Friday, November 17, 2006


One Christmas time, (got your popcorn?) a box of Poptarts disappeared from our kitchen pantry. My mom brought all 6 kids of us into the kitchen, lined us up against the counter, and asked "Who stole the Poptarts?" Nobody answered. We all looked at each other, but nobody copped to taking them. Because I was a known, frequent thief of pickles out of the pantry, suspicion fell upon me. Mom, in her frustration over not getting a confession, felt safe in assuming me guilty of this newest pilfering. "Terry, because you won't admit your crime, your dad and I are forced to not give you any gifts for Christmas." Boo hoooooooooooo I couldn't believe it! I really didn't steal the Poptarts, and I was being wrongly accused!! I was devastated. I think Mom had figured this was the ultimate way to wrangle a confession from me... but since I didn't do it, I couldn't confess! She truly regretted her decree, when she saw that the confession wasn't forthcoming. But, she knew that she couldn't withdraw her words or she would lose her own credibility. So, lo and behold, I received not a single gift from my parents that Christmas under the tree. I did however, receive some gifts from Santa, whose handwriting on the tag bore a suspicious resemblance to my mother's...

Years passed. We never had heard who actually had stolen those horrid Poptarts. Poptarts have become a legendarily sore subject with me. Then, sometime this past year, I was joking around with my brother. The dreaded subject came up. He, rather shame-facedly admitted, that it was HE who had taken that box of Poptarts. I hardly knew what to say, and still don't. Ah, the things we do in childhood which come back to haunt us when we are FIFTY! Who'd a thunk it?

31 comments:

Anonymous said...

Very interesting story Terry. Much food for thought. Hmmm, who would of thought a box of poptarts could work their way between parent and child. Were they made of gold or perhaps had the winning ticket to the chocolate factory? I would like to meet these poptarts, not every day you meet ones that important.

Anonymous said...

as a first grader,the neighbor girl and i were walking home from school,when we noticed a freezer in a garage.these freezers were all the rage in 1961, being mass marketed to helots,arriving completely stocked with dead cow dead pig-but best of all Frozen orange juice concentrate,in a can.my bud in crime and i five fingered(stole) a couple of cans and proceed to her house.as we prepare to open the cans and spoon out the frozen delight,we were BUSTED,by her mother,who then called my mother,then both mothers wanted answers.WE told the true about the garage and all---However the mothers Refused to believe that we would enter private property and steal--thinking instead that we must have stole these items from the supermarket,we were brought to the store and had to "return" our ill gotten goods and apologize to the store manager--never-the-less,to this day ihave never stole anything from a garage again--Sweet to share old childhood memories,gives me a laugh---peace and love always gb

javajazz said...

aha! the infamous poptart story,
also known as
Parents Trying To Gain Control
Of Their Kids....!
sounds like the strongest impression
it left you with was a kind of haunting
empty feeling of not getting Christmas
presents from your folks,
another parental lesson shot to hell
all in the name of
"we'd better not back down or
we'll lose our credibility..."
thank goodness i'm such
a perfect parent...!
(my daughter hasnt been home or
spoken to me in a week...)
man, i bet your brother felt awful!
poor kid.
and you, wrongfully accused...sheesh.
there should be a law barring
all things christmas-related
from any and all
childhood punishments....
we used to get some
pretty interesting punishments
ourselves when my sisters and
i were kids....
punishment is stupid and demeaning.
it serves no real purpose
other than to humiliate and
a pathetic attempt
to gain control.
(can you tell i have feelings
about this subject?)

Miz BoheMia said...

Oh how I hear ya! As a child I had a very intense and deep connection with animals, preferring them to people... we had two birds, that to make a long story short, got out of their cage because someone opened the door for them. I was accused of the crime and much yelling and insulting and the like happened (I was raised in an abusive household you see) and no one believed me when I protested and declared my innocence and yes, goodness knows how many years later, when an adult, my brother confessed to the crime... only to me though and still not to our mother...

Oh wel...

Miz BoheMia said...

