Tuesday, June 26, 2007


Dang, I thought that was a great movie. I so was Jess in the 7th grade. A kid named Howard and another named Jimmy used to smack the crap out of me. One sat behind me and one next to me in Michigan History Class. Old Mr. Mckinnon, blind in one eye and couldn't see out of the other, would leave the room and I was the entertainment for them. Dark haired, dark eyed Jackie Byrne, my first love, would flush her flawless milky-white cheeks in embarassment as I'd sit there both in terror and in anger holding back because of the last time I'd gotten in trouble for fighting (dad said never again). One day I just had enough. I asked my dad for some advice and he gave the kind I always find myself giving, "I wouldn't give a nickel for someone that starts a fight but I wouldn't give a nickel for someone that doesn't stand up for himself". The parable of the nickel. I can still hear my dad's voice as moved breathlessly in the steamy silage alternating forkfulls down to a feed wagon we were filling up. The dance of the silage. Now OSHA would fine us for going in that silo but it smelled awesome and felt awesome and my dad gave me permission to slug a guy in the mouth.

The next day I did just that. It was just like the picture of Jess slugging Scrogins or whatever his name was at the end of Terabithia. Howard slugged me in the cheek from behind and I stood up, turned around and let him have it full force and knocked him backwards out of his desk (he was leaning cockily on the back two legs but it was a nice added affect) Jackie Byrne gleamed at me with a twinkle in her eye and when we soaked our clarinet reeds in band class later I looked as courageous as I could (with a clarinet reed in my mouth) as she related what happened to the other people in band and I was someone else that day.

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