The tinkling music of an approaching ice cream truck used to be a sound I adored. The kids in the neighborhood would immediately assemble into an organized ice cream SWAT team. The ones with the keenest hearing would announce the arrival and send the rest of us scurrying home for change. The fastest ones would chase the truck down since any ice cream man worth his salt didn't just pull up next to a group a kids. Whether he was bored, hated his job or just knew that the Rocket Pops would taste that much better if we had to run three blocks for them I'll never know.
But it seems to me that ice cream trucks have gotten creepier since we were all young things. Perhaps it is just the instinctual pedo-fear that makes all parent's suspect of anyone in a van-type vehicle luring their kids with sweets. Or as Twitterer AndieReid pointed out, "It's because of the child catcher cart in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang."
Or it may just be that they have indeed gotten skeevier than they were in the (ahem) late 1970s when I was a kid. This particular ice cream pedovan made it's way around our neighborhood last week. I'm not even sure it actually sold ice cream to be honest. Could be that two kids got stoned and decided it would be hilarious to put Good Humor stickers all over one of their friend's dad's van. And in that case - high fives all around.
But that tinny carnival music that comes from the ice cream trucks nowadays no longer makes me reach for my change, it makes me reach for my taser & whistle.