Tuesday, June 21, 2011
7 Things I'm Sure You Don't Know About Me
I was tagged some time ago to write a "Seven Things You Probably Don't Know About Me" post and I'm just getting around to it now. I wasn't planning on doing it at all until I saw Alan Ryker's post, which was great.
I once helped my big sister torture the neighborhood brat. Put the phone down, there's no need to call the FBI. He deserved it and we let him live.
This is the kid that would zoom by on his bike while yelling "Na-na-na-na-na" or call you poopyhead or tell you that you're ugly. THAT kid. Everyone on the block hated him. One day I saw a litte crowd in the neighbor's garage, including two of my little sisters. As there was nothing else to do in a town of 12,000 in Central California in the late 60s, I went to investigate. A group of kids were standing around the brat, who had dropped his pants for everyone--recall the little sisters--to inspect his little dangly. THAT kid.
We'd had enough. My sister snatched him from his yard and we took him out to a sticker patch in the vacant lot behind our house. We wrapped a rope around him, made sure he was barefoot, and dragged him around the sticker patch while he blubbered. Good fun was had by all, well two of us, and his behavior took a decided turn for the good.
I don't like other people's kids, they bug me, so don't ask me to watch yours while you run to the drug store. I like my own just fine, though. This may have something to do with thing number one.
I refuse to go camping unless there's a hotel there. I'm a magnet for leaky or defective air mattresses. The last few times I went camping the air mattress sprung a leak and I ended up with a rock in my kidney for four hours. Once, when I got tricked into going on some Boy Scout campout with my sons, we had set up our tent on an opening of recently mowed scrub brush. A stick poked through the bottom of the tent, punctured my air mattress, and jabbed me in the kidney all night. Tried and groggy, I had to spent the day with other people's kids. You how I feel about that.
I love the outdoors, but I want a hot shower in the morning without having to feed quarters into a box and worry about parasites burrowing into my feet. So if the wife wants me to come along on a camping trip, she knows it's got to be a hotel-camping trip.
I was 6'4" in high school and played basketball. In the early 70s you couldn't dunk the ball and there was no three-point line. Old-school ball, I know. We also wore short-shorts. When warming up before one game, I dunked it when I thought the ref wasn't looking. He was, called a technical foul, and the game started with the other team shooting a free throw. When coach asked me why I did it, I said I was trying to get the team pumped up. I rode pine the first quarter.
I have three sons who are Eagle Scouts. I hated scouting growing up but loved it for my boys. It's a great program. The last one barely made it, finishing his Eagle project a week before he turned eighteen. (It had to be done before his eighteenth birthday--no exceptions.) So much for a scout being prepared.
I once hit a home run that won the championship for our team.
In the 60s, where I grew up, boys played city league baseball or football. Nowadays every patch of grass in town has a bunch of other people's kids kicking a soccer ball around. I didn't play soccer until I was a senior in high school and then only once. It was so foggy that morning that if you kicked the ball hard you couldn't see where it went. We had a blast. Anyway, the town had a Jet League, a Minor League, and a Major League. My story took place during the final game of the Jet League.
Bottom of the sixth--we had six-inning games in Jet League--and the game is tied. Two outs, of course, and no one on base when I come to bat. I hit the ball into right field, where our opponent's best player played. If you know anything about baseball at that young age, you know he may have been their best hitter but had to be their worst fielder or he wouldn't have been in right field.
As I'm running to first I see the ball go between the right fielder's legs, so I turn the corner and head for second. I slide as the ball sails over the shortstop's glove, get up and race for third. My teammates and coach are yelling and screaming at me to run faster and stop and go back and slide while the other team is yelling at their players. Everyone in the stands are yelling and screaming.
IA third of the way to third base, I see coach waving me back to second. As I turn, I see the ball sail over the third baseman's head. I reverse directions again, tag third and head for home. The ball rattles around the chain link fence behind third for several seconds before the third baseman picks it up and chucks it home. Ten feet in front of home plate, I trip and fall to my hands and knees. The catcher drops the throw from third and I crawl plate before he can retrieve it and tag me out.
My teammates throng me, yelling and grabbing and shaking and whacking me on the back. I feel hands close around my throat and almost get strangled to death before I shake our fat catcher off. Maybe that's where the other-people's-kids thing started. Coach bought me a snow cone after the game. I picked bubblegum flavor.
So you see, I didn't really hit a home run: I hit a single and scored on four errors.
One more quick baseball story. I played two years in high school and spent a good deal of time in right field. Now, now. Don't be mean. I had a good arm and twice threw guys out at first. They thought they had an easy single and were taking their sweet time running to first.
I believe in the power of prayer. Here's how it started.
When about six years old, I was given a cowboy set: a gun with plastic holster, a hat, and a shiny sheriff's star; hot stuff. We didn't have a whole lot then so I loved that gift. One day I couldn't find the star. Tore the house apart and couldn't find it. We'd been taught to pray so I knelt down and offerred up a fervent prayer. Before the prayer was over the image of where the badge lay hidden entered my mind. I went to the place and found it.
Thanks to all the good people who thought of me when they passed along a blog award. If you don't already visit their blogs, you should.
Donna K. Weaver