Strangling the Wrong Guy

Posted: November 10, 2014 in Humor, Life
Tags:

I know, I know. My blog titles are magnificent. You’re welcome.

So it was, oh, 1972 0r 1973, sometime around there. The details are a bit fuzzy. I was a junior in imagesDB81LRLMhigh school so it had to be one of those years. Oh, and it was basketball season, so it had to be between November and March.

Anyhoo, you may have heard that I was a bit of a loose cannon back in the day, always getting into this-and-that. You know the old saying, “You are who your friends are”? Well, my friends were idiots, so there you go. We were always smacking each other on the head or punching somebody in the gut or something. I once shoved a buddy down a flight of stairs and thought it was the funniest thing I’d ever seen. And you know what? He got up laughing too, albeit rather slowly and with a pronounced limp. Bottom line, we never really worried about, you know, catastrophic injury or snapped spines or death and stuff.

On a related note, we all turned out pretty well. Our occupations now range from doctors to principals to wealthy business owners to world famous bloggers, so shut it.

But back to my story.

We were playing an away game at a school in another county, and it was during the JV game. I was playing varsity, so I had a lot of down time during the freshmen and JV games. Sure, a lot of players might have been sitting there respectfully thinking about their upcoming game, but all we usually thought about was what sort of mischief we could get into. Like I said, idiots. On a related note I know what you’re thinking, and no, I could never have played for me.

At some point during the JV game I went down to the locker room to use the bathroom. The place where we were playing had locker rooms that were down a long set of stairs, and as I started back up them I saw my friend Tom sitting on a chair at the top. He was sitting there like he owned the place, maybe even guarding the stairs or something. Tom was about 6-3, 220 at the time and strong as an ox. He also had long, curly black hair and a look that could stop a man in his tracks. I hadn’t seen him when I’d gone down, but since every woman I’ve had a relationship with since has pointed out to me at one time or another that I have the observational skills of an earthworm, this wasn’t unusual.

It was then I made what was to be a fateful decision. I would attack Tom from behind. Wait, that came out wrong. I would quietly creep up behind Tom and execute a sneak attack for the ages. I knew most of my varsity teammates were sitting directly across the court and would see me, so the setup was perfect.

Except it wasn’t.

Inspired, I crept up behind Tom and made my move. I grabbed him around the throat and started shaking his noggin like a man possessed. I swear I had a death-grip on the big guy. My goal was to inflict pain and to possibly make him pass out. Trust me, this would have been the height of humor amongst my cohorts at the time.

I shook and shook his head but it would not come off.

Anxious to see how my ambush was being received by my buddies, I looked across the gymnasium. There was Pat, Coop, Byron, J.R., Tom, Kenny and the rest all staring directly at me with startled looks of bewilderment. But why weren’t they laughing?

Wait. Did I say Tom?

Oh God.

Yep, there was Tom, sitting across the court with a bemused expression watching me attempting to choke a complete stranger into unconsciousness.

It was then I did the only reasonable thing possible in a situation such as this, and that was to stop trying to strangle a completely innocent person who happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time and who incidentally had the unfortunate luck to bear a striking resemblance to one of my friends.

But hey, I wasn’t too worried. Shoot, I’d talked myself out of worse situations. I once convinced a homeowner that I was “straightening out” his mailbox when I was in fact preparing to pilfer it for a scavenger hunt. It was then, however, that my prey broke loose, arose and loomed over me. It was the opposing school’s wrestling coach. I knew this because on his chest, right at my eye level, it said WRESTLING COACH. Yeah, in big letters like that.

He sort of grabbed me by my shirt and was preparing to give me an Atomic Elbow or something when I stammered something along the lines of, “Sorry! Wrong guy! WRONG GUY!” Lucky for me he chose not to throw me down the stairs from whence I came, and instead he just said this:

“You’d better turn right around and go back down to that locker room and stay there, boy.”  

Being the quick-witted guy that I was, I replied thusly:

“O.K.”

And then I scurried back down to that locker room and stayed there.

Shortly thereafter my teammates came down and I had to endure questions like these:

“Dude, what’s wrong with you?”

“Are you crazy, man?”

But mainly . . .

“Why were you trying to kill their wrestling coach?”

Of course, all my friends thought this was the height of humor and laughed about it for years, The story has been retold and exaggerated, and in some versions I was actually given an airplane spin, body slammed, or tossed down those stairs.

The truth though, is exactly as I told it.

Just another incident in my life in which I somehow survived unscathed. How I’m still alive remains a mystery to me.

Note: When trying to find an image to accompany a blog on The Goggle, don’t ever type “attacked from behind” into the search box. Have mercy.

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Comments
  1. edoleto says:

    “His head would not come off ” to funny!

Gimme a holler.

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