My fourth year brought some vivid memories. I remember really liking Sesame Street, The Electric Company, and Hotel Balderdash. Saturday morning just didn't have enough cartoons and why the heck did sports have to come on afterwards. The only good part of Saturday sports was ABC's Wide World of Sports intro reel, where 'the agony of defeat' was a skier wipe-out. I preferred the scary Saturday afternoon matinees. Vincent Price and Peter Cushing. Good stuff for a growing boy.
The last lunar mission happened that year and I was excited to watch the splashdown on my families old black and white television. I was confused that nobody else thought it was a big deal. Didn't they know those guys just went to the moon?
My kid sister was born later that year too. I remember sitting in the old Logan Hospital waiting room, while Dad went up to see Mom and my new sister, Rose. A Muhammad Ali fight was on t.v. and everyone thought it would be his last. I liked repeating his saying, 'I float like a butterfly and sting like a bee. Yes, that's me, Muhammad Ali.' He lost that fight to Ken Norton, but fought eighteen more fights and won fifteen of them. He was a fighter and I liked his determination. It hurts when I see what boxing did to his health.
My First Crime
It was also around this time that I took my own foray into crime. While being babysat by my grandparents, I decided to take a walk down to the local store. I waited for grandma to go back and help grandpa get settled down for a nap, and then took off. On the way I passed the playground and thought I'd stop to play with the other kids when I went home.
I had some money and asked the store owner how much it was. He said, "One penny." Unfortunately, I discovered that everything cost more than I had. So... acting carefully, I took a toy phone down one of the isles and took it out of it's box. Another kid kept watching me, so I had to be sneaky. Then I walked out of the store with my new phone.
The kids on the playground were all gone and I wasn't sure where they went. I figured they had all gone into the school. Halfway back to grandma's house, I realized I was going to have trouble explaining my new phone, so I hid it behind my back. When I walked in, grandma was very angry.
"Where have you been?"
"I went to the store."
"What?! You can't just leave like that."
"What's behind your back."
I don't remember exactly what happened next... but I remember it wasn't a good day for me.