The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

The news site of Santa Barbara City College.

The Channels

Column – High-school mischief marks witching hour

Losing your virginity, first high school party, getting chased by cops – everyone has their own tale about the first night they snuck out. And while my night reeks of eighth-grade innocence, I bet it still beats yours.

First, to explain. I’m a loser. A geek. It’s known, and now published. Big whoop. But am I original? Hell yes! You wish you could dream this stuff up.

One cold wintry night, in the wee hours of the darkness, my best friend and I set out to deliver Hogwarts acceptance letters to the local neighborhood youth.

We sprinted down sidewalks, leapt behind bushes, jumped over fences, tippy-toed to doorsteps. Then we darted from sensor lights, dashed across intersections, dodged the timed sprinklers and raced back home.

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We had worked for days to fade the paper for our letters just right, staining it with root beer and burning the edges with the lighter I’d pocketed one day in an attempt to feel older. Verbatim from the book, in immaculate green-inked cursive, were the congratulations of acceptance and the lists of school supplies needed for one’s first year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

It seemed like a funny kitchen-table project at first, but the degree of perfection we achieved gave us a natural high. So we continued.

Six copies were signed with six signatures of “Minerva McGonagall,” which I had to convince my mom to forge with no questions asked.

Big H’s stamped in melted red crayons made it official.

We planned the sleepover, got the backpacks and went to bed early. At the sound of the cell phone alarm fixed to midnight, we set out to the streets.

Our uniforms consisted of black ninja clothes, black ninja face paint, black not-so-ninja bandanas, Sailor Moon-ninja pigtail buns and red lipstick.

Lipstick, ’cause we were classy messenger-ninjas. And so we crept.

Six letters hand-made, six letters delivered. A successful first sneak out, I’d say. When morning came around and my dad didn’t mention anything shenanigan-esque over bacon, I knew it was done.We’d gotten away with it, and it was secret!

But not as secret as I guess we’d hoped. Fantasy fanatics are in short supply back home in San Jose, and we were soon unmasked.

I guess kids at school paid more attention to us than we thought. They knew about the Nimbus 2000 and golden snitch we hack-sawed during woodshop the previous trimester.

They remembered our “Have You Seen This Wizard?” t-shirts we wore at the last book premiere. They had noticed our extended hands and forceful “Ups” when we dropped things on the floor.

I guess in the end, it didn’t take a group of wizards to put two and two together. And my reputation was made.

Even if that makes me a geek, you just can’t deny the magic that happened that night.

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