I was caught shoplifting, twice. After the first time, I ran away from home. After the second time, when I was caught on Vermont Street running away from the Ben Franklin with a Transformer under my shirt, I was locked in my room every day when I came home from school during the long, cold winter of 1987. Every book, cassette tape, or other item that could be considered entertaining was removed and placed in my parents’ closet. My mom let me out every weekday from 4:00-5:00, before Greg Proctor came home, and ask me how school was that day. It was my favorite hour of every day. She smuggled into my room the Lord of the Rings trilogy, Stephen King novels, and a series of fantasy novels involving a dwarf, a bear, and an otter. I hid them in the AC vents. Almost a decade later I stopped reading King, when he wrote The Shawshank Redemption. It was still a little too close to home.
Just added to The List and the Story: Against the Eighties