I received an email today from Malcolm Hardee Award designer John Ward. He said: “My friend Alan sent me this. He’s not sure if it’s fiction or fact…”
There were these four women who, although retired after long successful careers, found themselves living in less than acceptable flats and having little or no money to enjoy life with.
Then one day, after reading the daily paper, one of them suggested that they needn’t continue to live hand to mouth and why not rob a bank. Then they would get caught and spend the rest of their lives in comfort, where everything was there for them.
At first they thought it was a joke but then, after a while, they thought: Why not?
Because they all had specialist knowledge – in planning, research and stage make-up – they planned to rob a large bank in a month’s time.
The day came and they were all disguised and had managed to get some guns (not real ones) and did the deed.
However, they got away with a huge amount of money and did not get caught.
They were not sure what to do next, then decided to go for it again and robbed another bank, again collecting a huge amount of money.
The police could not find this gang who ‘dressed as and pretended to be old ladies’ (!) and put more resources into finding this ‘smart’ gang of clever thieves.
The ladies robbed one last bank and had enough to live comfortably for the rest of their lives.
They were never caught and the story only came out when the last lady alive was able to write it all down and have the book published after her death.
Presumably this story is untrue because – apart from anything else – there would have been some publicity about a non-fiction book with that story.
But there is (I think) an urge to WANT to believe it’s true.
And I am not quite sure why.
We are talking three bank robberies, presumably terrifying bank employees.
Why the need to WANT to believe it? The psychology of the reader is far more interesting than the psychology of the supposed robbers.
Or is it just me?