Who owns this karma?

Welcome to this week’s Reno News & Review.

God help me, I’m a pirate. Not the kind with hoop earrings and an eyepatch. OK, I do have hoop earrings, and I’m seriously nearsighted, but you’ll never catch me with a bird on my shoulder. … OK, we have a bird, but it’s not a parrot, and when I tried to put it on my shoulder, it fluttered to the floor where the dog threatened to eat it. Anyway, it’s a parakeet. I don’t think any self-respecting blackbeard would have a cornflower blue parakeet.

But I’ve never set out to rip someone off and then carried out the plan. Awww, crap. I’m a bad, bad man. “But listen, your honor, I can explain.” It’s like this. I’ve downloaded the occasional free song from the Internet. It’s almost always been from an album I’ve owned before, and I’ve rarely downloaded complete collections by artists, like Queen’s entire discography or Elton John’s 40-album collection that are up for grabs on the thepiratebay.com.

So anyway, did you ever notice that if you shop at Best Buy.com and then go into the store, the prices in the store are higher? I’ve gotten to where I often shop online and click the “store pickup” option, just so I don’t have to deal with the rubber prices.

Recently, I bought a set of headphones ($25.76) and a two-gig MicroSD ($65.70) for my phone, so I could use it as an MP3 player when I’m at the gym (to play my downloaded MP3s). But the headphones sucked—earbuds wouldn’t stay in my ears.

Anyway, I returned the headphones to Best Buy, the service person said the network was down, and I could look for my refund the next day on my credit card. Well, they refunded me $10 on my $25 headphones. I sent a letter explaining what happened, and guess what? They took their $10 back.

But now, it appears from the Web site that they’ve mailed me another two-gig MicroSD. But they haven’t charged me. Hmm.

Moral: Never joke about karma. I wrote this Friday afternoon, and the dog killed the bird Friday night. Spooky.