Thursday, January 31, 2013

Judging Alex - Take Two (The Interview That Almost Came Back)

How many cops is it possible to talk to in lifetime? 

Since having my iPad taken on Sunday night in Miami, I have been through about five US states and a dozen officers, which is more than I have spoken to in over 50 years of living in the UK (that number, by the way, is three). If you add my court case against my LA landlord last year, I realise I speak to US law enforcement officers more often than I speak to members of my own family.
For the missing Blackberry, I had to go through American Airlines (no joy), Burger King and Chili’s restaurant at LAX, and half the LAPD, whose response was “Ma’am, let me tell you what we do and what we don’t do . . . “ In essence, that boiled down to: they don’t take details, they don’t take a report, they don’t give reference numbers and, as became abundantly apparent, they don’t like speaking to foreigners, even though I put on my very best British accent.
And so to the iPad loss and the Judge Alex interview stored in Voice Memos. Blimey, that was another tale altogether. Miami police don’t cover Miami. There’s Miami mainland, Miami Beach and any number of individual pebbles forces, each with its own people, and, as I not so quickly discovered, somewhere near La Goya Street up near Orlando, where my Find My iPhone told me my iPad had been located.
You can imagine my excitement. “Jaci Stephen’s iPad has been found” said the e-mail. I whooped with joy; I cried as many tears as when I lost it; my palms sweated, anticipating the joy of the black leather case back in my hands. But then . . . that was it. Nothing. I sent messages to it. I begged for its safe return. I even told them they could keep the thing – just send the Voice Memos to iTunes. I went to US White Pages and rang rather frightened strangers, demanding that they return my equipment.
But now it was located, I was back to square one. Which police force would have the unenviable task of going to go round to the address and beating up the person who has made my life a misery over the past four days? Certainly not Orlando’s “We have a lot of cases to deal with” force, and very much not LAX’s “Ma’am, let me . . . “ Yep, mate, I know. You ain’t gonna help me.
It’s certainly not like it is on the telly. There, I would meet with the lovely Olivier Benson from Law and Order Special Victims Unit (okay, that’s sexual attacks, but someone very much like her) and they would have my case sewn up, with me the victor, in about 43 minutes.
I tried Apple Support to see if they could extract the Voice Memos from the lost iPad. Well, they were about as useful as a maggot in a Granny Smith’s. 

I tried iTunes Support. Let’s just say a couple of contact lenses strapped to Katie Price’s breasts would have provided more support than the lot of them put together.

I even contacted Stephen Fry, who knows about all things Apple, and even he directed me back to iTunes or the Genius Bar. I forgive him; he has other work to do.
As the days go on, there are more bits of the interview coming back to me, although Judge Alex wants to check over what I print, as he thinks perhaps his memory might serve the piece better than mine.

Blame it on the sun. Blame it on the excitement. Blame it on the wine. 

Blame it on Apple, who hid the Voice Memo back-up I always use in my iPhone in something called Utilities. And also their ios6 system, which fails to store Voice Memos.
Blame it on the US police force. Blame it on iTunes. Blame it on thieves who go around nicking other people’s property with no thought as to how it might affect them or their livelihoods.
I know I’ll get over it; after all, nobody died, nobody got pregnant, and apparently that’s a good barometer these days (although both those things would have got me to Olivier Benson a darn sight quicker).
But it still galls me. 

Knowing that on 590 La Goy Street, Florida 32908, my iPad is sitting, lonely and depressed, in someone else’s arms. It was only an iPad 1 and I know I can buy a 2 or a 3 to replace it, but it’s those Voice Memos I’ll never get back. 

They say the apple never falls far from the tree; in this case, the Apple is an ocean away and I’m still heartbroken.
Cox’s Pippins to the bastard who has it.


  1. is useful but you should save and sync it to the cloud darhling! (sounding like Craig Revel Horwood).
    I'm in Los Angeles so sorry I can't go get it for you!

  2. Just tweeted you & Fry w/ my suggestion. Will elaborate a little here. Start FB page, web page, blog, etc w/ something good in title to request for help in locating your device (ie, Reward for Finding my iPad). Every day post a Google map (street view) with location of device. Promote heavily on social media. Try to get print media & visual media involved. Make a really big deal out of this. My point is, if you'r really pissed off (as opposed to pissed out of your gourd), yell it from the rooftops. Act like a crazy person. Get noticed.

  3. American what can we say,if it was here in Portugal and you knew where your ipad was,you can bet the police went there,held the thief and recouver your Ipad.