When we think of policing, we don’t always think about psychology. One is academic; the other, relentlessly real-world. But many police departments, including San Francisco’s, assign patrols based on a psychological theory: The Broken Windows Theory.
One day, when Melissa was thirteen, she and her friend Liz bought some geodes. They didn’t want to wait to get home to crack them open, so they decided to throw them against the wall of an apartment building. Liz’s aim went wild on one of the geodes, and it went through a window. Melissa would have probably forgotten about the incident, had it not been for one inexplicable thing: the window didn’t get fixed. Ever. So in 2011, 22 years after the incident, Melissa went to go find the person who left the window broken for so long. She brought along a tape recorder.
The music you’re hearing is by the Bay Area blues band, Delta Wires. Their name refers to the fact that the music was born in the Mississippi Delta, but modern instrumentation has added electrical wires to change it.
You can hear the Delta Wires this Friday at The Saloon in San Francisco, starting about 9:30pm.