I lied to my mom and lived to tell the tale …
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When I was 8, it was all Megos, all the time. So after school, I’m watching TV and this comes on:
And the skies opened and the Lord spake and He said, “Young Daniel, you must have this for Chanukah.”
And it was good.
We were not a family of means. My folks had split and my Mom did the best she could. So asking for a Batcave was no guarantee. But ask I did. Over and over again.
Anyway, late some Saturday afternoon, with the skies dark and Hanukkah right around the corner, I found that I just couldn’t take the suspense any longer. I had to know: Did I get the Batcave or not?
So while Mom was downstairs ironing in our Old Bridge, N.J., garden apartment, I crept into her bedroom and went into her closet, where I knew she hid the presents. I burrowed to the back and saw the piles of swag still in shopping bags. I poked and prodded as quietly as I could. And there, in shadow, was a box that looked just like this:
Oh, my Lord, there it was. It may have been the most exciting moment of my young life. It was a moment rivaled only by the first time the skies opened and I saw Mego Batman and Robin for the first time, standing on my friend Phillip Tagliaferri’s dresser.
Also there? Mego Batgirl. And, if memory serves, that clog with a propeller they called the Batcopter.
Then dread. And guilt. I got what I wanted, sure. But I found out in such a sleazy fashion. I cheated!
But I wasn’t stupid enough to confess.
I went back downstairs, and hey, guess what Mom asked me: “So, Daniel, what do you want for Chanukah?”
Think fast! Think fast! Does she know? Think fast!
“Oh, um, I dunno, a Batcopter, I guess…” — and, in order to throw her off the scent, I made up some other things.
But I also knew if I didn’t mention the Batcave, she’d smell a rat. But I also wanted her to know that she did right by me. She’d been through enough shit even an 8-year-old could see it.
So, I added: ” … and, of course, I really want a Batcave.”
She just kept ironing.
So Chanukah came and I opened the presents and life, it was good.
Years later, when I mistakenly thought I was over comics, that Batcave and all the Mego figures and vehicles that went with it, made their way to the curb.
Well, I’ve managed to rebuild that collection, in a fashion. Plus, now with companies like Figures Toy Company and Diamond Select Toys building their Wayback Machines, everything old is new again.
As an adult, I finally ‘fessed up and told my mother this story and she said she’d had no idea. She thought it was amusing, though.
But you know what?
I never snooped again.
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