Monday, July 03, 2006

do kids go to hell for things like this?

el paso
mid 1970's
faris and i crouching at the end of the hall
waiting for our parent's reading light to shut off
!bing!
it's off
and so are we
crawling through the living room
our mission underway
must get to the escape hatch
a front bedroom window
low to the ground
easy to climb out of
plans to go visit our cute little neighbor sheri price
did she even know we existed?
no matter
it was summertime fun for a couple of bored barely teenage boys
i would run reconnaissance
faris would huddle behind dad's lazy boy chair
keeping watch
but just as i plop my right leg out the window i hear
"what's goin on???"
bellowed in semi-broken english
there's nowhere to run
nowhere to hide
i dive backward and scramble to get as close to faris as possible
before the lights come on
we're busted
not quite red handed
but busted
nonetheless dad is not happy
but too groggy to fully interrogate us on the spot
we'll get grilled well and good come dinnertime tomorrow
"get to bed now!"
oh what terrible punishment surely lay ahead of us
as we had no good answers to explain our mischief
very little sleep that night
over and over trying to think of what to do next morning
off to jeff georges' house while dad is at work
we'd better come up with something good before dinner time
that's when he gets home
the clock is ticking
so up stonebluff with some huffing and puffing
to jeff's two story house at the top of the hill
red headed kid with a bowl cut answers the door
thank god he's home
"we need your help! now! something, anything you have lying around the house"
we tear up his room
nothing but records and girlie mags
neither will do at all
then upstairs to the junk/toy room
rummaging boxes
making a mess
until we finally find something that just might work...

at the Nourallah house later on
5 o'clock has rolled around
we're ready for the dreaded interrogation
sure enough it comes
"so what were you boys up to behind the lazy boy last night?"
dad's slow deep voice
"we were trying to find wrapping paper"
"why? for what?" accent kicking
"for this..."
gingerly presenting a small wrapped gift
"this is to say thank you for letting us go to arkansas this summer"
we happened to be leaving for the grandparent's house in a few days
my dad hated 'em
we had to beg to get to go
i interject "mom keeps the wrapping paper in the cabinets behind the lazy boy -
that's what we were looking for"
now bewildered dad slowly unwraps his gift
what could it be?
how strangely thoughtful of his two eldest sons
to get him something special
oh here it comes
what is it?????
a plain white slightly dingy obviously used alarm clock
dad is speechless

3 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Where were you in 1978?"

...crouching behind the Lazee Boy, like all kids in search of fun!

Lisa, who got up to quite a few things in her day too...

10:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello S, this experience of exploring youth...and considering it in regard to the ultimate penance...and this may just be semantics...being young, exploring life, a time of innocence, and when something you did doesn't result in causing you or others harm...I am certainly not one to judge...I feel that unless it has led you to a life of greater mischief, becoming a pathological liar, or worse yet...purchasing your own lazy boy chair...which I don't think any of these scenarios apply...than you should be safe...you Nourallah brother's...so talented, clever, and with hearts that have been chipped away at, but still have a solid core...and gentle spirits that survived...even after getting to know your brother and not really knowing you very well, I still believe this to be true. I realize there are certainly differences...just like many siblings have...different experiences as kids and adults...how we perceive them, and how we deal or not deal with them. You and your brother have different lives and a vast degree of how you face life or deal with reality. I think everyone has similiar stories from their youth...especially ones that glean fond memories that no matter what happens throughout your life...(memories which tend to be more positive as time passes)...a person we once knew or an experience that somehow we are able to hold onto. Sometimes the good ones get weighed down with the negative and affect our perspective...You could write a book...and so you have through song. It is amazing how families survive, how individuals persevere (or not) with secrets, fostered by mixed up and/or damaged people (a.k.a. parents)...and not knowing any other way to handle or approach life. In the end, perhaps parents really do the very best they can with what they have. I really don't know...I think having a child and becoming a parent is a gift (well until a child reaches the age of 11 or 12. :)

The real hell is learning to grow beyond life's painful experiences, guilt, and not continue behaviors or react in ways that permeate unhealthy patterns which cause others harm. Hold onto those fond memories...do whatever you have to keep them alive, warm your heart and keep your spirit alive...Like writing them down in this blog or a journal. I know you and your brother have been through so much together and seperately...and like you once said at one of your performances before you sang one of his songs, 'I hope there is a happy ending. I have had this hope since the first time I read your story in 'The Observer' and will always have this hope for both of you...I am a sucker for many things...love, happy endings and the fighting for the "underdog"...these have always been at the top of my list. My apologies for the most verbose response evah! Thanks for sharing this memory from your youth...ahhh...the things it reminded me of in my past.

I interpret your story as the normal mischievous (mostly boy) :) childhood behavior, most clever, and achieving a result that outwitted your dad...whoa! Little G may give his pop a few challenges some years from now...exploring life like all kids do, and praying (or should it be preying) on the ailing memory of their parents...how lucky he is to be surrounded by love and a pop who probably has many other tales of youthful mischief to share (when the time is right...of course). :)

Thanks again for starting and continuing this blog. I may even consider one myself...I could probably benefit from writing...it can be theraputic and the public forum can be beneficial in so many ways...sharing what ever is going on, no matter what, you discover you are never really alone...best wishes as always to you and your family. Hope Jayme is following the docs orders...they do not tolerate incompliance...and certainly not proponents of long term patient relationships. :) in consideration of the patients best interest of course!!!!!

L

1:42 AM  
Anonymous Hopper said...

Made me laugh out loud - a nice compliment to my coffee on a Saturday morning...

7:21 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home