Sunday, March 22, 2009

flashback

I am having a bad blogging week.
Sorry.
At least tomorrow is a new day.
In the meantime, here's a story from Ye Olde Blog, originally posted February 2005:


I Will Punch You In The Face

There are many, many things about elementary school that I don't remember, and I'm told that's probably a good thing because according to reliable sources, I went through some action-packed grade-school living.

But my favourite memory of elementary has nothing to do with the dramatics that erupted my twelfth year, and everything to do with my elementary school arch-nemesis Adam.

Adam sat across from me in fifth-grade, constantly brushing the corners of my work off his desk, mocking my scribbled handwriting, and making dumb statements like, "My parents are buying a house up on the Avenues, and it's on, like, a whole acre of land."

To which I would say things like, "That is so dumb. It couldn't be a whole acre of land. The whole Avenues isn't on a whole acre of land," which I felt pretty sure about, because I lived on the Avenues; and even though I didn't know how big an acre was, I knew an acre was big, because in movies and on TV that's how farmers would measure their land. And farmers have tons of land.

And then he would say something stupid like,"Is so. It's an acre."

And I would say, "Oh, yeah? How do you know?"

And he would say, "My mom told me."

And I would say, "Your mom lied."

And he would say, "She did not! It's an acre!"

And I would say, "Yep. She lied. Your mom's a liar."

And then he'd raise his hand, and tell the teacher I was calling his mom names, and my messy homework was all over his desk, and I would have to clean out my desk and practice my handwriting, and I would be so mad that I would never tell him that when I asked my mom how much land our home was on, she told me 1/2 of an acre, and since our home was by no means the biggest home in the neighborhood, his parents could conceivably have bought a lot with a whole acre in it.

That big baby.

Anyway, one day our class was in the lunchroom for a school assembly. One of the greatest indignities in a fifth-grade life is that even though you are ELEVEN, and clearly much older and more mature than the ten-year-olds nearby, you must still sit on the hard, tiled floor for hours and hours, while people talk on and on about things you could never remember, because you were too busy wishing you were sitting in a chair, sleeping - like the teachers.

And, on this particular day, to add insult to injury, I somehow wound up sitting next to Adam. We'd already been sitting on that hard, cold floor FOREVER, waiting for all the other students to file in and sit down, when he started poking me in the back. Poke, pause. Poke, pause. Poke, pause. And when I threatened to tell the teacher, the teasing started. I was getting madder and madder and madder, and finally I lost my head. I turned to him and said, "Stop it right now!"

And he said, "No."

And I said, "If you don't stop, I'm gonna ..."

And he said, "What? Start crying and tell Mrs. Brown?"

And I said, "No. I will punch you in the face."

And he said, "Ha! will not!"

And I said, "Will too."

And he said, "Will not!"

And I said, "Will TOO!"

And he said, "Will ..."

And I did it. I really did it. I punched Adam in the face.

And there was a crack.

The biggest crack I've ever heard in my life.

Echoing through the lunchroom.

I gaped at him. He gaped at me. We stared at each other for what felt like minutes, identical looks of pure horror smeared all over our faces. Then we started crying. Hard. I was sure I'd broken his jaw. I mean, I'd heard it break. The crack heard around the world. My parents were going to KILL ME. I HAD PUNCHED A BOY, AND BROKEN HIS JAW, AND I WAS NOT A NICE PERSON ANYMORE!

After I'd gone to the office, and my mother had been sent for, and I'd cried and apologized and been tentatively forgiven (by the school, I mean), I went back to my classroom to ask my teacher if Adam was going to be alright. A more penitent, remorseful child she'd never seen than me with my tear-stained cheeks. She knelt down beside my chair, put her arm around me and assured me that I had not actually broken Adam's jaw - I'd chipped his tooth. One of his front teeth, most of it knocked away by my fist.

"That must have been a pretty hard punch, Elizabeth," she said to me reprovingly.

And all of a sudden, everything seemed okay to me. I mean, a broken jaw was one thing, but a chipped tooth? I wasn't such a bad person, after all.

When Adam came back to school the next day, we were both classroom celebrities. He showed off his severed tooth (it hurt, he said, because his nerves were exposed), and I told everyone how I'd done it. United in our spotlight, basking in our glory, we retained a glossy show of civility that lasted for the rest of the year - for the rest of elementary, really, and then Adam moved away, and I haven't seen him since.

I like to tell this story to people who don't believe me when I say, "I will punch you in the face." Don't mess, fool.

3 comments:

Chris and Laura said...

so...are you not posting on your "old" blog anymore? Please understand that I LOVE your pictures and I really don't want you to stop posting here. I look forward to seeing something new everyday, but you haven't gone to the other blog in so long....I miss it.

Amanda said...

I agree with Laura, I miss the Sassy Liz writing posts as well. And I must say, this one is an all-time favorite. I actually had a friend tell me on Friday that she found your blog through mine and wanted me to tell you that you needed to write more. She missed the humor and sarcasm.

Ashley said...

You never cease to amaze me.