Bob Arno

Spilled secrets

Spilled secrets

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I guess I spoke too soon and too much about our documentary project. I held back information, but not enough. Our producer has asked…

Raising antennas

Raising antennas

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Coming down. Feels strange trying to write ordinary blog stuff after all the excitement covered in my previous 22 posts. As Bob and I…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—21

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—21

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Denouement. None of us wanted to leave the park. After the demos, the dinner, and the as-yet-untold experience on the buses, after the conversation,…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—20

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—20

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Bob gets cold feet. Overnight, reality began to percolate and bubble over the exhilaration of yesterday’s thieves’ challenge. By morning it was clear to…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—19

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—19

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Dinner with thieves, again. But wait— there’s more! The day isn’t done. And though we want nothing more than to sit and process our…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—18

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—18

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Dinner with thieves, continued. Carafes of white wine land on the table. I join Andy and Lou and have beer. Among much laughter, the…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—17

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—17

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Dinner with thieves. It’s 3:00. The film crew’s still perfecting camera angles, lighting, and table arrangements. I’ve taken my seat as requested, so cameras…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—16

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—16

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Anticipation. Frank has RSVPed by email, with enthusiasm. But what about the others? Will they come to our dinner? I wonder about the restaurant…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—15

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—15

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Thieves find us, more. It was a big day for us, and for the whole documentary team. The lowlifers stealing Bob’s wallet, finding Marc…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—14

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—14

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Thieves find us, continued. We’re not looking for pickpockets; just busy filming pickup shots on the bus for the documentary, when known thieves Marc…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—13

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—13

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Thieves find us. “Police, police! She took my wallet!” That’s Bob screaming at ear-splitting volume. Not his usual reaction to pickpocketing! Usually, he turns…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—11

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—11

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On making a documentary. As I said, you’d think a documentary is just a camera following the action—but the action must be lit and…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—10

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—10

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Day Two, Meeting with Thieves. It rained. We stood waiting in the drizzle in a park behind some kiddie carnival rides, pretty certain they…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—9

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—9

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Thiefhunting, Day One, still more. This is an old-fashioned town, lightly touched by the 21st century. Vendors ply the streets like the horse-and-buggy days…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—8

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—8

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Thiefhunting, Day One, more. We’ve been standing in the tiny coffee bar more than an hour, speaking loudly. Eventually, the owner throws us out….

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—7

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—7

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Thiefhunting, Day One, continued. Bob and I were on a high, having found a talented pickpocket team on the first bus ride of our…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—6

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—6

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Thiefhunting, Day One, continued. As we synchronize our thiefhunting plans with the film crew, I’m newly appreciative of Michele, our London-based sound recordist, who…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—5

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—5

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Thiefhunting, Day One. Fully half the day is spent rigging hidden cameras. I’m wearing a button camera attached to an awful button-down shirt that…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—4

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—4

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Six of us—locked into a small, sweltering room. We’d done interviews in the convent refectory all day, first Bob, then I. Some of the…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—3

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves—3

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“They’ve bugged our room,” I postulated to Bob in the taxi from the airport. “I bet they hid video cameras inside.” That aspect of…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves-2

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves-2

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“Are you wearing a bra?” That was one of the first sentences directed to me upon landing. We did not collect our luggage because…

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves

Bob Arno and Bambi in a den of thieves

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Time to make an announcement. Our long-dreamed of, long-worked for project has become reality. Bob and I are making a documentary about pickpockets. The…

Pickpocket justice

Pickpocket justice

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RAILWAY RAJ With a firm grip on the patient’s big toe, the hospital orderly entered the police inspector’s office. He carried the full weight…

Pickpocket heaven at Oktoberfest

Pickpocket heaven at Oktoberfest

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Psychology is an integral part of a good cannon’s skill-set. He must be able to read the mark. More than one good pickpocket has…

munich octoberfest pickpockets

Oktoberfest: Breasts, big beers, and Bavarian barf

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Called in to pickpocket goodies from the massive Munich Oktoberfest crowd, Bob and I, just back from Japan to do a show for Monsanto…

Bob Arno on competitive intelligence

Bob Arno on competitive intelligence

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I (@bobarno) recently wrote about my reluctance to use Twitter and the pros and cons of sharing information with everyone who might be a…

On Twittering or not

On Twittering or not

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I love to look at Bambi’s Twitter communication. Short snappy funny bitchy snarky bright messages 140 characters long. I envy her exchanges. I wish…

Hiring a professional thief

Hiring a professional thief

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Great feature article on Bob Arno in the March/April 2009 issue of American Entertainment Magazine. Full of quotes, reads like advertising copy. Terrible website,…