Sunday, July 29, 2012

Hey Preacher!

Have you ever seen a five year old boy scold a preacher in the middle of a sermon? Only my brother could pull this off.

To understand this story you need to know that in Lithia Springs way back in the 1970s there were only two rather large Baptist churches in town. One Baptist church had Preacher Beaver, and we at Lithia Heights Baptist had Preacher Weaver, and Preacher Weaver, you see, was a very dynamic preacher. He liked to talk real low, and then he would burst out with a shout or two while pounding on the pulpit – to keep people from falling asleep – or at least that’s what I think..

I never really listened to the sermons while I was sitting there. Mostly I just sat there and daydreamed about what the rest of the day would be like. I didn’t really need to listen to the sermons. My mom was always content with the kids just being quiet in church, and that was fine with me. 

Both of my parents liked for us kids to be quiet. Quiet while we were playing. And most definitely quiet while we're were eating dinner. I guess this was a particular challenge because Mom and Dad were constantly telling us "Hey, we're right here. You don't have to yell." 

Now my brother, you need to understand, thought all rules, no matter who stated them, applied to everyone. And if my dad declared a no hollering rule, well, it applied everywhere, with no exceptions. 

One Sunday I was sitting on the front pew with Kent Nelson while preacher Weaver gave his usual pounding "Gotta do what I say" sermon.  

Everything seemed to be going normal for a Sunday morning including the part of the sermon where Preacher Weaver began to raise his voice.

Suddenly I heard, "HEY PREACHER!"

I turned around just  in time to see my brother standing in the church pew, head and shoulders above everyone else, with his hands cupped around his mouth like a megaphone (to make sure everyone heard) continuing his sentence "YOU DON'T HAVE TO YELL, WE'RE RIGHT HERE!"

The next thing I saw was my brother being yanked down by his legs like a giant gator had pulled him under. I swear…it took a full minute for all of his hair to fall back down onto his head. 

I spent the rest of church service conjuring up an excuse regarding why I didn’t have a brother anymore, because I was certain my mother had killed him on the spot. 

My brother, on the other hand did not understand what all the fuss was about, for he was only informing the preacher of Dads new no yelling rule. 

Well I did get to keep my brother.

Mom did not have to go to jail for killing him, and, believe it or not, Preacher Weaver did quit yelling in his sermons.

I guess he didn’t want to be verbally smacked down in front of everyone by a five year old ever again. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

The Little Brown Headed Girl

My first school was a small elementary school in Lithia Springs named Annette Winn Elementary, and my first grade teacher was a battle ax of a woman named Mrs. Harris.

Why was she a battle ax?

Mrs. Harris, you see, firmly believed in corporal punishment. Her complete logic was that corporal punishment was in the bible, and if it was in the bible you either accepted it, or you needed more of it.

It's hard for a seven year old to argue with that logic while bent over for a good backside whacking or two. For almost any infraction she would march you across the hall to Mrs. Phillips class for a paddling. If you failed to turn in your class work, yep, across the hall you would go for your paddling. Talking in class, not staying in your seat, even for something like not eating all of your lunch resulted in bending over in front of strangers to get your backside whacked. I suppose I spent an abnormally large amount of time being marched across the hall for this.

Well me being a boy, aka pre-man, I was already fascinated with girls.  And there was this pretty brown headed girl I had seen at lunch and recess that I could never muster the courage to talk to. She was oh so cute, and to a very shy first grade boy obtaining the courage to talk to her seemed monumental. So I resigned myself to staring and blushing when the Little Brown Headed Girl was around.

One day I was sitting on the playground, and when I looked up and the Little Brown Headed girl was walking toward me. I could feel the lump in my throat get bigger as she got closer.

She sat down right beside me!

I thought the lump in my throat was going suffocate me and my heart was beating faster and faster…

What to say, what to say!?!

Then as luck would have it, she started talking to me first.

"I know who you are." she said.

"Really?" I croaked past the lump in my throat.

"Yes, I see you often." she told me.

Wow, could this be happening? She knows who I am. This is good. She has been watching me too!

"Where?" was my one word response.

"You're the boy that comes across the hall to get a lot of paddlings." was her reply.


I don't know if anyone else heard the pop. The pop that was my seven year old ego being deflated all at once, but I sure heard it. But all was not lost, for after all, she did know who I was. That seemed to me like the first step. And the very next day I had to again be marched across the hall, for who knows what, but this time it was different since she knew who I was, so this time I was smiling and waving.

Like I said, now she knew who I was.

As luck would have it, Little Brown Headed girl and my sister became friends and she spent a lot of time at my house. We even went all the way from first grade through high school together.

I have other stories about her, but they will have to wait to be posted later.

Monday, July 23, 2012

The Start of Something Big

The Start of Something Big.

Okay, today is the day I finally, formally, and enthusiastically decided to voice my stories to the world. I have a few family stories I have accumulated from my childhood, raising my two sons, my many years driving down the road. Some of these stories are true down to the last letter. Some are exaggerated, but still based in fact. And others are only my opinions. I hope this blog gets to be a genuine potpourri of anecdotes and opinions. Only time will tell if I have the skill to pull this off.

Good night, and I hope the first story will be here by the weekend.