This is the third and final installment in my Purloined Pig-Skin mini-series. (See below for Parts I and II)
…My son was a wreck. He was mulling over how he was going to inform his step-father his wife was spending the night in jail. Our stomachs were churning. There were now four policeman standing at the railing above us. David’s Dad volunteered to be my attorney. But then something weird happened. Nothing happened. They left us alone. Northwestern had scored again forcing the game into overtime. We begin to think, maybe we can pull this off. The game finally ended. I had taken off my Northwestern purple so I did not look like a fan. My lawyer/ ex husband and I, the purloined pig skin in tow, exited the stands one way, my son and friends departed in the opposite direction. We were immediately swept up in the crowd and were swept down and out of the stadium. I refused to discuss the caper for fear of being overheard. I didn’t hear my cell phone ringing as my son frantically tried to reach me thinking we had been stopped or seized. Our level of paranoia was perhaps out of proportion relative to the potential consequences. But the intimidation impressed upon us by the police was sufficient to make us fearful.
Eventually we all rendezvoused back at our car. I refused to let anyone even open the offending backpack until we were out of Hillsborough County. We finally stopped at a Starbuck’s in Polk County and examined our take. The next day, still shaken from our petty larceny, the fabulous five signed the ball to commemorate the experience. I was Lightfingers Liz Kitchens. Even though I am currently in possession of the ball, I didn’t take it for myself. I did it for my son. I love him so much. And he loves sports and Northwestern University. I knew this would be a big deal for him. Little did I know just how much.
Epilogue: Auburn University won the game after going into double overtime.