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March 2, 2005 / TildeWill


One of my least favorite moment growing up took place in the summer after fifth grade. I was in my front yard playing football with my good friend John, his brother Joe, Brad from across the street, and a few other people. Now lets keep in mind that I’ve never liked football. Let’s also keep in mind that my friendship with John was slowly deteriorating and shifting to a new friendship with his brother Joe. Why I wasn’t good friends with both of them from the start is a mystery to me.

Between downs we of course had to huddle up to devise a master plan to score a touch down. Kids being kids, the other side would always move the ball in their favor while you weren’t looking. So then you’d call safety and throw grass on the ball meaning that you couldn’t move the ball. Grass of course was not much of a deterrent, so it became spit. Then the other team would spit on the ball too, that’s how things go when you’re a kid.

So I spit, then John spit, then my some more, and then it was a fight. I knew my place then just as I know it now and I ran like a little girl, but not without a plan. I knew I’d be caught eventually because John was much more of an athlete than myself. So I summoned all the spittle I could, conjuring up the thickest of mucus from the depths of my sinuses, and I ran…

He grabbed my shirt, my favorite “Cowabunga” shirt featuring a cow dressed up like a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle, and he tore the neck. I spun around and unleashed the worlds greatest lugie towards his face. It landed and covered the entire right lens of his glasses. We shoved each other away and I ran inside. I knew right then and there that we’d never talk again. And we didn’t.

Looking back it was the dumbest thing I’ve ever lost a friend over. It was also probably the closest thing to a fist fight I’ve ever had and it was with someone I felt very close to. I think it is interesting that this single fact is true. Perhaps it is the intensity of the friendship that stays constant, and it’s root in reason and rationality are not so strong, but that is what makes that bond fun and exciting.


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