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Hartselle Enquirer

Boys will be boys 

By Clif Knight 

There was never a dull moment in the lives of my siblings and me – and some of our friends – when we were teenagers in the 1940s and 1950s. 

As 14- and 15-year-olds, we could be found in the cotton and cornfields hoeing, plowing or picking cotton during the daylight hours of the long, hot summers; otherwise, we would be fishing or swimming in a nearby creek during a rain break or pulling a prank on some unsuspecting motorist under the cover of night. 

We came up with the idea of placing an overnight bag in the middle of the highway to see how motorists would react to its presence when passing. The catch was, it was attached to a long length of stout fishing line we used to yank it off the highway when a motorist stopped to pick it up.  

The black leather bag appeared to be something of value and prompted most passersby to either stop or slow down for a closer look. Meanwhile, we were hidden in a branch culvert under the highway, laughing with the bag in hand, as the motorist was trying to figure out what happened to it.  

Some of them would even search for it on both sides of the highway before driving away. 

The prank worked flawlessly several times before it ended unexpectedly.  

A driver of a convertible slowed down and then struck the bag before we had time to retrieve it. His car dragged the bag several feet before it stopped. Then he jumped out and grabbed the bag, string and all.  

As we ran, we heard him yell, “There’s no need to run. I know who you are.”  

An hour later, we returned to the scene but found no bag. We walked 200 yards to a service station to buy a Coke. The owner removed the bag from behind the counter and asked if we wanted to keep it.  

As we claimed the tattered remains, he laughed and suggested we get rid of it and find a different way to have fun.  

 

 

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