And it was the 4th grade, my parent’s separate rooms and our all-in, all hands on deck of suppression move forward try to make it to the 18th year old finish line we’re kids become adults and a parents responsibilities supposedly wanes with initial matriculation to a campus of higher learning or at the bare minimum, out of the dam crib. Incidentally it seemed it was my repression that garnered the most attention these days. My parents would never be able to have an honest conversation about their own relationship. And shortly after a kitchen Malay of the blame game, a spirited and more frequently occurring contest in which we only talked about each other, it was decided at the brink of broken glass, frustration and mountains of denial that family therapy was of immediate order.
“Thank god, we need it you people are fucking nuts! We need help.” I took one look at my flaring dad’s “edison’s” and rocketed out of the door to my basketball hoop down the street at my old elementary school that would soon close. During little league I’d forever sing in the outfield and lace loud offensive utterances whenever I was called out. “Are you fucking kidding me! Fat piece of shit can’t see.” These were no, no’s in 4th grade little league when interacting with the nine to five umpire. “You’ll learn!” My dad would later recite his epitaph as it related to my growth and his role within such seemingly impossible feat. “We’re going to clean this mouth out once and for all!” “No!” I’d scream as tragic as possible decreeing torture as the incredulous taste permeated my many buds accosted only to cherry clans, jaw breakers, pink milk and fun dip. “No! No! St, st, stop!” Whenever I could muster half a breath necessary for generating any volume which might accelerate the drama in my mother’s abandoned pupils as she watched on shaking, holding her always trusty bottle of Zanex, screaming at my father, “stop dad” and like the Cobra Kai assaulting Daniel, “he’s had enough.” My dad’s eyes in a wolves glazed blink went from pacifist who studied the classics in college to the strange Dr. Demento who’d at no costs turn away his sociopathic leaning lunatic of a son. He hated being embarrassed in public, the town he’d grown up and played little league himself in. But little-league like the class room was a stage where I was able to showcase my many talents and deficiencies. “Stop dad, he’s had enough!” My father furious, would throw me down and walk away as my embattled mother raised to my side, I’d shun her and just about everybody as anger settled it’s fit and shape my quiet time. “Get the fuck off me.” I’d shake my shaken mother a retreat to some sort of basketball court be it Nerf in my room or real outside. And as the “incidents” increased in scope, size in accordance to an unsettled home front outside of my sister, the skating star that seamlessly threw all of this off her shoulders with a shrug, stayed light mentally, it was decided we needed family therapy. “Thank god, finally.” I’d been pushing this as of late during some of our more colorful domestic meltdowns over the past month. Therapy Cont…
Pant’s (ing) 6th Grade. 6th Grade had reminded my parents the aberration outside of minor incidents not involving police that represented the 5th grade. The strong male guidance of coach Popp had dissolved into six new teachers, bells, classes, movement, boobs and yes, markets. Kids now had lunch money and I universally viewed it as mine for the taking. Separate subjects, focused electives and class elections raised the stakes for the majority kids on the path to a good college that our zip code almost guaranteed when raised under a typical roof. However these freedoms, nuances and pubescence itself brought to life the misfits with more latitude, courage in a much more dangerous way. The stakes were raised. “I’m in junior high now.” Magic said this to himself seated next to the great Kevin Nolen in study hall. It was a big deal. Traveling basketball for our Junior High was still a year away. I had a science teacher who’d taught my father. This was where grades really started to count. And I was engaged as my father got serious with me about my homework and my medication. My lowlight came following our twig report in the 6th grade. The teachers had allowed us to take a lunch outside. These were gifts. And spring given the galactic chill we annually endured was a big deal. And to be outside during lunch was a reminder of elementary school. A fun reminder of how far we’d come, a testament to the “track” we’d heard so many times it was imperative to our lives to stay on. During lunch as I was performing an old dick Nose Charlie skit to a small audience of fans not friends a popular sixth grade dropped my shorts. And everyone laughed as my face boiled in embarrassment. This only turned the knob on the raucous laughter up a bit. I scampered back into the building for my afternoon math and spotted Kim, the perpetrator of my pants pulled south. My eyes lit a glow in line with the mischievous grin that typically accompanies acts of revenge, “your mines now bitch.” And lightly tip toeing behind the culprit I quickly, quietly, used my index fingers to hook with her sweats and her panties. I dropped both. And ran out to an outburst that brought a thousand mile smile to grave my face as I strutted happily into out space sprinting down the hall way. Checking back into math, a few minutes late, and faces were flushed of laughter and only the seriousness of the still recycled water remained. E double shot me the “your fucked” look when our Edison’s clashed during my initial scan.
“To the principal’s office Carl, now get out of here, go quick now or I’ll intercom.” It had been a familiar plight this past year. The “bench” as it was called.