This is a story that I previously only told to Sunshine. Yet in an effort to clear my conscience, I’m opening up a deep, dark secret to all of you.
Okay…here it goes…
The year was 1991. I had just finished an abysmal first year at the University of New Brunswick (i.e. I was kicked out for bad grades) and had returned home with my tail tucked between my legs. I was working at my dad’s pizza restaurant as a waiter, scraping by to get whatever tips I could get to add to my minimum wage. I had just moved out and into an apartment of my own and was hard-up for funds.
Not that I’m making any excuses…just setting the stage.
So on a uneventful Saturday afternoon in September, I was moping around the local mall when I noticed that the record & tape store was having a cassette sale (I know…I’m REALLY showing my age here). As I walked up to the store, I saw that they had a couple of tables out in the hallway of the mall…a “discount bin”, if you will.
I decided to look through and see what they had to offer. One particular cassette caught my eye because…well…because it was by a band I wouldn’t normally buy a cassette of: the New Kids On The Block.
On this particular day, I saw No More Games/The Remix Album sitting in the discount bin for under $10. Now I was never a huge fan of NKOTB, but I thought that maybe this particular cassette would feature some “cool” remixes that I could actually enjoy. Specifically, I saw that there was a remix for Call It What You Want that I thought would be pretty sweet (turns out, it wasn’t as good as the original).
But wait…was I actually going to pay MONEY for this cassette?? OMFG, no. I couldn’t DARE show up at the cash register in a small town at aged 19 with a NKOTB cassette, even if it WAS on sale. I’m a dude, after all…and dudes just don’t buy that type of cassette.
So I looked around…saw that nobody was paying any attention to me…and I slipped the cassette in my pocket.
Embarrassed…scared…excited at my master criminal mind…I quickly (but nonchalantly made my way out of the mall and straight to my car. Because the discount bin was in the mall hallway, there were no sensors going off to alert the authorities of my dastardly deed. I had gotten away with the most incredible crime of the century!!
All for this…
Yes, kids…that is the actual cassette that I stole from a mall store over twenty years ago. I recently found it when my dad had a “clearing out the basement” garage sale. Somebody ended up spending $5 on an entire box full of cassettes, of which this particular gem was one. The “PIZZAH” inscribed on the middle of the cover is the nickname I used to have “back in the day” because I worked at my dad’s pizza restaurant. It was eventually shortened to what my friends still call me back in my home town, ZAH…but that’s another story for another day.
So here we are…after years and years of guilt…where I have decided to come forward and admit to my crime. I am only hopeful that the statute of limitations has expired on this particular incident as jail time for this would be REALLY difficult to explain to “Hoss the Angry Cellmate” as he tells me of his bad murder rap.