Not a lot of geniuses take up crime
By popular demand, another kid story. As I mentioned in a previous column, my brother Dan and I were incorrigible scamps. While we had our good times rafting through the swamps adjacent to the Deschutes River, we were nasty little scoundrel on other occasions.
One day, we decided to go from our rural community in Tumwater to Olympia to watch a kids’ movie. It wasn't all that far a trek… just three or four miles, and we were used to the distance.
A friend (I'll just identify him as David) went along with us. As we came in to Olympia, we happened by a funeral home. In front of that establishment was a short row of parking meters, each one covered by a black hood emblazoned in shiny silver with the word funeral in large print.
We absconded with one of the hoods – for whatever reason I don't think we ever considered. As we walked from store to store in Olympia (all thoughts of a movie out of our minds), we began to pilfer things that weren't even familiar to us, and stash them in the black funeral hood with its large silver lettering.
How in the world three guilty looking kids, walking through Olympia with a black funeral hood in hand, could possibly have gotten from one store to another while doing a fair imitation of Buster Keaton, with his furtive mock checking of the possible enemies around him, is beyond me.
After we had loaded up our black bag with all nature of things that meant nothing to us, we started our sojourn toward home. Nearing our rural neighborhood, we scampered down a logged-off bank and found a rotted-out stump in which to stash our bootie. David went to his home and we went to ours.
The next day, thinking the "heat was off," we returned to our stump and brought our ill-gotten proceeds home where we hid them behind a couple of loose wall boards in our attic room.
Alas, much to our surprise, our mother, who had been aware of our secret hiding place for years, had found our loot. She drove us to Olympia and made us go through every store we could remember and own up to our thievery.
All day long we were sure we would be sent to a reformatory. We emerged free of any charges and returned home… once again learning a valuable lesson. I never stole anything again, and I expect Dan didn't either.
I can't attest for David. I do know that after our mother had informed his mother, spoiled Dave was sent to bed without his supper. Disgusting.