The Methadone Phone
Have I mentioned that this year hasn’t been off to a great start? Well it hasn’t. I am trying really hard not to dwell on it and instead find humor. After all, anyone who knows me knows that I can make myself laugh just about more than anyone else can. So let me tell you the story about the Methadone Phone.
It started with a big night in the middle of a very big week. It was our Sales & Services Kickoff last week and last Thursday was the final celebration. Everyone went big. But before I could raise a glass with my team, I had the #Social46 gathering. From there, I hightailed it to Sensu for dinner with my team. Then over to Kilroys for drinks with what seemed like all of ExactTarget. Then back to Sensu for dancing. And lastly, Ike & Joneseys for a traditional farewell to the evening involving well drinks, awesome music and all of us dropping it like it was hot. Things I carried with me during all of this? My coat. My brand new Super Bowl Scarf. My purse. And of course, my phone. For those that know me, you rarely see me without it. I don’t sleep without it. I can barely stand being in the shower without it. How. On earth. Could I have lost it?
Well, I blame the Saki Bomb + Tequila Shot + 97 Red Bull & Vodkas, the amazing dance moves this body was shaking out on the floor and the dress I was wearing which though quite cute, did not come with pockets. As we all piled our belongings on a few booths at Ikes, I am sure I kept my phone on my person. But then I am sure I probably set it down on a bar so that I could have my hands free for whatever dancing I was surely doing. And then I am sure that it was snagged. Now, I didn’t realize it was gone until the moment I got back to the hotel and couldn’t find it anywhere. Luckily, I was with some very chivalrous guys who searched high and low, back to bars, cabs, etc looking for my phone with me. Nothing.
The next morning I went down the list and called every bar/restaurant at which we played. I called every cab company. And then, I got on my iPad and downloaded the “Find My iPhone” app. Thank gosh for the iCloud because since my phone had it enabled, the app went straight on my phone and boom….there was this beacon of light, pulsing on my iPad screen. My phone was at a Subsidized Housing Unit downtown.
Now my phone is always passcode protected as required by my company so the person holding my phone really had no play here. But with the app, I was able to send a message that popped on the screen for them to read. I wrote “Thank you for finding my phone! I have GPS tracked it’s location and will be there this morning.” The complex has 40 units and I was well prepared to go knocking on every door. Yes, I called the police and they so helpfully suggested I turn it into insurance and get a new one. And yes, I contacted the complex and they were extremely helpful and would do all they could short of breaking into homes for me to search. It was going to be a laborious process, but I was ready.
And then? I watched as the location changed. It’s on the move! It was time to act. Time to get my phone. Against many warnings from concerned friends, I really wasn’t frightened about confronting the person who held my phone. It was mine. And I already felt dead inside without it… like I had lost an organ. And if I earned a little street cred in the process, all the better. I brought my “muscle” with me and we took off. We landed at 9th and Meridian and canvassed the area. We talked to all the local businesses and peeked into every parked car. From what I learned, the app is accurate up to 12 feet so the phone was either in A) the Methadone Clinic or B) the Geo Tracker parked in front of my car. After entering the clinic, it was hard not to notice the bullet-proof glass and the police person sitting next to the receptionist. The waiting room was full as I announced my situation and told whoever would listen that I was willing to reward anyone with my phone. The people working at the clinic were less than helpful but a few of the people in the waiting room asked me some questions and seemed intrigued. One girl, however, never made eye contact. Instead, with her pant leg rolled up to her knee, she was picking at a nasty gash on her leg, causing it to bleed. I stared her down a bit before walking out the room. I turned to Adam and said “Homeslice with the scab picking? Yeah. That’s our perp.”
But she left the clinic soon after and the GPS location stayed strong. So we went back to the Geo Tracker. It had to be in there. We sat in the car, watching as people came and went. This stakeout was pretty awesome. I felt like McNulty watching Stringer Bell and really felt like quite the badass. Maybe it was my love for The Wire that caused me to feel invincible, but I was ready to do whatever it took to get my phone back. Adam noticed the doors on the Geo Tracker were unlocked so I resolved myself to breaking and entering. As I waited until the coast was clear, I approached the car. Adam was to call my phone the minute I opened the door so that I could hear it vibrate, grab it and hop in the get-away-car never to be seen in that area again. But as I reached towards the door handle, a man appeared. Yep. The man who owned the car. I pounced on him (not physically of course, but with my sharp words). I explained how it appeared my phone was in his car based on a GPS tracking device. He claimed it couldn’t be. So I asked him if he was out last night (Ike and Jonesys by chance?). Where he lived (was it the same complex where I first tracked my phone?) Adam was dialing as we stood there, hoping we’d hear the vibration. But it become glaringly obvious that he didn’t have my phone. As we got back into my car, Adam said “Well, we just avoided grand larceny.”
Disheartened, we left. And the phone apparently stayed. In fact, up until the battery died, the phone’s location never budged. As I spoke with some colleagues about my situation, they came up with what very well could be the scenario: the thief saw my message about me tracking it to their home, took it with them to their Methadone appointment and then dumped it. Getting rid of evidence given that they couldn’t get into it anyway. With this new idea in mind, I went back there on Friday afternoon, only to find that the clinic closed at 1pm. It appeared they had Saturday hours so the minute the clinic supposedly opened on Saturday, I called. But instead I was directed to an addict helpline (shockingly, they didn’t care too much about my phone situation). So I drove down to the clinic and once again, the doors were locked. I walked around the alleys. I looked in drainage vents. Nothing.
Now the phone is dead and so no longer tracks. But with one last attempt, I went back to the clinic today. Maybe, just maybe, their trash hadn’t been emptied and I could go dumpster diving there. This time, the woman behind the bulletproof glass was very nice. She explained that everything is emptied daily, and that she would let me know if it was turned in. My phone is a goner. And it’s final resting place? A methadone clinic.
**Do you require a stakeout? Contact me. I’m picking it up as a side business because clearly, it’s a natural talent.