While in the army stationed Fort Myer, Virginia, I had at least to keep a bunk in the barracks the year I was there, even if I was living off post, because legally I had not enough rank to live elsewhere. The first quarters I lived was the second floor of an old two story wood barracks, partitioned with thin wood walls and containing three metal cots, with curtains for doors not reaching to the floor. Directly outside in the hall was a public pay phone. It was discovered that if one put five coins into the phone to pay for a call, the coins would be returned in the change slot; so that one could make a call -- run up any size charge, and use the same five coins to pay for the whole thing. When word got around it wasn't long before army people, who were complete strangers to this barracks, began to show up and talk to say Okinawa or Japan, for as much as an hour at a time. Then we had to listen to them circulate the same five coins through the telephone for a half hour or longer. Eventually the phone company got wise and word was passed to the authorities, and an investigation was begun to recover the lost revenue. But like any investigation I have ever heard of in the army, many were questioned but no one knew anything. So the phone was fixed and nothing was ever heard of it again.
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