In May of 2006, the saga of Lake Highlands’ Muffin Men was a national story, from network news to late-night talk shows. A year later, Advocate Magazine recalled the day marijuana-laced muffins were delivered to the LHHS teachers lounge through the eyes of Miss Rita Greenfield, the 87-year-old school office worker who spent a night in the hospital after enjoying two tainted treats. Now, finally, the mother of one of the boys has written a book and told the story from her perspective – as a mom trying to hold her family together.
Caroline Walker changes the names of the boys in her book, available only for Kindle on Amazon and entitled Epiphany in Ordinary Time, but the story is fresh enough and has been written about enough here in LH that it seems silly for me to pretend not to know it. Her son, Ian, is called Niall in the book, and she focuses more on him and on her own family’s ways of getting through the ordeal than on the role of Joey Tellini (called Matt in the book), who cooked up the idea of the muffins and asked his friend to deliver them.
Caroline tells the head-spinning story of watching her beloved, honor student, Eagle Scout son face meltdown just as his life was beginning. Knowing that his troubles were of his own making didn’t make things easier for the mom who’d spent 18 years raising him up. By the time their family life became a maze of criminal lawyers and FBI agents, she admits she wasn’t sure how any of them would get through it.
Today, both boys are University of Texas honor graduates and Caroline has gained some perspective. She hopes other moms whose kids face difficulties can find strength (and, yes, even humor) in her experience.
You can download Epiphany in Ordinary Time for just $2.99 to your Kindle here. It’s worth much more than that price just to read chapter 7, in which LHHS principal at the time, Dr. Bob Iden (who’s name is also changed), graciously welcomes the Walkers into his office to accept the boy’s written letter of apology. Dr. Bob surprises them with his kindness (Caroline admits she’s never set foot inside a public school) and won’t let them leave without meeting Miss Rita. When Miss Rita opens her arms wide and offers a hug, Caroline melts into her “like butter on a baked potato.”
If you thought you knew this boy, if you’d already judged this mom, Caroline Walker gives you a chance to think again.