The Spectacular Thefts of Apollo Robbins, Pickpocket

Adam Green writing in The New Yorker:

Robbins, who is thirty-eight and lives in Las Vegas, is a peculiar variety-arts hybrid, known in the trade as a theatrical pickpocket. Among his peers, he is widely considered the best in the world at what he does, which is taking things from people’s jackets, pants, purses, wrists, fingers, and necks, then returning them in amusing and mind-boggling ways. Robbins works smoothly and invisibly, with a diffident charm that belies his talent for larceny. One senses that he would prosper on the other side of the law. “You have to ask yourself one question,” he often says as he holds up a wallet or a watch that he has just swiped. “Am I being paid enough to give it back?”

A fun and fascinating insight into the world of pick-pocketing. However it’s also notable that it attempts to have grander claims on the manipulation of a persons focus and attention.

Well worth a read.

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