The NYPD and the MTA constantly remind New Yorkers to stay alert when wandering around in a daze wearing headphones listening to music on their iPhones and other devices. But it's hard to hear such warnings when when you're kicking a wicked air drum solo to Rush's "Tom Sawyer" cranking full blast on your iPod. Even more seductive are the lush orchestral indie rock stylings of Andrew Bird, as one area fan learned after getting relieved of his iPhone Tuesday morning.
The NYPD says a 22-year-old man was riding the 1 train downtown at 3:30 a.m. listening to music on his iPhone when he fell asleep around 116th Street. He then awoke at West 66th Street to discover that his device was missing. A police source tells City Room he was beguiled by the dulcet sounds of Andrew Bird's "The Naming of Things." Honestly, the kid's just lucky he wasn't listening to Bird's even more transporting ballad "Lull"—he probably would have woken up with all this clothes gone too.
The victim went to the 6th Precinct station house in the West Village, where he reported the iPhone stolen at 5:30 a.m. According to the NYPD, officers used the Find My iPhone app and found a signal coming from the phone at East 107 Street and Madison Avenue. The iPhone registration had been changed to the name of Joseph Outley, whose name and photo came up in a search of criminal records.
The victim and three officers then went to the vicinity of 107 Street and Madison Avenue andfound Outley sleeping in the third floor hallway of a six story building. It's unclear which Andrew Bird track lulled the alleged perp to dreamland—maybe Bird's devastating Hurricane Katrina-inspired track "Hole in the Ocean Floor," off his phenomenal new album Break It Yourself? Outley was arrested and charged with trespass, criminal possession of stolen property and grand larceny. Bird, meanwhile, will be playing two nights at the Beacon Theater on May 4th and 5th. Bring your Snuggie!
[This post made possibly by our unadulterated love for Andrew Bird.]