5.02.2008

The Rest of Wally

I was dumb. Blogspot can hold Wally. I don't know what I was thinking.

Another time, I think I was three or so. It was a party, like a little dinner get together. There was this big (well to me, a skinny little three year old, it looked big) platter with all sorts of fresh vegetables on it. I started filling my plate with only…can you guess…cucumbers, yep. They were sliced so pretty and looked so delicious; better even then the tomato cherries or celery sticks. That’s all I wanted. They were pure white, with tiny seeds. When Mom saw my plateful, she told me not to be a piggy and to put some back. Being the rebellious three year old I was, I didn’t listen.
Since none other of my friends had taken that much to eat, I was left alone eating. Two pieces were all that were left when Dad rounded me and my brother up. “Time to go. Bryant, put your shoes on. Good boy. Wally…” I looked up with my mouth full of cucumbers. “Let’s go.” I struggled to swallow what I had in my mouth, and cram one last cucumber in. Now I know that I would have been better off, if I hadn’t: for it was that last cucumber that really just…ugh! It was VERY unripe! I mean very, well, maybe not that much, but bad enough. In addition to the unripe-ness, the person who was supposed to peal them and make them look all nice didn’t. Not that they didn’t look nice—that was why I took them in the first place—it was that he didn’t peal that one all the way. Do you get what I’m trying to say?? He left part of the PEAL on!!!! Do you know what cucumbers with the peal left on taste like? I’ll tell you what they taste like. They taste like POISON!!
So not only was I being rushed to the car without my shoes on, and my bigger brother poking me, but I also started choking. That dumb thing was stuck. I couldn’t swallow it, spit it out, or breathe! I tried to pull my hand out of Dad’s, but Mom grabbed my other arm to help pull me to the car. I don’t know what came over my brother at that time, but he must have thought I was on the opposing football team or something, because he rammed his shoulder into my back. I’m very glad he did because it dislodged the piece of poison in my mouth. However when he did that, the projectile went flying. SMACK into the back of Dad’s head. Oops!
He stopped mid-step. “Walton Donald Wiggleton!” I hate it when he uses my full name. Mom’s face went from pale to red. “Just because you didn’t get to play with your friends, doesn’t mean you have the right to throw your food at me.” Mom added her part, “I told you not to take that much food. It’s your fault you didn’t get to play.” I was so glad they didn’t ask me any questions, because I’m not sure I would have been able to answer. Trying to breathe, my mouth was opening and closing like a fish out of the water. The acid from the cucumber had burned my vocal cords (or so it felt) that they were now limp and dead.
Mom buckled us in our car seats, none to gently I might add. Dad drove us home with out saying a word. Bryant sat there grinning like the idiot he is. Me, I just relished the fact that oxygen could now enter my lungs uninhibited.
There must be a positive attraction from me to cucumbers, but from cucumbers to me, there is huge negative attraction. No matter what I do, they always seem to be out to get me: like the time when I was five. I had just gotten this neat little Swiss army knife. Who cares that it had only three very dull blades and a pair of unusable scissors; it was a pocket knife. I’d wanted one of those since forever. I really had this insuppressible urge to test it out on something. That was when I spied it—a beautiful hunk of wood that Dad had thrown out. I grabbed it and started whittling away.
After forty-five minutes of toiling, I was disappointed to find only scratch marks on it. In frustration, I threw it down to go inside for a cold drink. In the fridge, mom had placed this bag of cucumbers, right in plain sight. She placed them where I, a five year old boy who cannot avoid the temptation, could reach them. Drink forgotten, I grabbed the bag and ran as best I could to behind the shed. This time, forty-five minutes later, I had produced three people, a mutated dog, and a pile of mess-ups. By then, I was ready for lunch.
After a hearty lunch of sandwiches and salad with out any cucumbers (Mom had no idea what she did with whole that five-pound bag of cucumbers), Dad decided to help me fix my bike. Why, after three months of pleading, he finally gave in, I have no clue. It was the furthest thing from my mind, but when he brought it up, I could not be swayed. I eagerly followed dad out behind the shed. Rounding the corner, I ran into the back of Dad’s legs. For the briefest moment, I wondered why on earth had he stopped, but then it came to me. I took off as fast as I could.
A bit of advice, don’t try to outrun your dad when you’re only five. He snatched me up by the back of my jeans, hoisted me up into the air, and bellowed, “Walton Donald Wiggleton!” Great, my whole name, I knew what was coming next. “Gather up your mess, right now! Take them into the house and show your mother!” I knew Mom wound not be impressed with my sculpturing, but also knew that this would not be the best time to tell him that.
Following the next event, a lecture from Mom on why I’m not supposed to take the food she buys and waste it, I was sent to my room to await the coming judgment. I could hear Bryant snickering through the wall. “You’re just too stupid to try any thing you MIGHT get caught with, so shut up!” I made up my mind. “I’m five years old! I can take it like a man. I should take it like a man. I will take it like a man. I will.” I stomped my foot right as the door opened and I glimpsed the hand with the belt. Quickly I took back that promise and dove under the bed to hide like the boy I was.
