Posts Tagged ‘Childhood Memories’

Party All The Time

August 28, 2017

Hypothetical question here but say you’re invited to a middle school classmate’s birthday party. You don’t particularly care for the guy but you feel compelled to attend because he’s a friend of a friend. When is it polite to leave said gathering? After you drop off the gift? After cake and ice cream? is served After the pinata and pin the tail on the donkey? After his mom, Mrs. Misenheimer, having a few Sea Breezes inside of her, takes you upstairs and makes you a man?

I’m curious because now that I look back on the whole bizarre incident I’m beginning to feel a little guilty for skipping out early and I’m thinking I should’ve at least stayed for the opening of the gifts.

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If Wishes Were Hippies

August 4, 2017

There was a time when everything was groovy and people thought it was a nifty idea to encourage kids to grow up to be redwood trees. Many people were high and most of them were full of themselves and lava lamps and love beads and waterbeds were used without irony in this magical time. This was the 1970s, an era that gave us the SuperFriends and H. R. Pufnstuf and Hong Kong Phooey and stream of consciousness fare like this – Make A Wish. Seriously, this was a show. For children. And it was wonderful!

Din Mother

July 10, 2017

webelo

One time, in fifth grade, I was having a cub scout meeting at my place and this neighbor came over – I think his name was Mr. Hopnagle – and he complained about all the noise we kids were making. (We lived in a crappy apartment with paper-thin walls, a far cry from the crappy apartment with cardboard-thin walls I live in today.) My mom, whom I suspect had been putting up with a pack of screaming Webelos only by way of a bottle of Jim Beam she kept hidden in the toilet tank, tried to dissuade the neighbor from contacting the landlord and having us evicted. Eventually, they both went into the bedroom and put on the soundtrack to Urban Cowboy real loud. After about ten minutes, Mr. Hopnagle came out to the living room and got a couple of Pasbt out of the fridge and some nylon cords we were using to practice knot tying and he went back inside the bedroom. About five minutes later I heard my mom scream Tom Selleck’s name. Then Mr. Hopnagle left and my mom came out and told all the kids to go home even though we hadn’t worked out all the plans for the upcoming pinewood derby. We got evicted two weeks later, however, not because Hopnagle complained but because my dad was found passed out drunk and naked in the laundry room.

Sick Leave

June 30, 2017

In my fourth grade class, this kid everyone hated got sick. It was like mono or something. And he had to stay home for several months. We were all glad because, as I said, we didn’t like him. He was a bit of a bully and would often act out during story time or recess and we’d all get yelled at and have to lay our heads on our desks and have a time out. Thing was, the teacher made us all make Get Well cards. I made mine a word search with phrases like “you stink” and “I hate you” and “die” hidden in among “feel better” and “eat soup” and the like. He never came back to school although his mom did send a note saying thank you to most of the class for their nice words. I used to think I was responsible for his not returning but I later found out he had simply missed too much class and had to repeat the grade. Still, I took credit for it and was the hero of J. Y. Joyner Elementary for the rest of the school year!

A Little Night Hooey

April 29, 2017

When my kids were small they’d sometimes call out for a glass of water in the middle of the night. When they did, I’d always yell back, “I don’t wanna come in there – the monsters under your bed will eat me!” That sure kept ’em quiet.

Unfounded

March 10, 2017

When I was ten I played hide and seek with some kids in my neighborhood. There was this one little kid, Brucie, who kept getting found first because his hiding places weren’t very well thought out. He was maybe around 7 or 8 and he started to cry a little because he was so bad at the game. I tried to calm him down by telling him he had to be more creative in his hiding. Standing behind a small tree wasn’t enough. Inside things or under things was good. My stupid little pre-adolescent brain attempted to give this little crybaby a lesson in concealment like I was the head of MI5. Well, we started to play the game again and Brucie got this look on his face like he was going to crack this thing. As he trotted off down the street I heard him mutter, “I’ll show ’em all. They’ll never find me.”

And he was right. We never saw him again. Being kids, we stopped looking after about 10 minutes, figuring he’d gone home or something. But we saw cops at Brucie’s house that night and Missing posters popped up around the neighborhood the next day. His family moved away about a year later. They never found Brucie.

I’d like to imagine that some day, decades from now, somebody’ll be doing some yard work or renovating a garden shed and find an 80-year-old Brucie stashed away in a hole in the ground or behind some lawnmowers and rakes. Still hiding. Because, as he said, he’d show us all.

Tales From My Screwed-Up Childhood #11

July 25, 2016

When I was a kid, my Uncle Manny would always come over and say, “Hey, kid, I wanna give you something special!” Then he’d do something juvenile like give me a wedgie or a noogie or a purple nurple or swirly or something like that. And then he’d laugh all nasally and weird.

The first few times, I came a-running, expecting something really cool. By the time I was 12, I learned to hide in the priest hole in the back of my closet whenever I saw his ’69 Pontiac Firebird come up the driveway.

Last I heard, Manny was driving an RV cross-country. Not his RV, mind you … which would explain the police pursuit.