Heather fits right into my family: we are all neurotic. Somehow it manages to work. Heather is a thin, petite, cute girl who likes quilting and sewing, and she just graduated with honors and a membership in some snobby-ass fraternity for people with near-perfect GPAs. She's very liberal and we spend long hours in front of the TV bitching about sexism in advertising and how the country is going to hell.
Anyways, you wouldn't look twice at her because she's so normal.
A few hours after I got back from A-kon and was crashing, exhausted, she came by to smoke. This is really just an excuse to hold a gab-session. We will be very good old ladies together. I sat in front of the laptop, she sat on the couch, we lit up our cigarettes, and I told her about A-kon and she told me about her visit to my parents'.
"Hey," she said, "you'll never guess what I did. Please don't tell Jarod."
My first thought - "What the hell?! You had sex with someone else?"
"No, no." She buried her face in her hands and groaned. "I shoplifted."
"You - "
I thought back to years past, when life was simpler and Yvonne and I were still friends, and - yes, you know what's next. It's Yvonne. She was poor, I was a puppy eager for love and acceptance. "Oh, Heather," I said. "Jewelry? Cooking ware? A nice quilt you couldn't afford?"
She put out her cigarette and held out her hands for another one. I tossed the pack to her. "No," she said. "I was at Walmart, and I was buying toilet paper, and I needed some thread for something I'm making. And they were like, a dollar forty-seven, and it's just ridiculous that you have to pay that much for a spool of thread. So I stole it."
I was silent for a long time, trying to process this. It was so in-character that it shouldn't have been that hard, but I couldn't really produce the mental image of someone sneaking out a spool of thread. "I can't believe you stole thread," I said.
She had the decency to look ashamed. "I felt like I was sticking it to the man."
"Yes," I said, "I know that feeling very well."
I'm sure The Man will be feeling the loss of $1.47 for a long, long time to come. Can he ever recover? Will our capitalist society collapse? Who knows?