School Employee: Arson, Vandalism

Last night, I started thinking about all the things I’ve gotten away with, counting them off on my fingers. There was that, and that, and yep, that too. The one I wanted to tell you about was something my buddy and I started doing when we were in high school, and continued to do on summer breaks in college.

The elementary school in my hometown has a tall white wall separating it from the woods beyond. We’d mix up what he called ‘napalm’ in a bucket–or whatever was on hand–and take it down to the school at night and ‘paint the wall.’

I never struck the match–I was far too scared I’d hurt myself–so my buddy did. One time we painted an evil-looking smiley face. Just bizarre, I know. And once that napalm stuff lights up, it lights forever. So there we would be, with this face or whatever burning bright into the night, confident we wouldn’t get caught: you see, the chances of a cop coming by were slim to none.

Now I work at a school. Can you imagine? I wouldn’t be allowed in the front door.

You know, I never really thought about it all. It’s just kids being kids–normal behavior. But, yeah, it was exhilarating.