Naturally, it didn't take me long to discover that 8 AAA batteries in a $2.99 Radio Shack holder will provide sufficient current to run a '75 Ford Elite seat belt buzzer all day long, and- in the mind of a 17-year-old under the influence of certain evil corruptors of youth just across the Bay- there really aren't too many mental steps between this realization and the idea of placing a battery-powered Ford seat belt buzzer in a high-school locker with the power switch in the ON position. BZZZEEEEEEEEEEEP!!! It'll drive everyone crazy! Ho ho!How My Youthful Junkyard Scrounging Habit Got My High School Evacuated By The Bomb Squad (Thanks, Murilee)
So, a few hours later I'm in physics class, having already mostly forgotten about the maddening Malaise soundtrack issuing from my junkyard pal's locker (I could never remember my own locker's combination, so I stashed it in my friend Scott's locker), and my classmates notice some sort of commotion in the street outside. Cop cars all over the place! We're all crowding for a look out the window when several APD officers come into the classroom and ask the teacher to identify... me! Oh, shit! I get not-quite-frogmarched out of the room, it being clear that I'm in Big Fucking Trouble, and as I'm contemplating the reality that every wholesome Duran Duran-listening, lip-gloss enhanced girlie in the school will consider me a totally, radioactively untouchable, criminal for the rest of my high school days and probably- if I don't go to college in some other state- well beyond that, and I'm probably going to have to answer a lot of very pointed questions from the kind of humorless Authority Figures I dreaded most, it occurs to me that perhaps this whole hassle might have something to do with my harmless seat belt buzzer prank.
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I write books. My latest is a YA science fiction novel called Homeland (it's the sequel to Little Brother). More books: Rapture of the Nerds (a novel, with Charlie Stross); With a Little Help (short stories); and The Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow (novella and nonfic). I speak all over the place and I tweet and tumble, too.
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