My dad taught me that if you walked with purpose and studied nonchalance you could gain access to all manner of places you didn't really belong. On a visit to his hometown of Boston, we found ourselves in the vicinity of Fenway Park. It was the off season, but as we drove by he spied an open gate. He parked the car, and in we went. I hung back, appalled, convinced that any minute we'd be arrested. But we were never challenged, and I got the grand tour. It probably helped that my dad was forever being mistaken for a police detective: tall, ramrod posture, long overcoat and fedora. He went on to reveal how, as a young adult, he and his cronies would drop into various hotel functions for free drinks and food when money was tight.
This was a lesson I appreciated but never learned to put into practice myself ; I have a terrible poker face. But the tour of the ballpark and the image of my straitlaced dad as the original wedding crasher – priceless.