24 January 2009


“Thieves respect property.
They merely wish the property to become their property
that they may more perfectly respect it.”

- G. K. Chesterton, English-born Gabonese Critic, Essayist, Novelist, and Poet (1874-1936)


I went outside Saturday morning, got in my truck, started it up and got quite a surprise. My normally smooth-running pickup now sounded like a motorcycle in need of a tune-up.

I sat there for a minute pondering. I used to have an old Chevy Blazer (1972) that I had bought used. The guy that had it before me had installed glasspacks on the exhaust system - giving it more power, but also making it noisy as hell - and this is what my pickup now reminded me of.

I turned off the engine, got out, and looked under the truck. To my amazement, my exhaust system was in two distinct pieces, with a large gap missing in the middle. I was baffled. I didn't remember running over anything or striking anything. Looking closer, the pipes had a very clean edge to them. Even more confusing.

I went inside and called around to a couple repair shops, explained my situation, and was told that my catalytic converter had been STOLEN!

Yep, last night someone had crawled under my truck, SAWED OFF THE CONVERTER, and absconded with it. I guess it takes these dicks about two minutes with a Sawzall.

I had never heard of this, but apparently it is an epidemic growing across the country -
skyrocketing, some are saying. Sometimes the thieves unbolt it, and sometimes they saw it right off. I have now learned that there is platinum inside the converter, which is an expensive metal and greatly valued by thieves meaning to sell it for scrap to dealers willing to turn a blind eye to pesky legal concerns. From what I've read, this is so prevalent now that it's happening in broad daylight in shopping mall parking lots. Bastards!

It's going to run me around $400 to have it replaced, and I'll try to find out if there is anyway to secure it to prevent this from happening again.


UPDATE: I found out that there is a device called a "Cat Clamp" that you can have attached to the catalytic converter that is supposed to deter theft. Looks like it just makes it more difficult so the thieves won't bother, and will try an easier car or truck. But the damn thing costs almost $300, and that's without install...

(grumble, grumble...)

UPDATE 2: Took the truck down to Midas, and they replaced the converter and part of my tailpipe which was rotted off, all for $470. As I was paying, the joker at Midas told me that the new one was good for 5 years or 50,000 miles - and then looked up at me and said with a smile, "That is, unless it gets stolen again..." Funny guy. But they were great, and were able to get me in and fix the truck in one afternoon - on a weekend. I'll be using them again, but hopefully not for the same service.  :-(

KJT - Seattle (2009)


redwithenvy said...

i'm so sorry! it was a regular occurrence outside of our office at work.

karma is a bitch, and they will get what's coming sooner or later. hang in there, my friend!

KJT said...

Thanks S.

Yeah, Karma... hope that gets them. I've also got a compound bow and hunting arrows - maybe I'll sit upstairs in the window a few nights this next week... See if they come back.

The Bandit said...

Dude, that totally blows:( Maybe karma was trying to tell you to get a new truck before the baby comes:)

cae said...


I hope they do come back, though.

I hope they come back and you really are sitting there with your arrows.

mighty jo said...

that sucks. ive had things stolen or vandalized before & it feels so personal (to me at least)...im always thinking, "why?? what'd i ever do to you??"

BF kemyooter said...

Did you use the Midas on Rainier? If you did, and you go back, make sure you say 'Hey' to Frank for me. That guy rocks!