Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Break your father's back

This is bizarre.  I just remembered this.

Walking home from elementary school - I was in 1st to 3rd grade?  I would step on EVERY. SINGLE. LINE. AND CRACK. in the sidewalks.

"Step on a crack, break your father's back.  Step on a line, break your mother's spine"

I used to step-hop from line to crack and repeat, over and over and over, the rhyme above and also - "please let them die in a car crash.  Please let them die in a car crash."  I remember the sidewalks had stampings from the dates they were poured (1930's or there abouts) and I remember the walnut trees and how the crows used to drop the walnuts onto the cement streets (CEMENT STREETS) to crack them open.  I remember the orange groves (that's why they called my little city 'Orange' I guess) I remember I used to try and go as slooowly as I could walking home.

I was 8 (ish) years old.

16 comments:

  1. Bwahahahaha. Not to be rude, but I sort of love the idea of you deliberately stomping on the cracks. It's chutzpah.

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  2. I was already a kickass bitch, even at 8. :)

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  3. Channel that. However makes you feel better. Fuck the assholes. :)

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  4. It's just so weird to me that even then, I knew that their death was my only option. (or my growing up, but at 8-years old, that seems impossibly long and far away.) I knew I would be taken to another family, I didn't care - anything was better than HERE (which I guess is behind the drug/alcohol, I think Upsi said that or maybe TW but SO TRUE).

    I already knew they were pieces of shit but as a kid I had no power. No help - I was fucked unless they died. This was still the 60's, like 1968/69 - teachers didn't call the authorities and hitting your kids (and wives) was still a sanctioned sporting event.

    These memories are bubbling up more clearly now - as the great philosopher Shrek says, 'better out than in!"

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  5. if that crack thing worked I'd go out there right now and step on one. : )

    Q's Sis

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  6. Hi Gladys,
    I had my own version of this, I used to fantasize about being an orphan; either the singing red-headed version or even one of the starving, mistreated children in Oliver Twist. I didn't spend a lot of time focused on how the Nparents would die, exactly, but I spent a heck of a lot of time in the dream that I would someday, miraculously, be given to strangers for them to raise me.

    Interestingly, I'm remembering now that I held onto this dram well into my teen years; the only change was that I began to feel terribly, horribly guilty about it.

    Love,
    Vanci

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    1. LOL,
      Fucking Freudian slips.
      I held onto this DREAM.
      And then I picked up a DRAM.
      LOL.
      Love,
      Vanci

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    2. Dreaming of Drams... lol. I saw the musical 'Oliver' when I was little and I wanted to be a street urchin... I can relate.

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  7. Hi Gladys!

    I only discovered your blog today! Can I add it to the links on mine (The ACoN Society)? Please let me know. :-)

    (I was the opposite - I was worried sick my NM's back would break, and I'd be blamed for it!). I'm thinking I'd rather have your outlook on life as an 8 year old, now!

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    1. quercus, I would love to be a link on your page! Thank you for reading.

      LOL - it never even occured to me that I would take care of them. Even now, my mother is 80, and it will not be ME who cares for her as she ages. I will just throw money at the problem.

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    2. Well, we have come to the same conclusion then, regardless of where we started from! I too am already planning on chucking money in the direction of my siblings/my parent's caretakers when the time comes! I intend to live as far away as humanly possible! ;-)

      Thanks! Will update the link page! :-)

