By Harvey Tobkes

When I was a kid, we had a neighborhood security surveillance system that beat to hell all the high tech gizmos we are deploying today.

The method we used was called furtive observation. It required, deftly lifting a slat of the Venetian blind with one finger so as to be able to see all that was going on outside in the neighborhood. Peeping Tom people were virtual surveillance cameras: detection devices ahead of their time,
concealed behind the slats of the Venetian blinds to observe (unseen) all that was going out there. Besides, it was an entertaining sport in a pre-television society.

Were those stalwarts snooping, nosey, busybodies? Noooo! They were alert watchers, and they knew every person, and every car that belonged in the neighborhood; they were sure to tattle to the police if anything looked suspicious. Of course, there was no cellphone cameras, so they remained our anonymous watch dogs and made the neighborhood a safer place.

About this entry