Here Is the Mixtape I Made For the Guys Who Keep Breaking Into My Car

Categories: Mixtape

By: Shea Serrano

Three, maybe four times in the last month, my car has been broken into. I suppose at least a portion of that is my fault, both macro and micro.

Macro: I mean, if I'd have maybe paid more attention in school, I'd probably make more money than I do today, which means I wouldn't have to live across the street from a seedy storage facility and a couple hundred feet away from an apartment complex that -- even money -- is right this very second playing host to at least two gangland style executions.

Micro: Despite the fact that I live in a row of townhomes that features a gate at the entrance and the exit (murders can't climb gates, I guess), I never park inside. I only park in the street. I don't know why I do this, I just do it. What's more, I NEVER lock my doors. What's more what's more, I occasionally leave my windows down. Now, initially, I simply didn't do those things because I didn't feel it was necessary. While I love Love LOVE my car dearly, it is not one that most people covet. It is a 20-year-old Jeep Cherokee. The tread on the tires is gone and the power locks only work if they're feeling especially charitable and the only reason that air does not rush inside the car while I drive is because I stuffed the gap between the door and body's frame with weather stripping. But still, despite its shortcomings, the burglars hunted it.

The first time it happened, it was because I'd unintentionally left the windows down overnight. The burglars (I assume it's a twosome because twice the driver's side door and passenger's side door have been left open, and that doesn't really seem like something that one person would do; it'd be like breaking a window to enter a house, then breaking a separate window to get out) got in, rummaged through the glove box and center console, found nothing, then scadoodled. They didn't bother to try and remove the radio (it's the stock cassette player) and they didn't bust out any windows or anything (they are a higher class of criminal). Two weeks later, it happened again in nearly the exact same order.

After that, things got weird. I'd been parking my car out there for about nine months before this all started happening, and I'd never locked the doors or really worried about anything. The burglars had no doubt noticed (they probably discussed that very thing at their burglar meeting, which burglars definitely have because, I mean, it's in every goddamn movie). It felt like if I decided to start locking it, they'd get mad and tear shit up just to do so. So I left it. And those motherfuckers got me two more times over three more weeks.

I guess I could've just moved it out of the street -- that would definitely have been the most sensible thing to do. But the first thing I thought about when I considered that option was that part in The Last Castle where Robert Redford, playing an ultrarespectable military inmate, responds to threat of removal to a separate facility by James Gandolfini, the unscrupulous prison warden and Redford's antagonist, with something like, "Well, you COULD do that, but you don't want to win like that, do you?" So then this:
That's a mixtape I made for the burglars. On it are eleven songs, all specifically chosen to relay specific messages for them. I included a CD version as well (because maybe they don't have a tape player -- I don't know), and a handwritten note. The note reads as follows:

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