A crying baby is just the cover a pickpocket needs

Being a parent distracted by a distressed baby turns out to be a golden opportunity for thieves working in the area

My phone is ringing, for my wife. It’s another person calling to console her and say they’ve heard of this sort of thing happening in the area. My phone has been acting as the houseline for both of us since it happened, and if someone has to get in touch with her, they contact me, in the manner of those middle-aged couples who have joint email addresses like [email protected]

It would be easier if we had a landline, I guess. I’m fairly sure we pay for one, but I’ve never met anyone under the age of 60 who actually has a landline with a phone attached. It’s a bit like Children of Men; all the domestic landlines installed from 1980-2000 still exist, it’s just that no new ones have been added since then. So, I ring my dad’s, or my in-laws’ on a weekly basis, but seeing one in a friend’s house would be like seeing them light their lamps with whale oil. That getting one hasn’t occurred to us once in the week since my wife’s phone was stolen, probably speaks to an obsolescence that’s irreversible.

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