It was near 5 a.m. on a warm spring night in early May. I was twelve years old at the time and delivering newspapers on my route. I had just started my deliveries when I saw a 1970s style big black Lincoln Continental drive down the street and make a big turn into an alley and then cut right to make another turn to head down another alley. Suddenly the car stopped and all I could see were the cherry red brakes light flare up. There was a popping noise and the trunk opened. Footsteps then scraped over the gravel in the alley and a older man appeared, but he was too far away for me to make an accurate identification.
He circled the vehicle, opened the trunk and heaved out a black bag. Without hesitation he dragged it over to the bush that was in behind the alley. He then entered the bush with the garbage bag and vanished for a couple of minutes. When he re-emerged from the bush he no longer had the garbage bag. The nondescript man hopped back into the car and stepped on the gas. Two puffs of smoke came out of the exhaust and poof! The car was gone. I waited a couple seconds and slowly made my way to the alley. I craned my head around the corner of a fence and the big Lincoln was gone. I made my way into the bush.
It was ultra dark in the thicket but within a couple of minutes I saw a shiny black substance. It was the garbage bag. I felt the outside of it; whatever was inside was hard but had sharp edges at the same time. I made a small hole in the garbage bag and stuck my hand inside. I pulled out a couple of glossy magazines. I could see faintly through the bit of street light that had worked its way through the bushes that the magazines were of the dirty, adult variety. I had hit pay dirt.
I left them in the bush and finished my paper route the whole time thinking about how I would get the magazines home without my parents seeing them. I decided to leave the bag in the bush and take home as many as I could every day until the bag was empty and hide them in my room.
When I got home that day I had a quick peek at them and they were quality mags such as Playboy, Penthouse and Hustler; no raunchy junk like Swank or High Society. I had a gold mine. It took me about a week to get all of them home and when I counted them I had 523 magazines total.
Every day I brought a couple to school and spread the words that I had quality porn mags for sale. The price: $20 per magazine. You gotta remember this was 1989. There was no internet at the time and if you wanted adult mags and movies you either had to steal them or pay through the nose from a black market dealer. Day after day before class, after class, on lunch and after school I peddled porn from my locker.
Then one day I arrived to school and the assistant principal Mrs. Hardon told me to open up my locker. I was busted. I slowly opened it and inside was a huge stash of mags. She grabbed one and thumbed through the pages and told me it was disgusting and that my parents would be notified, but my dad would probably have a good laugh and secretly be proud of me for being such an entrepreneur. I also would be given the strap by the feared principal, Mr. Baylor who was also known as Mr.B. He was a former evangelical preacher turned teacher disciplinarian who had banned heavy metal music from the school because he said it was, "Satan's music."
The next day I waited in the hallway across from his office. Through the window I could see his secretary and see Mr. Baylor in his office which was a glass room that had curtains to be pulled back for privacy. Today they would be yanked tight when I got the strap.
I had never gotten the strap but I had known many that had and they told me to rub vaseline on my ass cheeks which would lessen the pain. So beforehand I lubed up my cheeks nice and shiny.
I sat and waited in the hall. Finally his secretary came out and signaled me to come in and sit down. I waited some more. I could see inside Mr. Baylor's office where there was the strap hanging off the glass right where I could see it. He knew I was there but pretended that he didn't see me. He made me wait which was the real suffering. A couple minutes later I saw him pick up his phone and a second later his secretary picked up hers. The next thing I knew she was waving me to go inside. I got up and said a quick prayer even though I wasn't religious, but somehow I thought it would help. I went inside.
I closed the door behind me and just stood there like a dork not knowing what to do. I could see the confiscated adult material on his desk. I was embarrassed and trembling at the same time. The massive Mr. Baylor got up from behind his desk and closed the drapes. I then looked at the strap in his hand which he slapped in the palm of his other hand. He then said, "I hope you didn't smear vaseline on your cheeks because that makes the strap bite and sting even more."
After a few seconds of staring me down he reached in his pocket and pulled out his wallet and said, "How many magazines can I get for $50?"