Take it from the person who is currently sitting in holding waiting for the police to finish their processing before I get locked up for taking $20,000 worth of cash and some random people's jewellery. Never do your robberies on a Tuesday. Before you ask me why not, let me take you through my day.
There was this bank I always had my eyes on. It was on a quiet street, with little traffic, and it’s near an area where lots of elderly stays. If there is one other thing you should know, is that old people are rich. They didn’t work for 50 years in their life to only retire for a mere few thousand, so those shrivelled grapes are always suitable targets. Rich people means a bank filled with cash. Not to mention the elderly can’t run after you or attack you, so robbing this bank felt like a given. I never planned to rob the bank today, but the street seemed to be exceptionally quiet. So, in a last-minute decision, I decided to make my move at 3pm when most of these elderly had already long disappeared back to their houses after their 11pm lunch, and some few office workers had already rushed back to work to meet some meaningless deadlines. But before I hit the bank, I had to make a stop at a hardware store nearby to pick up one thing.
A short narrow pipe.
I’m not a violent robber, so I don’t actually have a gun, and I lost my previous pipe in another robbery, so to complete my plan, I needed a pipe.
If you haven’t figured out by now, I’m not someone you’ll call a sophisticated robber. My robberies are always very simple. I take the small pipe, placed it against someone’s back, and ask them for money. Of course, I always only rob people on Mondays and Saturdays (because most people on these days are either still drunk or hungover), but the bank was empty today, so I thought why not?
I walked into the bank, and the only person there was the bank teller. Fantastic. To lure him out from behind his desk so I could put my “gun” behind his back, I went with the most foolproof plan in history.
“Oh, I think I’ve hurt my knees and ankles. Young man, could you come over and give me a hand?”
The smartly dressed fellow came towards me in no time and carefully helped me off the ground. I’m not going to lie, seeing how quick he was to offer a helping hand made me feel a little guilty about what I was going to do next, but the thought of those pretty cash made my guilt fade as quickly as this man’s feet.
“I have a gun. Now before you trigger your stupid alarm, I know you have somewhere hidden behind your desk. Bring me to wherever the money is and shove everything you can inside this bag.”
“Stay calm, sir, I will get you the cash. But first, you have to hand me your bag.”
“…The bag you want me to put the money in?”
Oh crap. I forgot to prepare a bag.
You see, what happens on my usual robbing days was that I would just take a bag from people. On Mondays, people are likelier to be hungover, so they would always have another bag prepared with clothes, just in case they threw up on their clothes. Or a paper bag, just in case they threw up. Or an empty bag because they forgot to pack due to their hangover. In those cases, I would just take whatever bag they have and use it to put the money. On Saturdays, people are likelier to be drunk because of Friday nights, and they would also always have an empty bag in hand. Either they dumped all their work out and proclaim that they’ll “quit their jobs” or they plainly forget their bags in a random bar or restaurant, in which case I get a free bag and tons of paperwork. On both days, there was always an empty bag for me to snatch. But because I went out of my comfort zone this time, I forgot that by Tuesday, people are all sober and are all very aware of their bags and if someone were to take them. Now I’m stuck in an awkward position where a guy who thinks I have a gun, is cooperating with me by giving me the money I requested to put it in a bag I forgot to steal. Great.
“A big fancy place like this, and you don’t have a bag? Please. Now move.”
We shuffled to the back where he took all the available cash the bank has and stuffed it in one of their goodie bags. Watching him place that money in the bag, I roughly estimated about $20,000. Not bad for a Tuesday and a slightly less than smooth robbery. Once the last batch of cash was in, I pushed the bank teller on the ground, told him to count to a hundred, and took off. But as you have already come to know, I didn’t get far.
As soon as I exited the bank’s safe, I came face to face with twenty-something elderly, waiting to deposit or withdraw their cash. And since the only bank teller this bank has is currently on the floor, the place is full of old and annoyed people. I was used to the bank being empty on a weekday afternoon because everyone would already be at their work, but I clearly forgot to take old people being retired into consideration.
“What took you so long? I have been waiting for ten minutes. Quickly now, I need to withdraw some money.”
In a state of panic, and in a room full of people asking me to help them do things with their bank accounts, I froze. I tried my best to work my way across to the exit by telling them I don’t work at the bank, but none of them believed me for two reasons.
One, I had just come from the back room.
Two, I was holding a bag with the bank’s logo on it.
“What do you mean you don’t work here? You’re holding onto the bank’s bag. Now help me quickly withdraw my money.”
Before I could explain to them again that I don’t work at the bank, the actual bank employee came out from the back room. We locked eyes, and at that moment, I knew deep in my heart that I was fucked.
Oh well, time to make a run for it.
Now, remember when I said that old people are easier to rob because they don’t have the strength or ability to catch you? I have been shown a new world today. That sentence may be true for one or two old people, but when you have twenty of them, they can get very rowdy.
“Stop him, he just robbed the bank!”
Those were the last few words I heard before a slipper flew across my face. Then someone hit my back. Then my nose felt warm. And all of a sudden, I was on the floor.
It was the most humiliating moment of my entire life. Never mind that this robbery already got off to a rocky start because I forgot a bag, but now I’m getting beaten up by people who lived through daily bank heists. Oh, what must they think of me? Back in their days, people probably casually robbed millions from banks and would never get caught, and now I am beneath their feet. I couldn’t let things end like this, so using my last burst of energy, I snatched away some of their necklaces and rings and made a run.
And just like the first time when I tried to run, I once again didn’t get far. Because standing in front of me, instead of twenty, unbelievably violent elderly, it was two policemen. With actual guns. Awesome.
So there you go, never, under any circumstances, rob a bank on a Tuesday.
© 2022 Alison Lian