Because shredding just wont cut it anymore.

Someone stole my identity by stealing my bank card from my mailbox, and then somehow had it activated – according to another bank, there is a scam in Los Angeles where people grab your PIN number by looking at you entering it at a gas station or grocery store, then use your PIN to activate the stolen card in an ATM machine. I checked and this is in fact a means by which you can activate a card; you’re not limited to the option of calling a toll free activation line from your home phone. Anyhow, they managed to use it at gas stations and a Big 5 Sporting Goods (yes, I will be writing a letter to Big 5 about taking fake credit cards)

Frighteningly easy, it seems, so instead of shredding checks that I was going to destroy because they had my old address on them – did you know that theives have the ability to erase ink from a check you’ve written and then use that check to steal your identity – I decided to use them to light the grill for a weekend barbecue.

My client at Wells Fargo pointed out that his MBNA card allows him to set up mock credit card account numbers for making purchases online, so that even if someone steals the information from a computer file at the merchant, the number is temporary and unusable. Seems like a good idea and a service that banks should offer.

So if you think identity theft won’t happen to you, think again. So get out the lighter fluid and the Kingsford.

Hanging out a Brenda’s house with her cats.

San Francisco, in the late late summer sunshine, is one of the most pleasant cities on Earth. Brenda and I just spent a good hour or more at a tea salon. She had chai, and I had a lapsang souchong so smokey and tarry that it reminds me of North Carolina tobacco mixed with a touch of Fall burning leaves.

Heading back to the bustle of Los Angeles tonight. Metropolis, glowing.

Oh yeah. I call this one “Chick-fil-A in Hell”

Also from my phone archives. This is a few months ago when I was working on a pitch for Eddie Bauer. The nearest Eddie Bauer store to our office was at the South Bay Galleria, which happens to also house, in the food court, one of the few Chick-fil-A’s in all of Southern California.

What made this mall food court particularly hellish was: (a) I felt like a fast food consuming creep who hangs out in food courts alone at dinnertime on a Wednesday; and (b) reruns of the television hit series ‘Benson’ were playing on monitors hanging all over the place.

“We Didn’t Invent The Chicken, Just the Chicken Sandwich . . . Served in Hell.”(tm)Posted by Picasa