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Hill Country Living

Help: We Have A  Mysterious Theft


The annual Art Crawl, Water Valley’s biggest and most popular non-watermelon related event, was this past Saturday evening and although I barely managed to leave the 200 block of North Main, I will go ahead and declare the event a huge success. Not only was there a big crowd but the weather was beautiful. And, hey, why not…so was the crowd. There were art stops all over town and all the nosy people got to look in everyone’s homes and all the art people got to see new pieces and all the wine people got to drink free wine and all the people such as myself who are a steady combo of all three were just living large.

But I must say the most successful person of the night would have to be whoever stole two handmade and hand embroidered coasters from the front display window of my textile store. Free stuff…now that’s a good deal! Ignoring, of course, the fact that the stuff wasn’t technically free, but, hey, who’s counting? Besides me? 

In all seriousness, I really don’t have much tolerance for stealing. My home got robbed a few good and scary times while growing up and it left me a little bitter toward using the five-finger discount other than in times of real need. And I must say, if you are stealing a coaster set with a hand embroidered giraffe on it made by avant guarde fashioner designer Zoe Latta out of New York City, then you ain’t starving. You actually don’t know what you have. You just thought it was cute. And you are probably, very literally, a 5 year old child.  

But, as a true crime fan, I must say there are some elements to this crime that just don’t add up. Let’s go over the timeline of events, as from my many late night hours of watching Forensic Files, I have learned that the timeline of events is a big deal.

I left my fabric store for around 20 minutes at about 6:30. I had to go down to my other store, Yalo Studio, where I had another exhibit showing. I left the fabric store in charge of good friend Joe York of Panola Street. When I left, there were four embroidered coasters in the window. They had been there for months. They had animals on them…a zebra, a giraffe, a lion, and a mystery animal that I haven’t been able to tell what it is but it has claws and sharp teeth. The store was packed when I left but Joe is a crowd pleaser type guy and handled the store better than I would. 

When I returned to the textile store 20 minutes later, I immediately notice that two of the four coasters were gone from my window. All that was left was the lion and the mystery animal. Joe had no idea what happened and I pouted for the rest of the night, telling everyone within earshot all about my missing coasters, including newspaper editor David Howell, hoping that he would include it in the crime report. When the Crawl was over, I locked up the store lamenting the two remaining coasters in the window and had a margarita session at El Charrito which made it all better.

So, sounds like some little kid took some animals coasters, right? Or some woman who thought they were cute and they should be hers instead of mine.

But here’s the thing! The next day when I went back to my textile store to grab the leftover wine (hey, the presidential debate was coming on…I needed wine….all of America needed wine) there was only one coaster! The lion was gone! I was stunned.

How did another animal coaster go missing from my storefront window overnight?! While no one was there and the store was locked? I mean…what?!

I have a list of suspects. Considering I have a key to the store then I must be the number one suspect. But I didn’t do it so I’m crossing me off the list. My second suspect is a ghost. If it’s a ghost then I will be offering a textile store for sale shortly. But also I don’t believe in ghosts, especially ones that collect artsy animal coasters, so I’m crossing a ghost off the suspect list.  

So this leaves me with two remaining suspects. Clearly, one is Joe. He has access to a key. He probably did it. 

But I also have an alternate theory….a theoretical suspect. What if a mouse robbed me? During Art Crawl? And then again later that night?

I have never seen a mouse in my textile shop but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t some little lonely rodent who just wanted a couple animal friends his size so he scurried out real quick and grabbed them during Art Crawl, leaving behind the mystery animal because it has claws and looks like a mean weirdo bully.

So, readers, what do you think? Joe or the mouse? Unless y’all have any other theories…until then, I report. You decide.

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