Lents Neighborhood Association member and genuinely nice guy Jeffery Rose spotted something unusual at the corner market last night that sparked an All-Alert Email to the neighborhood:

"I was in the Wing-Ming on Foster for a late night purchase and I noticed sitting on the counter a box of "cream chargers" which supposedly are used for whipped cream dispensers. The box had a price of $15.99 written across it in pen. I know that they use nitrous oxide in canned whipped cream, so I assumed that's what was in the cartridges in the box. I doubt they were there for making whipped cream!"

A box of nitrous oxide capsules at the counter with a price scrawled on it? Totally made for the bored Lents teens.

I called Rose to ask about the whippit sighting and he says whippit-dealing is actually a big improvement for Lents convenience stores, which cleaned up a lot since the neighborhood association launched a campaign two years ago to get local shops to stop acting as crack and meth supply depots. "All the small neighborhood stores had one or two things, if not more," said Rose, remembering the days when razor blades and "glass tobacco pipes" were kept at the counter, "It's stuff that's obviously being marketed anymore for drug users. Stuff that you don't see hardly at all anymore."