I'd Like to Come CleanI have this one memory that's been nagging at me for over twenty-five years that I wanted to share. I was fourteen and in junior high at the time. I wasn't exactly the kind of kid who acted out and did wild and crazy things. I was actually pretty withdrawn and shy. I'd like to think for the most part I was a nice kid, but I remember at one point I developed this bizarre habit of stealing my classmates' homework assignments. I'm not sure why I did it. It just became sort of a compulsion; a variation of kleptomania I guess.I didn't even use them to copy off of - I just took them and threw them in the trash. I was never caught doing it. if I had been, I'm sure I would've gotten in serious trouble, possibly even expelled.
Fortunately I outgrew this phase. One day I guess I just sort of realized how serious it was, and started learning to control my impulses. In order to clear my conscience, I thought about going and telling the principal what I had done, but ultimately I never did. Looking back, I think I was right not to. I mean, what purpose would that have served? I think he probably would've just as soon not known about it if he didn't absolutely have to, so he wouldn't have to do anything. The most important thing was I stopped doing it.
At some point later, I did a few nice things for those people whose homework I'd stolen, without telling them why.