How To Get Away With It

You are walking through your local dining hall, preparing to return your tray when you feel something - some indefinable force - pulling you back toward the serving area. "But I'm fully satiated," you say to yourself, only to feel your innermost subconscious slap you in the face and yell "Fool! Listen to me! Walk over there and cast your eyes upon the El Dorado of the dining hall!"

You listen and walk toward the dessert section when you see it - a tall cardboard cylinder of delicious, delicious ice cream, unopened and glowing with its rich, creamy aura. You step up to it and hear its words: "Take me. Put me in your bag and leave. You know you want me. I have toffee chips - I'm delicious."

"I'd love to," you respond, now beginning to get looks from the passers-by, "if there was only some way I could get away with it." A pause follows.

"You are a total wuss," the ice cream declares. "Put me down. My scrumptious caramel swirls want nothing to do with you." And you comply, for you indeed are a total wuss.

How many times has this happened to you? How many times have you seen some desired object looming on the horizon, practically begging you to take it, only to leave said object stranded simply because you were afraid of getting caught? If you're like me, then your answer is "Why, all the time, Casey, but what can I do about it?"

Fear not, loyal readers, for I have devised a plan - a full proof, all-purpose system that allows you to "get away with it," whatever "it" may be. And it's all here in this one-of-a-kind promotional column I have cleverly titled "How To Get Away With It." Here's how it works: Find something you want, take it, get caught and then proceed to one of the following six responsibility-shirking techniques, numbered for your convenience. It's that simple!

1). Point And Run: An oldie, but goodie. When someone catches you trying to get away with it, point behind them and yell something interesting, like "Look! Free melba toast!" or "Snakes on roller-skates!" When the authority figure turns to look, grab your loot and run like hell. Laugh maniacally if possible.

2). Develop a Charming, Impish Quality: How did Charlie Chaplin, Mao Tse Tung and Igor from Young Frankenstein get away with it? Simply by squinting their eyes, smiling and shrugging their shoulders in an adorable fashion. No one can be mad at you for peeing on their car if you look cute doing it.

3). Drink Alcohol: Alcohol does two things to people - it lowers their inhibitions and raises their insult tolerance level. So the next time you're at a party, don't just sit there asking yourself why Larry Louse can get away with saying so much about other people - ask yourself why you're not drinking more rum.

4). Knockout Gas Grenades: You know who gets away with everything they want? Ninjas. You know why? Because they have knockout gas. The RA on call who catches you fishing change out of the vending machine won't be telling his story to anyone when he's on the floor, unconscious. Run into the darkness after you throw one of these grenades, and make sure you yell, "ninja vanish!" in a raspy, mysterious voice for maximum efficiency.

5). Say It In Song: Anything stupid or offensive you can think of saying will be instantly softened by the comforting cushions of music. The only reason Adam Sandler is still alive is that he occasionally puts out a CD or something. This one is fun and creative - instead of telling your fiancé you no longer want to marry her because she ate all your muffins and likes French cinema, instead sing (to the tune of "Yankee Doodle"), "I think I'm going to call this off / You're not the girl I once knew / You eat like three sows at a trough / I hate Gérard Depardieu!" While she's still praising your sense of rhyme and melody, grab some of her CDs and run out the door.

6). Sleepwalk: If I've ever seen a carte blanche staring me in the face, it's sleepwalking. Not only can you get away with just about anything as long as you can do it with your eyes closed, but no one can stop you because they'll all be afraid of waking you up - all because of the ramblings of some bored old housewives. Thanks to them, you can finally pour that steaming pot of Earl Grey on your roommate's crotch at 5 AM without any repercussions.

Now go, my readers - go out there and do everything you've always wanted to do. Seize life, stick it in your pockets and pretend it was already gone when you got there. If someone catches you, now you know what to do … but don't tell them you've got a talking vat of ice cream for an alibi, because that just doesn't work. Trust me.