Friday, September 30, 2011


When I was about 4 or 5, there was a break-in/robbery near my grandparents' house.  Since I spent a lot of time there and they had lots of fun toys for me to play with, my first worry was that what if the robber came to their house and stole all my stuff?  How to prevent this?

What if there was a way to communicate to the robber that there were certain things that were off-limits, for example, my posters on the wall, my bed, etc.  Take the fridge, take the TV, I don't care, but leave my stuff alone thank you!

I was a pretty smart kid for my age and my parents had taught me to read signs that said "Do not enter" so I wouldn't go in those places, so I knew how to spell "do not."  Luckily, my name is Robyn and although I didn't know how to spell the word "steal" I figured that a robber robs, so "rob" must mean the same as "steal" and "rob" is probably spelled like the first half of my name... "DO NOT ROB" was born.

I set to work with a black marker writing this warning on everything in my little room that I didn't want robbed.  I don't really remember what I wrote it on that day but since the slogan remained on many items for quite a few years, I recall seeing it on some posters, a bedside table, possibly a lamp, a desk, and somehow I think I got it on the bed frame too.

Eventually my parents and/or grandparents discovered what I did and I got in trouble but hey, it was worth it because my stuff never got robbed.  In fact, that house never got broken into - they probably saw the signs through the window or something and realized this was not a house to mess with.

I always knew that the above-mentioned bedside table was the one that's still in my room now but I could never find the inscription.  Today I decided to look really hard and discovered a very faint "DO NOT ROB" on the bottom shelf area.  It has either been painted over or has faded, but it's somewhat visible.  Here's a picture I took with some heavy editing to try and bring out the writing as much as possible:

DO NOT ROB:  a foolproof way to make sure robbers don't take your stuff.

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