experts) have any ideas, please let me know!

*Yeah, I looked at a total stranger's wedding pictures that I got by accident, and now I'm making fun of them on the internet. You wanna take it outside?

**I have not mentioned the whole getting-married thing before partly in order to preserve my thin veneer of fake anonymity, and partly because I didn't want to seem like a lame-o who can't shut up about my wedding. However, now it seems relevant, plus there is really very little else going on in my brain right now. I am spending considerable time thinking about things like, "Which is a better organizing principle for seating charts, balance of talkativeness or similarity of interests?"


Andrea said...

Netflix is offering $1 million to ANYONE who can figure out a better recommendation system than the one they currently have in place. This suggests two things:
1. The burglars are going to win $1 million for figuring out that you would LURV The Debbies' wedding DVD.
2. Netflix has cash to toss at mysterious problems, so you should see what they'll cough up for this one.

Anonymous said...

post the pictures! also, do you know debbie's or mr. debbie's last name? is it in one of the pic file names? is there a picture of a program from the service, something like that? people are very easy to find.

Andrea said...

(Imagine me banging fists, holding fork and knife, on table) PICTURES! PICTURES! PICTURES!

Minsane said...

I'm waiting for Foleygate (aka Cocktober Surprise) commentary.

Anonymous said...

You should call the news editor at your local, uh, paper (maybe not WaPo, but something well-read and more tabloidy). Tell them your story and get them to publish the photos.

New York papers like the News and the Post do this all the time -- it helps catch local criminals (chances are, you're not the perp's only victim), it's good for the paper to be involved with the community, and it's a cool story to boot.

Remember when all those women started snapping cam-photos of flashers and other subway pervs in New York? Papers started to publish the pics and they caught the bad guys pretty quickly.

Anyway, I'm sure the news desk at a Washington paper would be interested. Plus you could catch the person. Police don't care all that much, but if you get the media involved, you'll have more power.