I’ll admit when I first came up with the concept of canonizing mannerisms, or at the very least activities, that I believe are universal acts of little kiddedness, aka things we all did in our youth, I only had one more thing to add, but as the week has worn on my list grew from one to two . . . maybe three, I’ll need to check my list. The point is that this Smirk series will definitely last beyond Part 2 and quite possibly up to the end of the month. So without any further ado: Remembering Your Youth Part 2.
Doing shots is a very different childhood activity than getting shots, which is something that all of us have experienced, and for many of us has left us with a deep rooted fear, befuddlement, hate, despise and intense lack of appreciation for ingesting medicine by way of a syringe and hypodermic needle. These are not the types of shots I am referring to. Although to be fare if you take the needle away, we all had much love for syringes for the following two reasons:
- They are a highly entertaining way to slowly drink a glass of water/juice. It could take me up to forty-five minutes to drink eight ounces of water depending on the size of the syringe I had my hands on . . . . Okay, I’ll admit that does sound a little odd. My dad was a shop teacher so as part of his supplies for the shop he did have access to syringes, specifically used to dye leather works and plastics. I also remember sticking the syringe to my tongue too. After squeezing all the water into my mouth I’d put the tip of the syringe on my tongue and then pull the thumb pressy bit out so that it would stick to my tongue. Then I’d let go the pushy bit and snicker as it would shoot back into the syringe due to the suction build up. Sure, my tongue might have looked like it had a case of chicken pox once I finished with my glass of water, but never for too long.
- The second reason is that they were brilliant tools for starting water fights while in the house. They only held a small amount of liquid, but it was easily concealed and you could shoot water with pinpoint accuracy giving you a definite element of surprise. The other thing was, because they didn’t hold that much water in them, you didn’t get in much trouble if you got caught shooting water in the house. On the plus side there was never that much to clean up if you got caught.
That actually reminds me of when I was in grade school. It was fifth or sixth grade and my teacher would have everyone sit quietly and work from one of our workbooks. He did this every afternoon. On one particular day as I worked I started feeling small drops of water land on me. I looked up from my book and around at my other class mates, but everyone was working away heads down and focusing on their work.
I went back to work and a few moments later I felt more little drops landing on my head and ears. I had just learned what gleeking was (which is a kind of spitting where a small jet of saliva shoots out from under your tongue and out of your mouth) and I was convinced the kid behind me was doing just that. I spun around, hissed at him to quit it while giving him the foulest look I could muster. His look of surprise was a lie, I just knew it! Nothing he could have said would have convinced me otherwise. I felt a few more drops after that, which just filled me with hate and despise for my classmate. For the next week, every time I saw him I’d flash him dirty looks and would do my best to ignore him every chance I got.
I was sure I’d spend the rest of my life hating that kid, until . . . a week later when I caught a glimpse of what really happened. It was study hour again and I, on a whim, looked up from my work to try to get some inspiration from the board, hoping the math problems we had worked as a class were still on the board to see if there were any repeats so I didn’t have to do them again, and I saw something. Actually it was more than that, I saw someone . . . my teacher. He had in his hands a small syringe full of water. He was holding it close to his chest, trying to conceal it, and in that moment he arched it and pressed the end of it as a small jet of water arched across the classroom and landed on some unsuspecting student’s head. They instantly looked up and around with hate and anger in their eyes.
I learned two very important things that day. First, hating someone is exhausting, especially at that age and I felt bad for all the time I spent hating my classmate because of the shenanigans of my teacher. The second thing I learned is that teachers are people, and some people are assholes, which only means that some teachers can be assholes, and yes, my teacher was in fact an asshole. He eventually stopped, but I think it’s because word got around that he was the one doing it. I’m sure if no one suspected him, he would have kept it up all year.
As for doing shots, I mean drinking shots as kids . . . you know the initial point of this Smirk, I do think we all did this at some point. I’m referring to anyone who in their youth got their hands on a 16 ounce bottle of juice, milk, soda, etc. There were multiple times where I’d take off the screw-top lid and then with the skill and precision of a brain surgeon, hands steady and confident, I’d pour a tiny portion of my Mountain Dew into it (the lid) without spilling a drop. Then I’d open my mouth, tilt my head back and shoot down my shot of Dew. I think I started with milk, but eventually moved on to the harder stuff. I’ll tell you what though a mini-shot of Mountain Dew will jack you up when you’re ten, or at the very least encourage you to pretend you’re jacked up, unless of course you shoot the entire bottle all by yourself. Something I do not recommend to any preteens anywhere.
Everyone I’ve talked to admits to doing these shots as a kid. I guess for me, my only questions is, what was your beverage of choice to shoot at that age?
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Copyright © 2012 Richard Timothy