Teri Vance: Pranksters learn a lesson
Shenanigans were afoot in Carson City a couple of weeks ago. As the days get cooler and darkness comes sooner, Mother Nature is letting us know the summer is coming to a close. That is making some people desperate to get as much time possible outside — but that’s not always a good idea.
Just ask Barry Smith.
Barry, the executive director of the Nevada Press Association, was rudely jolted awake two Fridays ago.
“It was around 11:30 p.m., and I was sound asleep,” he recounted. “The doorbell rang, then Pepper started barking. I sprang up and went to the front door.”
He looked around, but didn’t see any activity.
“But I could see that across the street, the neighbors were up,” he said. “It was strange for that time of night.”
He thought he heard a noise in the backyard, so went to have a look back there.
“While I was looking out back, the doorbell rang again,” he said. “This time, I saw a couple of little figures scurrying down the street.
“I realized it was just kids playing a prank.”
But Barry wasn’t playing.
“I put on my shoes, and my shirt and pants,” he said. “I looked at Pepper and said, ‘Let’s go get ’em.’”
He caught up to one of the boys — the other went into hiding — who had already been cornered by a neighbor.
He said the boys were likely around 10 years old.
“I really let him have it,” Barry said. “I told him, ‘Never underestimate how grumpy I can be when you wake me up in the middle of the night.’ And I told him they didn’t just wake me up, but they woke up my dog, too.”
Eventually, the ruckus died down, and everyone retreated to their respective homes.
But it wasn’t quite over yet.
The next day, the boys each delivered letters to Barry’s door.
One said, “Neighbors, sorry for waking you up and ding dong diching you at 11:30 and we will never do it agen.”
The other read: “Neighbors, sorry for waking your dogy up and you. I know you need your sleep because … you need to wake up early. We won’t do it again.”
This boy drew a hamburger and fries on the note as well, with an arrow pointing to the drawing. Next to the arrow, it said, “I’m sorry so I made a picture of a hamburger.”
Barry said the boys also offered to buy him a drink of his choice from Dutch Bros, but he declined.
“I told them the apology was enough,” he said.
In the end, he said, the boys won him over.
“I was definitely mad at them when they woke me up,” he said. “But in the long run, there’s a lot worse things kids could do than run around ringing doorbells.
“I’m sure I pulled a few pranks in my day.”
Plus, every prank needs a curmudgeon.
“It’s kind of fun playing the grumpy old man sometimes,” Barry said. “Even though I wasn’t really mad, I didn’t want them thinking they got away with something. That wouldn’t be any fun for them either.”