The small cheeky laminated sign we had posted above our restaurant urinal in the new Marina Mall branch read:
“Please stand closer. It’s shorter than you think.” And a cartoon drawing of Calvin taking a whizz.
The sign was there because for some reason, men seem to stand way clear of the urinal, assuming the floor is part of the contraption. And while we pride ourselves in keeping one of the cleanest toilets around, we DO NEED HELP from customers to do their part and not trash the place. The sign was cheeky, it was irreverent, but it was private property. And I admit it was only worth a few pesos, unlike these toilet fixtures that were stolen but worth thousands of pesos…
SO, when you intentionally take private property, conceal it and remove it from the premises, that is called THEFT. No ifs, buts or whys about it. YOU ARE A THIEF. I don’t care if it’s worth no money, 10 pesos or a thousand. It’s not yours to take, you are in no way entitled to it, and if someone did the same thing to one of your possessions, you would probably be annoyed.
Just a day after getting back to Manila from Europe, I had to fly to Cebu this so morning to do the wonderful task of giving out Christmas bonuses for 180 staff, after thanking each and every one of them for their service and efforts on behalf of Zubuchon — it’s a time of year I really enjoy, and I am often in an impenetrably good mood for this particular week. But heeding the call of nature right off the plane, I stopped off at the Marina branch and noticed that the urinal sign was missing, intentionally ripped off the wall, leaving just the adhesive on the back. It had apparently been stolen by a customer over the busy previous weekend.
Seriously?! I know, I should just laugh it off and I did. And we can certainly get another one and secure it better. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized some folks are just fools. And thieving fools at that. What possesses one to do such a thing? Is there so little respect for others property that they think this is acceptable behavior? And while it was fodder for light banter and laughter at the dinner table with some of our managers this evening, I thought I would do a post on it anyway. Here’s my light take on things…
MARKETMAN’S TOP 5 REASONS WHY SHE/HE WOULD STEAL OUR LITTLE URINAL SIGN:
1. She stole it. Because she wants to post it over her toilet at home. Because her boyfriend, partner or husband has the shortest dick on the island of Cebu.
2. He stole it. Because he is suffering from Alzheimer’s or memory loss and needs to remind himself to stand closer every time he takes a leak so he doesn’t splatter his suede shoes, staining them forever.
3. He stole it. Because slightly tipsy or high on controlled substances, he thought restaurant management was specifically referring to him, and he couldn’t accept reality.
4. They stole it. Yes, sometimes two ladies (less often two men) enter our unisex bathroom simultaneously, and giggling uncontrollably at the sight of the sign, and the spacious handicapped friendly room with lots of mirrors, which some folks have TAKEN PICTURES OF and posted on their Facebook pages, they stole it to put in their office bathroom since their co-workers all seemed to be shorter than a vienna sausage, based on the messed up floors.
5. He/She/They stole it. Because they were too lazy or too stupid to realize they could easily take a photo of the sign, just type and print one up for themselves, or buy a similar sign at a bookstore or curio shop, without having to engage in theft.
BUT EVEN BETTER, HERE’S SOMETHING MORE TO THINK ABOUT IN CASE YOU WERE THE CULPRIT OR IF YOU EVER THOUGHT OF DOING THIS:
a. Our restaurant is monitored by 4 CCTV cameras that are on 24 hours a day, and store data for several days. And while we don’t have one in the bathroom, which would be creepy, we do have one of the area and EVERY SINGLE PATRON who used the bathroom.
b. Because we try to tidy our bathroom up every hour or so, we know the approximate HOUR or even less, approximate 30 minutes when the sign went missing on that particular day.
c. If we review the tapes, there are say just 7-8 people who are now on our suspected toilet theft case. Of which x are men, and y are women.
d. Our CSI skills suggest that the sign, some 5 inches by 5 inches in acrylic, wouldn’t fit most front or back pockets of men’s pants (particularly jeans) unless they wanted to risk hurting their already diminutive member.
e. People with bags, therefor, along with folks with jackets or other things to conceal the sign move up the suspect list.
f. In other words, we may have already pinpointed the culprit. So how ridiculous is that? DUMB JUST GOT DUMBER.
IN MY FANTASY RESPONSE TO THIS ABSURD TURN OF EVENTS, I WOULD DO THIS…
1. If not for potential defamation lawsuits, I would post a “Wanted or Stolen” poster or notice, containing the faces of the three tops suspects, and say, “WANTED FOR STEALING OUR TOILET SIGN”…
2. If I could figure out where the thief lived, I would arrange to have their home broken into, and ONLY steal their toilet bowl, leaving our sign firmly stuck to their wall, and scribbled on it this note: “return our sign and we will return your toilet”.
3. Call in a few favors from friends of friends of St. Peter, to make sure that when said culprit dies and is presenting themselves at the gates of heaven, he reminds them that they will first have to spend ten years in toilet purgatory as THAT ONE TILE JUST IN FRONT of a urinal at SM that gets splattered with “short fall”.
4. I am not a lawyer, but come from a family of generations of lawyers, and I would just like to quote from here:
“The elements of the crime of theft as provided for in Article 3089 of the Revised Penal Code are as follows: (1) that there be taking of personal property; (2) that said property belongs to another; (3) that the taking be done with intent to gain; (4) that the taking be done without the consent of the owner; and (5) that the taking be accomplished without the use of violence against or intimidation of persons or force upon things.”
And in theory, from what I understand, penalties might range from public censure like say, an advertisement in the newspaper like those who admit to stealing electricity and promising to never do it again with their photo and name on the advertisement, to 1-30 days in jail. Hopefully in a jail without a proper toilet or urinal.
Oh and one more thing, if you were an ACCOMPLICE, i.e., a friend or dining partner that helped in the theft or concealed the theft from staff after knowing that your friend stole the item, YOU TOO ARE LEGALLY LIABLE.
5. If I were to be really pilyo or naughty, I would figure out a way to imbed a camera in the next urinal to be used by the thief and photograph their mini-gherkin, and POST THAT PHOTO with a caption along these lines “THIS DICK IS A THIEF”…
BUT ULTIMATELY, HERE’S THE LONG OF IT. AND I MAY DEFINITELY HAVE THE LAST LAUGH.
I HAVE YOUR PHOTO RECORDED BY OUR CCTV IN BITS AND BYTES ON OUR SERVER. WE ARE DOWNLOADING IT FOR PERMANENT STORAGE, AND ONE DAY IN THE FUTURE, YOU MAY SERIOUSLY REGRET YOUR SILLY, SEEMINGLY INNOCUOUS ACT OF THEFT. FOR YOUR SAKE, I HOPE YOU HAVE BIG BALLS.
Hahahaha. Time to go to sleep. Good night. :)