A Dime, Bazooka, and Lost Bounty

I remember two specific houses that I always wanted to avoid when trick-or-treating as a kid. One was a woman down the street who would take a dime, a cotton ball, a piece of orange tissue paper and make little mini jack-o-lanterns with the dime as the flat base, the cotton on top wrapped tightly with orange tissue and the face drawn on with black marker. Borrrrrring. Yet, she was so before her time. That would be something I would find today on Pinterest. As a kid though, I thought it was such a waste. A dime? Really. I got more from the tooth fairy, and that was not saying much.

The second house was about five streets back where the houses were larger and usually occupied by doctors and dentists. I knew most everyone in my neighborhood due to the afternoon newspaper I delivered to a large percentage of the neighborhood, and the many, many years of Girl Scout cookies I sold. This particular house was owned by a dentist and again, borrrring. They did not hand out apples, but rather Bazooka gum. Which out of all the gums it was more of the sugary kind, but I was not a gum girl. I guess gum, even with a little sugar, was better then getting a dime on Halloween.

I do remember one year when I was the last kid to the dentist’s house, or maybe they were just done for the night. They gave me the rest of their bag of Bazooka. That was like winning the lottery as a kid, especially as a kid who rarely had candy and treats at home. I took it home and of course hid it from my sister and brother. I learned early on that to share meant it would be gone in moments and I would have to wait until next year. In our house when treats were like water in the desert, you found ways to hide your bounty. Funny how “hiding” meant under your pillow. I am sure I had many lumpy nights of sleep. Until many months later when my sister and I found the bag of Bazooka under my bed, hard as a rock. It must have fallen under the bed while I slept and I had forgotten about that gum. There was no way that we could ever chew any of it, the entire bag like tiny bricks. An interesting thing that happens when you do not share. Sometimes your bounty just goes to waste.


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