Do you remember what you were doing on the 4th of July, 1976???
I remember exactly what I was doing that day!
I almost went to JAIL!!
(and then almost DIED!) (I was all of 13 at the time)
And there's more even!...
I was sitting on my front porch with my buddy Dave, and it was SNOWING to beat the band. We were lighting off firecrackers and flicking them out in
the street in front of the house (in a snowstorm). I said I would remember that day for the rest of my life. I was right. I mean, how many people
have sat in a snowstorm on the 4th of July? But then again, it was Wyoming, so there's really no such thing as a month where it can't snow. But this
wasn't the only reason I would remember that day.
Anyway, we sat there lighting off these firecrackers, commenting on the irony of a snowstorm on the 4th of July. Individual firecrackers got boring
after a while, and we had a TON of firecrackers. So, we moved on to lighting off whole packs of firecrackers. That was fun for a while. We also had
about 5 gross of bottle rockets too, so we fired those things at each other, and everything else imaginable. Still wasn't enough. Okay, let's set
off whole bricks of firecrackers. That was pretty fun. Then the cops rolled up. Someone had called the cops on two kids setting off firecrackers
(in a snowstorm) on the 4th of July!! (who would do this??) I even remember the cop's name, it was Ziegler. He had a reputation for being the
biggest dick on the police force, and he lived up to his reputation that day!
Ziegler was going to take us to jail. I don't remember what the charge was now, but it was pretty dick-ish even then. Mom intervened somehow and
managed to keep us outta' the pokey. Of course this came with a big lecture (from Mom), and we had to promise to clean up all the paper after the
snow stopped. So much for lighting off fireworks on the 4th...but it was still early (like 7am...maybe that was part of the problem, I dunno).
I guess it was around 10 o'clock or so when Dave told me about a "stash" he had in a big wash out in the desert behind our houses. He'd managed to
score about an almost full fifth of Jack Daniels (I think he raided his parent's liquor cabinet). My contribution to the party was I had a brand new
can of Skoal (neither one of us had ever chewed at this point). So we snuck out to the desert and started takin' bumps off the JD (whew...powerful
stuff to me back then!). This Jack Daniels stuff was pretty good! So we took a few more bumps. Even more fun! More bumps. Okay, now that's all
gone, let's try some of this Skoal stuff.
Wasn't really sure how much Skoal you were supposed to use...so we just decided to split the can 50-50.
Well, this day was turnin' out to be
a mighty fine 4th of July after all. I didn't have to walk anymore, I could just float above the ground! In fact, I could soar like an Eagle even!
About the last thing I really remember about the day was...I was standing on the side of the embankment of the wash, singing the National Anthem into
this pipe which was sticking out of the ground. I'm not sure what the pipe was for, but it sounded cool and I hoped no one would flush before I got
done with my song! Dave thought this was the funniest S# he'd ever seen. The second I turned around following my solo, Dave decided it would be even
funnier if he gave me a nut-shot right about then...except he misjudged his distance a little bit and drove my nuts up to about my shoulder before
they ricocheted off my collar bone! As I dropped to my knees, I sucked that half can of Skoal from my lip into my gullet and promptly swallowed it,
so I could fall over and gasp in agony.
I do remember taking one shoe off while laying curled up in the fetal position on the ground, no idea why, but it seemed like a good idea at the time
(probably looking for one of my nuts). That's about the time my entire guts decided to turn inside-out. The JD had tasted pretty good going down,
but mixed with the Skoal, it multiplied by a factor of 50x, so the volume coming back the other direction, following the ball crushing, was the
entirety of the previous week's groceries.
So yeah...I remember July 4th, 1976 pretty well actually. The full circle of life happened that day, everything from birth to wishing for death
(complete with snow, firecrackers, cops, liquor, Skoal, singin' into a pipe, getting kicked in the nuts and blowing sidewalk-pizza in between).
How's that for a memory?
edit on 7/5/2019 by Flyingclaydisk because: (no reason given)