“The ramblings and grumblings of author Ad Hudler”

One more Strange (but true?) Florida crime ...
Thursday, November 27, 2008

This one sent to me by a reader in Boise, who saw her share of odd crimes as a northern California resident for nearly half a century. I quote her directly:

"BURGLARY IN FLORIDA (You just can't make this stuff up!!)

When southern Florida resident Nathan Radlich's house was burglarized
recently, thieves ignored his wide screen plasma TV, his VCR, and even left
his Rolex watch. What they did take, however, was a generic white cardboard
box filled with a grayish-white powder. (That's the way the police report
described it.)

A spokesman for the Fort Lauderdale police said that it looked similar to
high grade cocaine and they'd probably thought they'd hit the big time.
Later, Nathan stood in front of numerous TV cameras and pleaded with the
burglars: 'Please return the cremated remains of my sister, Gertrude. She
died three years ago.'

The next morning, the bullet-riddled corpse of a local drug dealer known as
Hoochie Pevens was found on Nathan's doorstep. The cardboard box was there
too; about half of Gertrude's ashes remained.

Scotch taped to the box was this note which said: Hoochie sold us the bogus
blow, so we wasted Hoochie. Sorry we snorted your sister. No hard feelings.
Have a nice day.

And you thought California was the land of fruits and nuts!"

Ad Again: Sorry, but you CAN make this stuff up, and this is certainly made up ... one of those urban myths broadcast on the WWW. My former-journalist-and-now-fiction-writer mind detects some things that are just too untrue: The names, for one: Gertrude is the quintessential old-lady name ... TOO PERFECT to be true. Same with Hoochie ... although Pevens is very believable because it's unusual.

When choosing names for characters I follow some rules so that the names are believable. Here's one: Names that put us to sleep or make our fiction flat: Kathy Johnson. Brian Jones. Stephanie Smith. Mark Taylor. As a general rule, if your character has an unusual first name, then it's okay to give him a boring last name, and vice-versa. Examples: Sully Johnson, Chalmers Smith. And: Mike Fromong, Mary Hartupee.


Blogger geeky Heather said...

Kathy Johnson does not write flat fiction, anyway. =)

December 3, 2008 at 3:00 PM  

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