Wednesday, November 25, 2015

The Dumb Things You Do As a Child

I had a dream the other night that was more of a flashback really.

These kids were harassing my cousin Jake and me. Merciless harassing all day long. We went to one of Jake's sitters house. She was this cool 15 year old that dressed like Madonna meets LL Cool J. She told us to ride by and tell them, "We'll meet you at the crossroads."

Had no idea what it meant. In my dumb kid brain I thought it meant meet us at the train tracks to fight. Don't know why, I guess because the street crossed the train tracks and I knew people always said the other side of the tracks was the bad part of town. Still don't know how that was a threat. But Jake and I rode our bikes over to where these dumb kids were and told them we'd meet them at the crossroads.

This memory is one of those dumb things that sticks with you the rest of your life. Just embarrassing, stupid stuff you do or say as a kid. I have several of these memories.

I had an uncle that was a jerk sometimes.

I remember watching a PBS documentary, was probably 8 at the time, and they were explaining people with dark skin.

My uncle picked me up and I told him that black people and middle eastern people have dark skin because they are closer to the equator.

He laughed at me mercilessly. Made fun of me the entire car ride. I remember feeling really dumb.

It was only later that I realized I might have actually had more information than my uncle, just not all the information. I realized the documentary was probably discussing a theory of evolution where people's skin got darker over thousands of years to protect them from the harsh sun.

This same uncle, as he drove away from grandma Dobyns' house one Christmas Eve, left me with this wisdom, "Go find some yellow snow, it tastes like a snow cone." He laughed and drove away as I spent the next hour looking for yellow snow.

Luckily I did not find any.

Then there was this time when I was at Reach. We did a brain exercise where we had to describe an orange in the greatest detail we could. We had to describe how the skin felt, how the rind tasted, etc. I just remember being really hungry and not having a lunch with me that day.

Something about being an Elementary School kid at the High-school made me embarrassed to bring lunches. I would scrap together $.75 so I could buy a giant dill pickle. That's what I ate for lunch one day a week for that entire year.

Well while describing this orange, we also got to eat the orange. I was so hungry that I pulled the "What's that?" and pointed off to the side.

Not only did I pull this move, but I pulled it on a good friend of mine Paul. He looked right and I grabbed one of his nicely peeled slices of orange and ate it.

He caught me, turned me into the teacher (rightfully so), and I actually still had a slice left that I didn't see, so I had to give him that.

For some reason, that one has really stuck in my mind. It's something Paul probably hasn't thought about in 20 years, but it's going to be one of those things I probably mutter about on my deathbed when my brain isn't fully working.

Memories are weird man.