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Three score and ten or more

Thursday, October 20, 2005

FLYING

FLYING
                                                           Richard B. Johnson                                                              

As a child, I had very active imagination.  I used to dream a very vivid dream. (actually, I still do once in awhile) That if I stood a certain way, and held my arms just right, and concentrated, I could levitate - - that’s right, just fly up in the air.  It was so real that I came to believe that I could really do it.  This had dangerous potential.    

Otis Randall, who was in my primary class at church, was bigger and faster than me and he was in the OTHER third grade class at school which made him a rival in every way (our classes were like that).

At recess one day, Otis was sitting beside the building with a GIRL.  They were actually holding hands.  For some reason this irritated me, and since I happened to be hold a paper cup full of water, I casually strolled past Otis and his friend, “tripped” and dumped the water on the two of them.  Of course I apologized, (with a small smirk) but Otis wasn’t fooled, and saying a couple of words that would have scandalized our primary teacher, he reached for me.

Being no fool, I took off running, (a salutary activity in such a situation but futile since I could never outrun ANYBODY).  Glancing behind me, I was surprised to see the girl hot on my trail as well, and somewhere as she crossed the playground, she appeared to have acquired a softball bat.  Things began to look bleak.

As they chased me, I suppose they were surprised when I stopped short, got into flying position and just stood there with an intense look of concentration on my face.  I was certainly surprised to remain bound to the ground n the face of their onslaught.  Otis came to a stop abruptly, as did the girl, and instead of hitting me (I think he was carrying something hard and threatening to hit me with, as well), he got this thoughtful look on his face and just, kind of, poked me with his finger.

“What’s wrong?” says he
“What’s going on?”  says the girl.
Otis: “I think he’s having some sort of a fit, or something”

Knowing what was good for me, I didn’t even blink, and tried not to breathe visibly, letting my breath in and out with great care, so as not to move, and just stood there in “flight” position and waited (still hoping to begin vertical motion).

“Is he Okay ?”
“Maybe we ought to call the principal?”

When the principal was mentioned, I knew I had little time to spare. I did not see Mr. Spriggs, our principal, often, but those experiences I did have tended to be unfriendly, if not acrimonious in nature.  I stood there, frozen, a few moments longer as they discussed my situation, then I twitched, suddenly blinked my eyes, and muttering “Wha, wha, what happened” staggered over to a nearby fence and slumped against it.
Otis, and “whatsername” rushed to me and supported me.

“Is everything okay”?
“Are you sick or something?”
“What’s the matter” Should we take you to the school nurse, or to the principal, or what?”

“I don’t, I don’t remember anything.  I was walking by the school with a cup of water, then suddenly here I am, off the school grounds, clear over here.  I don’t understand.”

“OH! Geez!” said Otis, “We’re gonna get caught off the school grounds during recess.” And with the other two helping me walk we went back onto the school grounds for the remainder of recess.
Whatsername scrounged up some tissues and wet them in the water fountain to hold against my forehead.

I instantly made three or four mental notes: One, I couldn’t really fly, at least not on a moment’s notice, or not near the school ground, or something like that.  Two, being helped across the school ground with your arm across the shoulders of a girl is a vaguely pleasant sensation.  Three, this was not the kind of thing I would want to happen again, or I would really get a weird reputation around the school. Four, sometimes I am a really lucky son of a gun.

2 Comments:

At 10:25 PM, Blogger Super Hip GMa said...

This story gave me quite a laugh. I really enjoyed it as it made me think of my brother and some of the things he did while in school. I'm surprised he has made it to the ripe old age of 61

 
At 8:13 AM, Blogger Saur♥Kraut said...

Marvellous! I still have those dreams, and I love them. What fun!

 

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