Today is National Chewing Gum Day and it spurred a memory from my youth. My thievery started at just seven years-old, but in my defense, Black Jack Gum was REALLY good. I wasn't very good at hiding the evidence and of course, I got caught.

Barb Birgy

Do you remember Black Jack Chewing Gum? The gum was invented all that way back in 1884 and it had that black licorice taste that was just SO good. I must have loved it a lot, because I resorted to stealing it. My memory isn't very good as I've gotten older, but this memory has always stuck with me. Probably because of how much trouble that I got into.

My Mom was amazing, but you didn't challenge her, defy her or disappoint her. I did all of the above on that day when I was just seven years-old. Mom was checking out in the grocery line and there, with a beacon of light shining down on the end cap, was MY favorite gum. I grew up in the 70s' and you didn't act out in the grocery store. You didn't ask Mom to buy you anything and you, for sure, didn't steal. But, I did and stuck the pack of gum in my pants. I knew that I was wrong, but I wanted to put that sweetness in my mouth as soon as I got home.

I got away with chewing the first three sticks of gum and on the fourth it was over for me. I was hiding the wrapper evidence by flushing them down the toilet. Well, this time the wrapper floated back up to the top of the water. I didn't notice it, but my Mom sure did and to say that I got punished, is an understatement. I had to take the rest of the gum back to the store, apologize to the manager and pay for it. I was SO scared, but not as scared as I was, when I knew the punishment yet to come. Spankings happened back then and I got a whopper. I was grounded from playing with my neighborhood friends for two weeks. Luckily, when my Mom would say to "just wait until your Dad gets home," I knew Dad was a softy and the punishment would truly be over.

I deserved every single bit of the punishment that I received, but those first three sticks of gum, were pretty awesome! Did you ever steal anything as a child?

Enter your number to get our free mobile app