Greasy Thieves

An epidemic is sweeping America and no one will do anything about it: grease thieves!

"The suspect, 19, told police that he worked for a legitimate grease rendering company but had been stealing grease from businesses to make money on the side. In a separate case, two brothers were charged with misdemeanor theft after stealing grease from a Chinese restaurant in the St. Louis area. The pair also said they were from Springfield, Mo. The owners of Hong Kong Express said St. Louis police caught the two on surveillance cameras stealing grease on Nov. 2."

Yes, a disgusting, greasy bite.

Read all about it and feel your hair turn gray and oily from fear!

Not even Dirt Candy is immune. These days, restaurants either give or sell their grease to biofuel companies who come around and pick it up. I donate mine to RWA, a non-profit that converts it to biofuel. Dirt Candy produces about 15 gallons of waste grease each week, and RWA says that ours is the cleanest used grease that they get from any of their customers. Yay! Gold star for Dirt Candy!

But a lot of companies aren't RWA and they pay for old grease, and that has led to an epidemic of crime. Even the National Renderers Association is powerless in the face of this oily wave of criminality (I bet you didn't know that grease has a lobbying group). In the current election season, it's startling that no one is asking the candidates about grease thievery.

Greasecrime, that is. Which is like thoughtcrime,only doubleplus worse!

Last month, I was working in Dirt Candy when I noticed three large men entering my basement. I went downstairs and saw that they were going through all my stuff. During the day, we leave the hatch to the basement open because we can see it from inside the restaurant and it makes sense not to have to unlock it every time we go downstairs. However, this is not to be misinterpreted as an open invitation to all and sundry to go have a rummage.

"What are you guys up to?" I asked from the basement steps. My basement is tiny, and so these guys pretty much filled it. But now I had them trapped, as I was blocking the only exit. To get out, they'd have to go through me. Which may not have been a wise idea.

"We're here to pick up your oil," one of them said.

"You're not my company," I pointed out.

"Who's your company?" the leader said.

"Not you guys," I replied.

"Well, we're here to pick it up whether you like it or not," he said.

"Really?" I asked.

"We're going to take it," he said. The other two guys started shifting around menacingly.

"Can you please leave my basement," I said. This sounds more threatening than it was. The Dirt Candy basement is famous for being hot and uncomfortable, so I was really just inviting them to do something they already wanted to do.

"Fine," the guy huffed as they edged past me on the stairs. At the top he turned around. "If you ever want your oil picked up, call me."

It was like I was being asked on a grease date! And I never saw them again.

So to all of you who produce large amounts of used cooking oil on a regular basis: be alert! Grease thieves are on the prowl! And they might be coming for you!

It's not funny, Simpsons!