PS- I was so happy to hear that at least you got your gifts via Santa! Still... too brutal!

Lindsey said...

I would have killed him!!!!

Jeanne said...

Shit. I want to send you a Christmas present.

jillie said...

OMG..that is too funny Terry! Well, I hope your brother appologized. With the six kids, I have this image of the Brady Bunch kids standing in line with Mike and Carol Brady handing out the lecture and the punishment...lol!

Have a great wknd ;o)

Autumn Storm said...

"Bother!!"
So funny how we remember these things so well, have similar memories of being wrongly accused of something that my brothers did. I can't believe it took yours this long to confess! Thank goodness for Santa, there to save your Christmas day.

javajazz said...

ya, they probably felt pretty bad
about it, afterall!
three cheers for "Santa!"

Outdoorsy Girl said...

Awww. That was such a sad Christmas story! I think that I'd have to beat the brother for this. How did he handle the guilt for this many years?? LOL.

javajazz said...

theres always Karma....

Tom & Icy said...

Give him a box of Pop Tarts for Christmas this year.

javajazz said...

oh now i feel bad for him!
(sniff)
for pete's sake,
he was probably all of
8 years old...!
i wouldnt have fessed up either!
poor guy probably felt all trapped...
(boo hooooooo!!)

Gareth said...

I loved eating pop tarts when I was in The States, especially the blueberry and cherry ones. Sometimes I had them for breakfast if I was in a hurry. Don't hate me lol.
Isn't Santa a really nice guy. He never lets you down. Just remember to unblock the chimney before Christmas or disastrous consequences can happen!!

Sherri said...

Oh, you poor thing! And, all of that over blueberry poptarts too! Blueberry being the worst kind....

Tai said...

LOL! Well...at least you know now, that's gotta count for something, right?

Keshi said...

o brother! :)

Keshi.

Oliviah said...

Reminds me of two childhood stories, one a bit funny, the other...not so funny. I'll tell the not-so-funny one first. There were three of us sisters & my oldest sister "could do no wrong" & my baby sister was "the baby", therefore--could do no wrong. I generally spent my days walking on eggshells trying to not get accused of doing one of those "wrongs" that my two sisters were always "not" doing. So one day, one of them did some "wrong" and my mother decided she had had enough! So she decided the way to elicit a confession out of one of us (me) would be to confine us to sit on the floor in the bathroom until one of us confessed, plus, the threat that we ALL would "get it" when my father came home if no one confessed. So somebody was going to confess. I don't know which of my sisters had done the wrong this time but they stubbornly held out, as they were wont to do, refusing to admit their crime knowing that eventually I would say I had done it just to keep us ALL from getting a whipping from my father when he got home. I finally just said I had done it, to keep everyone else from getting a whipping. But I hadn't done it. That tore me up, they were willing to let me get a whipping to protect their butts and no one ever came clean on that one, not even after all these years. I am not sure how I would feel if one of them had enough of a concience to tell me that they had done it.

Okay, that story is over. Now the funny one. My sister had a lot of chocolate girlscout cookies to deliver and boxes kept coming up missing. My mother was livid & certain that me or my other sister were stealing them & eating them. She ranted & raved over it but we just were as mystified as she was. Then later in the week she was cleaning out the dogs bed. Under the covers was buried chewed up boxes of girlscout cookies and my mother actually had to admit she was wrong in blaming us. But the funny thing was the look on the DOGS face when she got caught! She had "I'M-CAUGHT!!" and GUILT written all over her face! LOL!

Her whole demenor was so pathetic it was utterly theatrical and we all wound up laughing so hard that we collapsed on the floor, the couch, whatever we were nearest.

And off & on the rest of the evening, a random giggling could be heard on some side of the house or another when one of us remembered "The Girl Scout Cookie Bandit!!!"

And I am glad to say that the guilty pup did not get a whipping over her thievery! :)

Mile Stones said...

