When I Learned the Meaning of "Retribution"
Back when I was a kid in the 70's, I remember when we would torment my older cousin Murray and his friend David Bone on the way to school.
They were teenagers, and we weren't. Wasn't that reason enough?
We'd yell at them, call them names, and throw snowballs at them in the winter. Anything to get their attention.
Sometimes they would chase us. I remember once when they caught us; they used our heads to make lifelike impressions of our faces in the snowbanks. All good fun.
I *do* remember, however, the time that teenage retribution went to the next level. And it still makes me smile fondly.
I can't recall what I had done to deserve what I got, but I'm pretty sure I did deserve it, whatever it was. Anyway, on with my story.
I was out walking around with a couple of friends, when we went to the corner store in our neighbourhood. The corner store where David Bone worked. At the time, it didn't dawn on me that this was a problem. Ah, the naivete of youth.
However, once I walked into the store, and the door slammed behind me, I started to get the idea. I look at Dave, and he's come around from behind the counter, and he's smiling at me. Kind of a "Well, what do we have here?" type of smile. The smile a wolf would give a fluffy sheep.
"Heh, heh..." says I. I turn for some support from my friends.
Oh, wait. They didn't follow me into the store. When I look behind me, I see them.
Outside the door, looking in. Laughing their asses off.
The rats sold me out. Probably for a quarter each.
The young gentleman proceeds to educate me on the pitfalls of teasing someone bigger and older (and clearly more diabolical) than oneself.
The entire sequence has faded a bit over the years, but I do quite clearly recall:
1) Being peppered with "knucklers" to maniacal laughter
2) Being swung around and around by the straps of my then-popular overalls. I wasn't a heavy kid. I caught some pretty good air. And got a pretty good wedgie too.
3) Being stuffed into the ice cream cooler with the popsicles and freezies. I didn't actually *fit*, but that didn't make the effort any less energetic.
4) Being assisted back out the door with a helpful foot to my rear end. A very LARGE and SWIFT foot, at that.
Now, let me say, he didn't "beat me up". This wasn't me being terrorized by a big kid. This was me getting taught a good lesson that I could carry with me in life. It was kind of fun, except for the painful parts.
Here are the lessons I learned:
1) Anyone with the last name of 'Bone' will eventually tire of being called any number of variations on the word "boner".
2) Always scope out a convenience store in anticipation of an ambush.
3) Your friends will sell you out for a quarter if there's a good laugh in it.
Um, that's pretty much it.
Now, in today's world, good natured beatings like this just don't happen any more. We're too politically correct for that.
But man... those were the days.