True to their nature, the cucumbers struck again. I was nine, playing hide-and-seek with my brother and a few friends. I thought I had the best hiding spot ever! “No one will ever find me here.” I whispered to myself. Unfortunately for me, it was in the middle of a cucumber patch that Mom was coaxing to grow. I sat there feeling very proud of myself.
Then I noticed it—a vine, wrapping itself around my shoe. “Get off!” I whispered to it. However, tugging on it showed me that it was firmly caught. It was grabbing me! I jumped up right as several more reached out to hold me down. “Aaaahhhh!” I started kicking wildly, waving my arms. “Help me!!” My friends and brother started laughing, rolling on the ground. “Help! Help!” I yelled again.
Mom rushed out with a broom to beat off the bees or whatever it was that was attacking her child, but ended up beating her child that was attacking her vines. “Walton Donald Wiggleton!” There it was my full name again. “Get out of there right now!” What did she think I was trying to do?! As soon I felt the broom connect with my body, the vine fell limp. Strange, why— “Waaaallyyy! Look at what you did to my plants!” Look what I did? Look at what they did: my clothes were all dirty and torn; the vines looked fine to me. I tried to explain that I did nothing except protect myself, but Mom would not hear of it.
She sent my friends home and Bryant inside, while she connected the broom again and again to my backside. Her explanation was “to teach you not to go into my garden again.” I just think the cucumber vine somehow convinced her to attack me, to finish the job. But then, that’s just my opinion…
The next incident occurred when I was 12 and a senseless jerk. It all started with a simple phone call…
“Hey, Wally, guess what!” I couldn’t even imagine. “I got this really neat fireworks set for my birthday. Bring some things that you never want to see again in your life.” Not ever seeing again, that wasn’t hard. I said good-bye and looked around my room. Alright, here’s that dopey little Spiderman guy I got at McDuffy’s. What else? I looked under my bed. Here we go. I hated making those little paper shapes. Mrs. Tarp said they were easy to do! Ha! I gathered them up. Just as I was leaving the kitchen, I stopped abruptly. Cucumbers! Yes! Pay back time! I dumped the other things into a grocery bag, picked up the fattest I could find in the fridge, and headed over to Fred’s house.
Fred was in the back yard examining his ammunition. “Yo, man. Whatcha got?” I dumped out the bag. “Dude, I hated those shapes. Let’s send them up first.” He picked up the cucumber and looked at me. “Cucumbers?” His face showed his shock. “What? You did say things that I hate.” Fred dropped it, “Alright, man. Don’t sweat.”
Fred picked up a paper shape, I selected a rocket. As Fred was lighting the fuse, the cylinder accidentally caught on fire. “Watch it!” I yelled and bumped his arm. Unexpecting that, he dropped it on the pile of fireworks. “Get out of the way, Wally!” Fred jumped for cover, but I was too slow.
The pile erupted; and, while the fireworks hardly did any damage, the cucumber was hoisted up into the air. It flew vertically into my left ear, rendering me unconscious for a minute or two, or even three. When I came to, I saw a bald spot in the middle of Freddy’s yard and felt an elephant-sized ear on my head. As I was being rushed away to the hospital, I could hear Fred saying, “But, officer, that’s the truth. The squirrel did mean to do that to Wally ‘n’ me!”
My next little, major adventure occurred when I was 14 and into science experiments. I was in the kitchen, supposed to be washing dishes, but instead I was mixing “stuff.” I added a little vinegar to the blender-full of cucumber-veggie slime. “What goes with vinegar?” I wondered. “Baking soda!” I hadn’t realized I said it out loud, but since Bryant answered I must have. “Thanks, good idea.” Of course I knew that vinegar and baking soda react together; I’m not dumb, contrary to popular belief. I just didn’t know it would react so violently.
To keep them from touching, I poured the baking soda in to a balloon, tied it and dropped it into the blender. Rummaging through the cupboards produced a few more interesting ingredients. Satisfied with all I had, I put the cover on tightly, taped it even, and pressed the button. Not long after, the balloon popped and started the reaction. The tape did hold for a while; but since the blender was old and rickety, the blender did not hold. I watched the pressure build. “Cool!”
Not cool, the plastic exploded and everything in there shot out. The goop stuck to the ceiling. “Cool!”
Not cool. Gravity pulled on it and made it plop, right onto my face, covering up my nose and mouth. Great, I hadn’t even known it was that thick. I tried to cry out for help; however, I found that if air can’t get in, then voice can’t come out. I would have been able to wipe the stuff off my face, but some things I added made it harden quickly. Not cool.
Mom came into check on the queer sound, and found me near unconsciousness from lack of oxygen. Dad reached for the telephone and dialed memory one. They had needed a quicker way to get to 911. Since all the ambulance drivers had been to our house many times that year, it took them only two minutes, then I was on my way to the hospital. The nurses ushered me into “Wally’s Ward,” and I was able to breathe again in a matter of seconds.
I would so very much like to tell you that this is the end of my happenings; but, alas, it goes on for most, in fact, all, of my life. I would tell you of it, but they would only make you wonder how on earth I survived, so I’ll spare you of those wonderings.

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