Deep Thoughts With Wee Willy Willikins
Matty B has decided gifts suck, so he’s started giving out “gift certificates.” Not from a store, though. From him. It’s not a bad idea. In fact, I’d even use this idea and I’ve seen it suggested before as a “voucher system.” You know, mother’s day rolls around and you spent your last few bucks on that keen new dress (video game for all you girls) you really wanted and you can’t afford to buy her anything, so you chop up some construction paper and give her vouchers for things like “clean the living room,” “no complaining about object of hate of your choice for one day,” or “cook dinner, as long as there’s no eggplant or asparagus involved.” Of course, foot massages, back rubs, and laundry are also options, but I don’t feel comfortable doing any of that for my mom.
Anyway, Matt gave his sister a voucher for the DVD of her choice and she chose U2’s concert DVD from Boston. Matt, being the good Irish-Catholic Jew that he is figured that he could use a Borders gift card he was given to take care of most of the price, so one day, we set out for Borders. Zak, Matt and I walk in and start looking.
One of my favorite TV shows of recent time is a show called Firefly, created by Joss Wheaton (the mind behind Buffy the Vampire Slayer), which aired on Fox briefly a year or so ago. While browsing through the DVDs, Matt finds the newly released Firefly complete series DVD and passes it to me. I was in luck! It had been marked down from $49.95 to $44.95, which placed it only $45 out of my price range. Well, I flipped around in my mind whether I’d waste my money on it and eventually decided it was worth the cost.
I changed my mind later. While flipping the box, I noticed that there was magnetic thing on the outside, so I carefully peeled it off.
“Hey Zak, check this out.”
“The mag strip was on the outside. I can probably just walk out of the store with this and no one would be the wiser. But I’m not like that. I’ve never shoplifted before. I’ve got too much moral fiber for that.”
“Yeah, I know.”
Well, we finally found the music DVD section, which wasn’t anywhere near the actual DVD section. After several minutes of looking, Matt couldn’t find the DVD he wanted.
Now I consider myself a good guy. I don’t normally steal (except from corporations, and even than I don’t normally steal), or lie (I try never to lie unless it’s part of my gullibility professorship), or any of that junk. In fact, I think I’m more moral than most people. Then again, most people probably think they’re more moral than most people. After many minutes of consideration, I decided the risk was worth it and I’d slip the DVD set into my hoodie and try and walk out with it.
Well, we’re all done, so we start to head towards the door. I was leading the way, Matt and Zak behind me, both oblivious to my heinous plot, and a couple trekking out behind them. As I stepped through the anti-theft towers, the alarm shot out. I was the only one walking through at the time. I slowed a few steps waiting for someone to call out “Sir, stop,” but no voice from behind the counter rang out. Instead, it was Zak.
“Benny, are you stealing merchandise again?” His admonishing tone both disbelieving and playful. I stopped, twisted slightly, my heart beating fast, and glanced at Zak, rolling my eyes.
“Well,” I started, taking a deep breath, “I was trying to.” There was a silence, the couple behind our little group bemused and unsure of the truth. “Shall we keep walking?”
“Um… yeah… sure.” The clerks went back to clerking and the couple started nervously walking. I turned and walked quickly but calmly towards the escalator lest a security guard try and cut me off. Within moment, Matt and Zak had caught up with me.
“Did you really take something?” Matt asked.
“Well I didn’t expect you to take it right after you told me you were too good to do that.”
“I can never take the moral high ground again.”
Needless to say, Matt and Zak felt left out, so Matt flipped off some dude in the parking garage and Zak spit on a car in order to cure their criminal inferiority complex, but I will never shoplift again… unless it’s really expensive… no, not even then… well maybe if it’s a corporation (level 3 on the Ramsey scale)… naw, not worth it… well maybe if I’m poor. Lesson: Quit rationalizing you prick!