Well, ye mateys, they be plotting against me.
You saw what they did to my room, and now they say they’re bringing more.
It’s almost Halloween. I kind of expect that sort of thing this time of year.
All of those young whipper snappers are plotting, thinking they’re going to “go rolling,” saying they’re going to “get the old teacher.” I guess that would be “me”—”I” if I’m acting in the capacity of English/journalism teacher and I’m feeling like using proper grammar.
Young people, I don’t want to disappoint you, but you won’t get much fight out of me these days. I’ve already been there, done that. There is nothing I haven’t seen. Nothing I haven’t done.
Back in the day, I used to be the Chuck Norris of pranksters.
Back in the day.
I remember a time, back in the day, when Kenny and I were young, foolish, and pre-children. That was pre-Weight Watchers and pre-blood pressure medication too, but that’s another story.
We were coming home around twilight one evening and saw a little gold car, orbiting our neighborhood. We knew what was happening. Yard rollers were plotting, so we sought revenge.
Being young, foolish and agile, Kenny pulled on his black hoodie and his black graduation robe from college, and he climbed onto the roof of our house, armed with the water hose.
I had to plan my strategy.
Our school had just had its Homecoming festivities the previous week, and I had decorated my room with two “dummies” that looked like little hippies for our sixties theme. Oh, I spent so much time, creating their funny paper mache heads and stuffing newspaper in their psychodelic clothes.
The little dummies were adorable. I couldn’t throw them away, so I took them home and set them on straw bales in my front yard.
I donned my black hoodie, my graduation robe and a mask. I sat in between the dummies on the bales of straw.
Three little dummies.
Then they pulled up. Two guys. Two girls. Giggling.
The boys went to work immediately, tossing their rolls high in the trees, but the girls tied dainty toilet paper bows around the tree trunks.
We waited. They moved closer, closer, and closer still to our house. Then it happened.
Eric’s roll of paper lodge between the branches, and he had to climb the tree to retrieve it.
Kenny aimed the hose and delicately sprayed droplets in his direction.
“Hey, Keith, was it sposed to rain tonight?”
Eric swatted his head, waiting for Keith’s reply.
“Well, I feel rain. It’s getting harder. You mean you don’t feel that?”
“No, man. It ain’t raining over here. You must be seeing things or feeling things.”
The girls continued tying their bows and gossiping by the trees, but Keith edged closer to me. I growled, low, like a dog, and then I growled again.
“Hey, Eric, (Southern pronunciation—Urk) did you hear that?”
“That dog. I think there’s a dog.”
(We’re from the South, so dog is pronounced dawwwg around here, just like Eric is pronounced Urk. I know you’re painting a pretty good visual image here. I want you to hear it too.)
“No, man. I don’t reckon there’s a dawg around here.”
“Well, I hear a dawg.”
Eric removed himself from the tree and resumed his tossing of the rolls.
Keith edged closer. I growled a little louder. He moved closer. I almost barked.
I don’t know how Kenny and I managed to time it so perfectly, but in unison, he lept from the house, his black robe flying in the breeze, and I sprung up from the bale of straw, leaving the other two dummies behind.
We chased those pesky kids down the road, listening to them scream like banshees all the way. It would have been even funnier if they hadn’t almost run us down as they gassed their get-away car.
But we were young, foolish, and agile. We did a pretty good job of dodging them.
All right, you plotting whipper snappers. Don’t expect either of us to jump from the roof tops or to chase you down the road. We’re too old for that nonsense. Bones break. Our bodies are slow.
And if you choose to do something such as throw eggs or damage property, you will hurt my feelings. Seriously.
Truthfully, guys, don’t do that to ANYONE. It’s not funny. It’s hurtful. It’s just plain mean.
Yeah, okay. I can live with that–if you can live with the consequences.
In the words of the great poet philosopher Toby Keith, “I ain’t as good as I once was, but I’m as good once as I ever was.”
Think ninja. You won’t see me, but you’ll regret that I was there.
Hope you have a happy and SAFE October.
Come back tomorrow for the next installment of my Halloween “Horror” Stories, The Ballad of Darryl T.