Thursday, June 09, 2005

The Boy Next Door

It's been a while since I've told a story about my past, so here's one so that I can move that gross photo down a bit. In my defense, spaceneedl did ask me to post it.

When my family lived in New York, we lived in the middle of Rochester. My parents rented a house on a street pretty close to the center of town, near a park and the reservoir. Our street was a great place, at least us kids thought so. We had block parties once in a while, and kickball games and Halloween rocked.

A new family moved into the house next door, and they only had one kid, but everybody knew he wasn't nice. That's something that's pretty easy to figure out, when you're a kid. It's almost like you can see immediately the deviance from the norm in other kids. This one just seemed wrong, even though he couldn't have been more than nine.

Anyway, I was out in the front yard playing one day. Don't remember what, not that it matters. The year was probably 1977, so I was only eight or so. I don't recollect exactly what I did, if anything, but the crazy kid got mad at me. And he overreacted. He threw a rock, and hit me in the head.

Now, my brother Brad happened to witness all of this. Brad's not exactly the aggressive type. He's a great brother, but beating people up never suited him. On this occasion, he reverted, I guess is a good word.

My brother ran over to that kid, as I ran into the house crying, and picked him up. He picked him up, held him for a second, and threw him onto the ground. I think at this point my sisters and I had gotten to the window, and my mom too, and watched this happen. My brother came into the house, and the crazy kid got up and went into his house crying.

Of course, that wasn't the end of it. Crazy kid's mom came over, all upset that my older brother (Brad's five years older than me) had picked on her little boy. Mom didn't let her in, but kept her on the porch as she enlightened crazy kid's mom about what he'd done to deserve being thrown.

Crazy kid's mom didn't agree with what my brother had done, of course, but she went away after Mom told her crazy kid had thrown a rock at a younger girl. We avoided crazy kid after that, even more than usual. They didn't stay in the neighborhood long, but while they did nobody played with him.

My head wound consisted of a large bump, which healed pretty quickly. I won't ever forget watching my brother defend me though. That part makes it a pretty good memory.


spaceneedl said...

that's what big brothers are supposed to do. it's what we instruct our son (age 7) to do for our daughter (age 4.5).

big brothers look out for little sisters. period.

having said that, we don't advocate violence. unless the kid really, really deserves it. like the boy next door.

Diva said...

My brother used to beat me up and pick on me, but he always came around and stuck up for me if someone other than himself tried to beat me up.

Kate said...

Isn't it nice that brothers get that possessive vibe, diva?