Thursday, April 07, 2005

The Dumbest Thing I've Ever Done?

Way back in high school, I lived a few doors down from this marching band tweedle named Herman. Herman played the clarinet. Rack his stones for being such an honest goddamn fag in those days of mulletized beatdowns if you so much as hummed a bit of the Thompson Twins. Herman was also pretty heavy into radio-controlled planes. Naturally, Herman was a friendless, spineless, post-pubescent pimple on the ass of the world. He always said "Hey" to me, even though the last time we had really exchanged any words was when I drilled him in the head with a rock and knocked him off his older sister's bike. I'm not proud of that now, but, as cool as I was then, well I have a reputation to maintain, which luckily included 'geek radar.' I suppose, looking back on it now, that Herman knew of this technology and the "hey" was his attempt to neutralize my attack.

So, it's fall. Herman gets a new radio-controlled plane. It's fucking HUGE - like a goddamn condor or some shit. More fuel to the fire. So he's taxiing it around the second parking lot of our apartments one day, and a friend who shall remain nameless (okay, Joey) and I decide to get in on the action. Why not? We know we can, and he can't do a damn thing about it. Posing as would-be friend, we hang out with Herman (who seems pretty psyched - he was probably making a mental note to run out and get new "best friends" wristbands), and learn all about his stupid fucking planes. Hell , he even lets us fly his new big one (what a sucker) once he gets it in the air. Fucking thing has a fully-operational bomb chute and about a six feet wingspan.

That Friday, I ask Herman if Joey and I can tool around with his new plane. He's pretty leery about giving up control of his dork crown, and asks why we aren't going to the football game. I tell him that I have to watch my younger bro at home since my Mom is out looking for dick, and since he (big Herm) has to go march at the halftime show, I thought I could practice up on his remote control thingie. Hell, maybe we could hang out over the weekend and fly his stupid fucking planes like...together? This was the cherry on top - the temptation of actually having friends was just too great. Well, this brings a smile to Herm's seeping, zit-addled face. "You betcha, fellas!" So Herm gives us another quick lesson in the parking lot before he heads down to school to put on his band costume.

We get in Joey's Camaro, cruise to the store, and buy some balloons and a two liter bottle of Coke. One at a time, we snap balloons onto the lip of the Coke bottle, and tip it up to fill 'em with Coke before we knot the fuckers. We make about eight little cola bombs, then take the wings off the plane, load the whole shebang into the Camaro, and cruise down to field. Turns out the "bomb chute" is so fucking small that it only holds one cola bomb at a time. At halftime, we load her up and take off from the soccer fields across the street. Our band takes the field and we start walking across the street and up the hill behind the bleachers, flying the stupid fucking plane overhead in big-ass circles. I'm doing the flying, and Joey's carrying a few spare cola bombs (such a good helper, that Joey). Right in the middle of Whitney Houston's version of the Greatest Love of All, I circle the plane over the football field, intending to bring it in low over the clarinet section. Not surprisingly, people start shitting (some literally, some figuratively), what with the plane and the high-pitched wwhhhheeeeeeeeeeeeee. A few teachers notice Joey and I at the top of the hill, and start heading our way through the bleachers. No time to lose. The time is now! I divebomb that fucker right over the woodwinds, heading towards Big Herm, and drop my payload, baby.

But, heartbreakingly, I miss him ... completely. I do, however, nail another clarinetist named Janice with an 8 oz. cola bomb. It explodes right onto her shoulder in a caramel halo of Coke droplets and mist that was truly breathtaking under the lights of the football field. (Janice would forever hate me, but I would fuck her sister the next year, so it made up for the bitch's ill humor.) The band stops butchering an already horrible fucking tune, starts freaking and looking around, and lovely little Janice starts crying. Meanwhile, Mr. Darnell, a PE teacher, is getting dangerously close to exiting the bleachers and reaching Joey. Ever the gallant combatant, Joey lobs a few cola bombs in Mr. Darnell's direction. Unfortunately, they are wide of the mark, exploding instead onto the heads and shoulders of nearby spectators.

At this point, we wisely decide to exit the field. I drop the radio-controller on the ground, and turn to catch up with Joey on our flight to the Camaro. Big Herm's Enola Gay touches down into the side of the Weiner Shed, the portable concession panel truck. We made it to the Camaro, but I ended up with a week's free pass on Monday. Herm got the nerve to ask about his stupid fucking plane the next weekend, and I told him it was an accident.

Ah, the innocence of youth.

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