Shakespeare, Kick in the Rear

As you get older, you can suddenly start remembering strange stuff. You can’t remember what you had for breakfast, but you can start remembering strange stuff. Strange, sad stuff. So anyways, it’s my first day of school, at a new school, fourth grade, 1971. Half a century ago. It’s recess, and I’m walking through the playground by myself, a playground that looks like the Dust Bowl from the Thirties? No grass, just bare dirt? Plus some gigantic rocks, almost like the boulders Wile E. Coyote used to try dropping on the Road Runner in those cartoons on TV? Anyways, I’m walking along by myself, getting the feel of the place, when someone kicks me in the butt, a bit hard. I turn around. The kicker, a big kid I haven’t seen before, big in all directions, probably the school bully, says, he says “Shakespeare, kick in the rear!”

Well, the best I can do thinking quickly, I say, I say “Your mom eats dick.” I have no idea what that means, pathetically enough, only that it’s bad. The bully punches me in the face. I fall on the ground. I can’t resist pissing him off more. “Your dad eats dick, too,” I say. I thought I’d really get it now. Instead, the bully laughs and says “Yeah, he does. But my mom don’t. Remember that.”

“You bet,” I say.

The bully walks away. He doesn’t bother me again. A week later, he leaves school for good, for some unspecified reason. The adults, they won’t go into detail about what happened. Adults never tell kids anything. It’s rumored—well, it’s the most popular rumor—that the bully went to juvie ’cause he beat up this three-year-old boy so bad, the boy almost died. Plus the three-year-old was retarded. Adults really hate it when you beat up the retarded. So anyways, the bully disappears, and soon everyone forgets he ever existed. Including me. Until now. I Google him, with no results. Then I call myself a retard for still caring about that loser. Then I watch some Road Runner cartoons on YouTube and really feel like a retard.

Copyright © 2021 by David V. Matthews


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