Gary Rinsem

Wait Until Dark

Two brothers united in fun at the expense of the third. A happy result despite the intent.

Only once before had my older brothers made an issue out of including me in their plans. I smelled a rat that time and smelled one this time. I was right both times. They were up to no good at my expense, but I didn't care, being included was the only thing that counted. Steve and Bob invited me to spend Saturday with them. I was far too young for their kind of day, it was reasonable for them to always exclude me. The plan included a first for me. It was a long walk to the bus stop, but I was excited about my first bus ride, all the way downtown. They each had a box of toothpicks in their pocket to soak in cinnamon extract. After the bus it was another walk to a pawn shop where a far out hippie sold small bottles of various extracts. Out front they jammed their bottles with toothpicks, to soak for later use. I discovered that chewing on cinnamon toothpicks was a fad with boys their age. For over 50 years this memory has surfaced each time I've passed the building where the pawn shop was in 1967. It makes me smile every time. Next we walked more, to the See's candy store on the opposite of the street. Incredibly, it's still there somehow. I've wondered for decades how it stays in business. Steve and Bob and I each got more chocolate than a kid should eat in a month. My choice was white chocolate, which I discovered years later isn't chocolate at all. A bit up the street we sat by the movie theater to eat chocolate, until movie time. I figured out their plan as we sat there. All talk with me, beginning as we left the house, was about the movie. I didn't enjoy looking around on the bus ride because Steve and Bob kept me preoccupied by telling me how scary the movie is. Near movie time now so they kept trying to build fear in me. It didn't work. I told them repeatedly that I knew what they were doing. With chocolate and popcorn we watched Wait Until Dark. My brothers talked in opposite ears throughout, trying to build fear. They kept saying "This is a really scary part" and "You're gonna have nightmares." They couldn't understand that their plan failed before it began. I saw TV and movies as people playing parts, not as something real. Actors acting isn't scary at all, just people doing their job. No chance they were giving me nightmares. Over the years I've been accused of having no imagination because I don't get sucked into stories. Maybe it's true, but Steve and Bob's plan to give me nightmares was a total flop while my plan to enjoy a day with my brothers was a total success. It's a great memory of a day trying to bond with brothers. Too bad the bond never formed. I wish I'd had brothers, the kind I saw many other boys had. I soon forgot the name of the movie and the lead actor, Audrey Hepburn. For reasons I never understood she has always been a favorite. Now I know why I never passed on one of her movies on TV, but it's been a long time since they stopped showing her. Recently I stumbled across her in an internet search and was looking through a list of her movies. Wait Until Dark jumped up and bit me like a rattlesnake. I can't believe I finally got to see that movie again. It only took minutes to find and download after more than five decades wondering what it was called. The vivid memories of scenes from this movie that I have remembered all my life, really are still accurate.

Steve and Bob,

I'm not planning any nightmares this time either.
The Pawn Shop is still here, burried in a minor addition on the left side of the entrance. It has a fake looking brick facade and I think it's been covered in stucco. Remove those and the fence that cages in drunks... I still see the pawn shop because the most important part is unchanged, the vertical marker with circles in it, the long standing symbol of a pawn shop. Around 2008, Susan and I tried to eat there, the food we were finally served was so bad we couldn't eat it. The place was nothing but an opium den for slobbering drunks, that's common now in old town Scottsdale. Take away the booze and most of the people who love old town, wouldn't have anything to do with it.

See's Candies is still there and unchanged since the 1960s. Susan and I had white chocolate and turtles to make up for the bad food at the opium den pawn shop.

The Kachina Theater is next on my list of places to revist, from this memory. I did an entire page of that. Click the "Next" button...