That's right, it's another Memoir Monday, in which I take you for a ride along the not so straight and narrow road that is my past.
This story takes place when I was around 12 years old. It's the time in a young mans life where the hormones are going crazy. The most talked about hormones are usually the sexual ones. The ones we're dealing with today are the killing ones. Don't tell me you didn't have these. I know I'm not the only one. I'd been primed by at least a year or two of playing Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat behind my mothers back, and I had them. So did you.
I had a couple of really good friends when I was younger, and we did everything together. The one we're gonna talk about today was named Postage. I actually gave him that nickname in high school, because it went with his last name. He hated it, and gave me the nickname, "Slut." (slut sounds like Sloat...kind of) I guess he thought that was an insult, but I gotta tell ya, it gave me kind of a good rep. I enjoyed it.
Anyway, Postage had a BB gun. I did not. Nor was I allowed one, because, lets face it, I would have shot my eye out. Also, I had 3 little brothers at that point that might have gotten a hold on it, and shot their eye out. My parents were very careful with that sort of thing. So I loved going to his house because he had this BB gun.
This gun was OLD. Like, maybe it was from the 70's or something. Old. It was the old school style, where you pulled the lever, it jacked a BB in, and you pulled the trigger. No safety. Safeties are for pansies. The barrel on the gun was shaped kind of like a C. Not as rounded, but you could definitely see the C tendencies. It was not the most accurate gun in the world. In fact, you never hit anything you were aiming at unless you had the barrel touching it. Even then, it was spotty.
It was a bright sunny day, and I had the BB Gun. I honestly don't know where Postage was, but I don't remember him being there. He had animals to take care of, and some chores occasionally, so it's likely he was doing that. I was walking around a field when a tweeting sound caught my ear. My primal senses were instantly activated, and I started stalking my prey. Turns out, I didn't have to stalk far, because it was right above me on a power line.
It was a blue bird. Tiny little thing, but boy it had a set of lungs. Tweeting it's little heart out, just happy to be alive. Just living life. Not knowing that it had been destined to have one HELL of a bad day.
I very carefully shouldered my gun, so as not to scare it. I took aim through the sights, and tried to make some sort of rudimentary calculation to adjust for the curvature of the barrel. I had a BB chambered, so I took a deep breath, and shaking like a leaf from nervousness, I fired.
I had at this point in my life never killed anything. Nothing. I mean, the occasional spider, or maybe a fly or two. Nothing larger. I was not prepared for what happened.
The blue birds sweet sweet song was replaced by tweets of anger, pain, and what I'm sure was the equivalent of bird cursing. It fell off the power line, and landed on the ground, hopping and fluttering around and giving me the business. You see, somehow, I had hit this bird. Somehow. I still don't know how I did it, but I did. Now, I was using a BB Gun. It's not really known for it's stopping and/or killing power. The reason the bird was not dead, and instead was hopping around rather pissed off on the ground was because I had put a hole in its wing.
I didn't know what to do. So it was here that I made my first quality of life decision. I thought, well, the bird won't really be able to do anything with a holey wing, and what kind of life is that for a bird? So I decided to kill it. (I won't lie, I still really wanted to kill something) So I corralled it up, put the gun barrel to it, and pulled the trigger again. POP! TWEET TWEET TWEET TWEET TWEEEEEET! Woo. It didn't die. One more time. POP! TWEET TWEET TWEET TWEET! POP! TWEET TWEET TWEET TWEET! Finally, I put the gun to its little birdy head and pulled the trigger. Executioner style. POP!
TWEET TWEEET TWEET TWEET!
This bird would NOT die. At this point, I was crying so hard I could barely see the damn thing, much less shoot at it. I was so sorry I had shot it, and to be honest I was contemplating running away from this demon blue bird. I gave it one more go though, because I knew I needed to finish what I started.
Silence. Stillness. Death.
The only noise in the clearing was my pathetic little killer self, just sobbing away. I wound up finding a stick or something, and digging a hole in the field, and burying the little bugger. I swore on that little birds grave that I would never again kill another animal. This oath lasted about 10 minutes, because I distinctly remember on the walk back shooting at a vulture circling in the sky. To this day, I still have no idea how on earth I hit that bird, I only know that it was the worst 15 minutes of my life in which I've held a gun.
On a related note, I'm going to go deer hunting this year. By the time I get done, one HAS to wonder, will there be any usable meat left on the poor thing that is unlucky enough to have me shooting at it?
(Don't forget, you still have until Wednesday to submit questions for Meet The Missus! Go HERE to leave a question. So far, I've had 3 people submit questions, and we need more than that! Go!)
Monday, September 28, 2009
I'm a husband, father, son, brother, and friend. I teach English and Literature to the youth of today. I love Jesus and my mother, and I'll gladly introduce you to both. I love photography and writing. Duke basketball keeps me occupied for half the year, and hating Chapel Hill keeps me busy the other half. As you can tell from the title of my blog, I like stories. I'm a big guy with a big voice, trying desperately to be heard by someone before The Lord takes me home. Let's be best friends.