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  8. I was also wondering by the time I was 8 if I was adopted-and hoping it was true! I just did not "fit in" with Psychob or Nsis AT ALL. So I spent as much time as possible from dawn to dark away from the house, outside. I was a great little "wanderer"/"explorer." My father-who is NOT "handy" by any means-spent an entire day making a large "enclosure" for me in back of the house. He put me in it and I managed to get out within 3 min. He wasn't inhumane, just afraid I'd wander off somewhere because that's what I did and Psychob wasn't exactly "attentive" to where I was a good deal of the time, much to my relief. I didn't get in trouble-well, not too much, but I was typically kid-fearless.
    Ex: We lived down the road from the residence of the Russian Embassy (it was one of the old Pratt or Morgan Estates.) This was during the height of the Cold War and I knew what "DPL" License Plates meant because they drove by the house all the time. BUT, I couldn't see IN the vehicles and I wondered what Russians looked like. First I tried to "catch" one by putting a couple of glass bottles in the road while I sat there and waited. Sure enough, a car came along, hit those bottles and the glass flew-so did I. It wasn't a Russian, but Dad ended up having to buy the guy 4 new tires. Since THAT didn't "work" my next "expedition" was to the Estate itself on a "Recon Mission." There were huge, decorative iron gates in front and no way to climb them, so...I climbed the rock wall that surrounded the place-lots of good toe-holds there and started towards the house. Suddenly all these men in military uniforms and rifles came charging out and yelling incomprehensible stuff just as I was getting a look at the house. I turned tail and ran, scrambled over the rock wall a whole lot quicker than I made it over the first time and took off down the road only to be "caught" by the local Police...and driven home. Again. Psychob was furious. Again.
    Hence, Dad's "Enclosure" endeavor. My sister was "Miss Priss" and screamed if she wasn't dressed in a dress and spent most of the time in front of the TV (until Dad got a lock for the thing.) I hated those scratchy dress things, was a true little out-door dirt-bag. I didn't "fit in" and I wasn't a "Little Lady" nor was I at all interested in being one. (Still not.)
    Maybe we were switched at birth?
    TW

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  9. OH MY GOD 'Outdoor Dirtbag' <--ME ME ME!! We lived less than 15' from railroad tracks - I used to just follow the tracks down to the the riverbed, walk through the mile long enclosed sewer drainage ditches (we made twisted newspaper torches for that, NOT DANGEROUS AT ALL), explore peoples backyards (bigger backyards then, no fences sometimes, lots of rabbit hutches and avocado trees) - We used to pile shit like bigwheels and trashcans on the railroad tracks trying to get the train to jump the tracks! (didn't really think THAT one thru, lol).

    I was NEVER clean unless/untill there was an opera or some damned EVENT (thanksgiving, etc). Nobody paid attention to where I went. I was like Ponce De Leone every Saturday. The riverbed cut through to a HUGE park. You could go for MILES without hitting a road. I found horses to pet and made aquaintance with the odd homeowner and ate oranges off the trees. Exploring an orange grove is a trip. I was such a loner, even at 2nd grade.

    I AM SO LUCKY I didn't meet with any nefarious action, I was in and out of bushes and backyards and sewers and train trestle bridges. It was fucking AWESOME in a lot of ways. Because they couldn't stand the sight of me, I was free to run wild. They had NO IDEA how many miles I covered!!

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    1. For about a year I lived right backed up to a train track like that. In sixth grade. It's funny how you can get used to and sleep right through something that sounds like a tornado bearing down on you.

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  10. Aye, aren't these the greatest memories of being a kid? My backyard was well pruned and gardened as a child and beyond that was The Sound.
    There are three things that will immediately bring me "Back There":
    The sight of a bank of fog moving in.
    The sound of a Fog Horn.
    The smell of salt water.
    TW

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  11. PS: I rode horses for years and participated in Shows, riding English. People paid Dad for me to ride their horses by the time I was 9. My greatest ambition was to be a Jockey as we had a string of race horses, but females weren't even Out-Riders at that time. It wasn't "Acceptable." I broke my arm playing Dodge Ball with the boys at 12 in 8th grade (Catholic School, no respite there) and ended up with one of those old nasty plaster casts so I couldn't continue Piano Lessons.
    Psychob decided since I couldn't practice piano I couldn't ride. Slit my throat and kill me, I lived to ride.
    But I did manage despite her and she about shit when I showed at Madison Square Garden. With the cast. And won 2 Blues, a Red and a Yellow.
    Thanks, Dad. At least I had ONE "Normal Parent" even if he wasn't around much.
    TW

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