Sometimes it's good to come to a good text-post late, so that you get to read the feedback as well and see the ball that was set rolling. What lamentable scene it depicts, that you should really have taken straight down the road to Hollywood & sold & got rich as a child-supa-scriptwriter!
And were you scarred for life by this injustice Terry, in fact, all of you? Definitely the empty Poptarts box (nice product placement, BTW!) for your Bro this Chrissy! Me, no such stories. I was born saintly & beatified just before the age of 2. LoL! As if!

Anonymous said...

hope the mocha hit the right spot ;) gb

tsduff said...

Trée - There are no poptarts worth meeting, believe you me. I can't stand them. No gold wrapper ;-)

Annon - I loved hearing that story. Just goes to show that mother's really DON'T always know what the truth is, even though they desperately want to! :-)

Lisa - My Mother felt awful after that fiasco - and it did provide much legendary story telling for years after. But having my Brother confess was the ultimate letdown. I suspected him for all these years, but now that I actually know who stole the poptarts, some of the fun went out of it.

MizB: It seems that everybody has a story or two to tell about being miss-accused. Amazing how oft it happens. But what are brothers for anyways but to get sisters in trouble? HA HA

I did get stuff from Santa - but it was a sad Christmas nontheless.

Lindsey - I couldn't: he was/is bigger than me!

tsduff said...

Jeanne - awe - thanks Hon :-)I appreciate the thought :-D

Jillie - what a funny concept. Never thought of my parents like the Bradys... yuck! But we did get the lecture and punishment... ha ha thank goodness it didn't happen like that very often. And over Poptarts, for crying out loud!

Autumn, I think my brother was terribly remorseful - but too scared to confess. And the longer he waited, the worse and more impossible it got! That is why I didn't give him a bad time when he finally did confess. I think he suffered too.

Lisa - Santa is a good guy. Really!

Julie - it is amazing how much we can smother a wrong... the dread of coming clean and facing the music must have churned and squirmed away inside him all these years. He only told me on a whim - because it just "popped" out... oh, bad pun...

Lisa - he was about 12!!!!! That is old enough to know better! Don't feel sorry for him - he is a big boy. And if he suffered then... it was not as much as I did... LOL

Gareth - if I had a chimney, I would check it twice... don't want any Santa mishaps :-) But since I don't, he'll have to navigate on his own by the normal means... (down the stairs from the bedroom :-D)

tsduff said...

Tom and Icy - I think I will! I absolutely LOVE that idea :-) Do they still make blueberry? Ah, justice.

Sherri - I used to like blueberry - actually still do. Just not inside a poptart. :-)

Tai - well, perhaps. Like I said, for some reason it was a letdown to finally really know the answer. Anticlimactic.

Ha ha Keshi - oh brother is right. Oh BROTHER~! What is a girl to do with one.

tsduff said...

Oliviah - thanks for sharing those stories about childhood mishaps... I can laugh along with you about the doggie under the bed. Ha ha ha! I remember finding a giant pile of cat food cans, pilfered from the trash in the kitchen way up under the bed in my little sister's room. It was quite a cache of them. I had 4 younger sisters (have since lost one) and 1 older bother - oops, I mean Brother :-) He grew up to be a pretty nice guy. I always got in trouble for stuff my little sisters did, but I was not an angel myself :-D Thanks your stories Oliviah. Hope you are having a decent, if not great Monday.

jillie said...

You can have the chicken joke ;o)

It's all yours Terry...LOL

Kyahgirl said...

awww, poor Terry!!

brothers are evil!

cat said...

This brought back some ugly memories growing up.

I agree. Punishing children serves no purpose. It only teaches us not to trust our parents to protect us.

I'm glad "Santa" brought something for you.

tsduff said...

Thanks Jillie - I love it! COOL!

Laura - Brothers? What's not to love? HA HA HA

Cat - sorry to hear about your memories. Hopefully you have some kinder ones to supercede them now. I know my parents made mistakes in the raising of us kids, but they meant well. I have made mistakes in raising my own 3 kids, but I truly hope I didn't cause them any memories that are too painful to think of now.

Santa rules :-D

Doug said...

Blueberry were my favorite. I'm finding my loyalties a little divided right now.

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