Noogie's Time to Shine
ATM thief hits the road with 350 pounds of $20 bills.
Ned “Noogie” Krapczak grew up in rough circumstances in Jersey City, New Jersey. Movies were his only escape, and he dreamed of becoming a filmmaker. But by the time he hits 30, things haven’t worked out the way they were supposed to. Instead of making movies, Noogie has a job restocking ATM machines in delis and drug stores.
One day he sees a way out of it all, in the form of a slow-motion heist, siphoning $20 bills a few at a time out of the machines he is supposed to be filling. When his scheme is finally uncovered, he hits the road with his Siamese cat, Dillinger, and 350 pounds of $20 bills totaling $5 million.
In that instant, he finds himself not watching movies, but living them. He’s pulled off a great
caper and is on the lam cross-country, a life worthy of Edward G. Robinson or Steve McQueen.
Noogie works his way down the east coast on this great escape, disguising himself by using the
names of characters in some of his favorite movies.
In telling the stories of Noogie’s final days, Knipfel’s novel captures the tragic end of a broken man who, however briefly and however unseemly, managed to live the American dream—he became a movie star.
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