"What are you doing in there?" Grandma hollered through the locked bathroom door. "Nothing," I answered. "Are you 'having trouble?' " Grandma asked. "No!" I was quick to respond. If Grandma even suspected you were 'having trouble' in the bathroom, there would be a spoonful of Green Drops waiting for you upon your exit, and that stuff was a punishment worse than any kind of bathroom trouble.
"I'm almost finished," I yelled back to her, as I turned a small piece of the corner of the page to mark my place, and stuffed the magazine quickly back in the linen closet. A needless flush later, and trying to look as nonchalant as possible, I exited the bathroom and hoped Grandma wasn't standing there with a spoon and that bottle of nasty green liquid.
I was reading her True Stories. She knew I was reading her True Stories. I knew *she* knew I was reading her True Stories. Such forbidden tales as "A Case of Cradle Robbing" or "My Runaway Wife" or "I Am the Other Woman" were about as close to excitement as it got in my small town life. And to a young girl on the cusp of being a teenager, this glimpse into mysterious and exciting adult lives was too much to resist.
Grandma and I apparently were not alone in our enjoyment of this magazine and the exotic lifestyles and stories it featured. According to Wikipedia, True Story came into existence in 1919, and in the next few years circulation soared, and the magazine lasted 92 years before the publisher finally pulled the plug.
One afternoon, to my dismay, the magazines were no longer in the linen closet in the bathroom. I did a thorough search (more than once), but Grandma apparently found a better place to store them, at least temporarily. Being unable to find their new hiding place was driving me crazy. They did at some point make their way back into the bathroom closet, and my extended bathroom breaks resumed. Did Grandma know I was reading her True Stories again? Of course. Couldn't hide anything from that woman. But she never did move them again.