How to stop a thief? (And my 100th post, Yippee)

Dear Capt.,

Hi, I’m posting this on behalf of a person who bugged me to friend. This friend works in a government department as a public slave servant. They like a cup of coffee now and then as their work is SO BORING and the coffee helps them stay alert. So they usually take in a litre carton of milk now and then. They clearly label it as theirs. The problem, it seems, is people steal it.

At first it was small amounts, not worth worrying about. Now it seems wholesale. I’m convinced that someone on the floor is bathing in his milk like Cleopatra, because it disappears just like that.

My friend had taken to marking the level of milk with a texta. People got around this by either:

  • Rubbing out the mark badly and drawing a new one in.
  • Adding new marks.
  • Worst of all, putting in a bit of water to the milk, I suppose to replace the milk they nicked.

In the last case my friend has twice seen the same co-worker remove a cup full of milk which that person hides away, then add a cup full of water to the milk.

Lately, someone has simply taken to stealing the whole litre of milk. They work in a large open plan office of about 100 people. They are not sure who has been doing it. They would like to find out. As the office is in a secure area, use of cameras isn’t allowed, mainly because what we do is so BORING.

My suggestion was that my friend just lock their milk in their desk and be damned if it is warm. Or just live with the occasional theft.

But I am sure many of you have far more devious, humorous, downright evil creative ways of catching a milk thief. Please remember though that any method should not incapacitate a person or affect their permanent ability to work, because that might get my friend in hot water.

Concerned Co-worker

Dear Concerned Co-worker

I’ve had to deal with this same issue at my workplace, luckily we are allowed to carry weapons, so the perps don’t often go back for a second slurp of milk if we catch them at it.

But after some thought, here are my top ten suggestions, gained from an extensive survey of the office where I happen to work … And they are in no particular order…

1. Label the milk as Breast Milk, that’ll stop most people, apart from the non-weaned variety of thief


2. Just occasionally drink straight from the container in front of people. Write on it “My herpes is in remission, Help yourself”

3. For something more boring, pouring it into a different bottle would probably work. Something unappealing like butter milk or low-fat soy or even as goats milk.

4. Send out a memo asking why people stole your horse semen… Whoever vomits is the thief.

5. Put some drops of red food colouring, it will not change the flavour and it will look very unappealing.

6. Buy a bottle of milk and leave it in the sun for a day or so, then place it in the fridge for the thieves to make themselves very sick on!

7. Write on the bottle (I have spat in this, use if needed). Just be aware that some clown is likely to amend it with “That’s OK, so did I” what do you do then???

8. Get passive aggressive and put a note on the bottle or even email the whole organisation stating said bottle is yours and taking it is theft.

9. Laxatives? …. too far?

10. Final suggestion, learn to drink black coffee!!!

Capt. Savage

(Against all forms of milk theft, especially when it’s his own)


Can’t leave anything anywhere these days!!!

You can’t trust anyone these days!!!

Everyone where I live tries to look after themselves, to make sure they are safe, and they expect that safety and security especially in their own homes. But don’t go expecting that where I live it seems. If it isn’t nailed down, bolted and screwed and glued, someone somehow is going to steal it. So far that has included clothes of the clothes line, and several pushbikes, chairs and tables, and even an outdoor BBQ on a balcony. Nothing is seems is too hard to steal.

My stolen Avanti bike

I personally have suffered from the of curse of my units. I had just purchased a lovely new pushbike and I proudly rode around for a week showing off to work mates and friends etc. I also managed to fall of several times, because I bought the bike and assumed I’d still be able to ride after not riding since I was at school, but that’s another story.

Now I thought I’d protected it by purchasing one of those really heavy-duty bike locks and a chain, you know the ones with an industrial strength looking combination lock and heavy-duty looking wire encased in plastic. I thought it would be safe even from a nuclear Armageddon, but shock horror, within a week of storing the bike overnight down in the security garage it was gone. Someone just walked into the garage, probably one of my fellow residents, cut the wire lock off and walked off with it. The picture above is of my of my former pride and joy (my bike, sob, makes me sad to this day)… I was mostly upset because I hadn’t even got it onto my insurance policy yet ($1,000 odd dollars down the drain).

So I wasn’t surprised when recently I got home to find a pathetic little note in my letterbox from someone else who’d suffered a similar fate to me, except in his case it was his car.

Now normally when a persons car is stolen the thieves then either takes it somewhere else and sell it, or they take it somewhere to strip it for parts, and then trash the car. But these weren’t your usual car villains, no they were a little bit cheekier than usual.

A typical burnt out Subaru wreck

This is the normal treatment of a stolen Subaru WRX, at least from my experience.  But in this case they didn’t even bother to take it out of the car out of the garage. They actually stripped in where is sat, parked in the car park. Now this is a security underground car park, with remote-controlled doors, security codes, iron grates, the works, and the car is in a spot just across from my car spot.

These cheeky thieves stole the usual things, which included the car stereo and the lovely expensive alloy wheels. You see this wasn’t your usual WRX, it was a fully kitted out hoon mobile. The kind of noisy monster that has an exhaust pipe that you could fit the average head inside.

Now once the thieves got started they were having such a good time that they just got a little bit carried away. Because not only did they nick the stereo and stuff, but they also stole the all the seats, the front headlights, and the dashboard as well for good measure. The best part about this was that after doing all of this work, they carefully put the cover back over the car so that it looked almost like nothing had happened.

What amazed me is how the hell did they get all that stuff out without anyone noticing? We aren’t just talking a little bit of stuff, they would have needed a van or something and there must have been more than one of them. The police were amazed and couldn’t believe nobody noticed anything.

The worst part for this fellow has that he had lost his licence anyway (for being a hoon), so the car

Here is an impounded Hoon WRX (same as the victims)

had been sitting in the garage for months. But this guy was a caring hoon and lovingly looked after his car, making sure that it was started regularly, a very caring car hoon indeed (well at least as far as his car went).Up until just a month ago the shell of the car was still sitting on bricks in his car space (poor fellow).

So you may be wondering where do I store my pushbikes now? Considering my unit complex appears to be infested with thieves. Both of them live in my unit with me, cared for like they are part of my family (which they are). And my car, well luckily it’s so boring that no self-respecting thief would be seen near it.

My favourite part of this tale is the way the thieves ever so carefully put the car cover back, and that they managed to do all of that work without a single person including me even hearing or seeing a thing.

Has anyone else had something stolen from their place or in unusual circumstances?