Yes, I Was A Stupid Boy

I don’t claim to represent all males so you can breathe a sigh of relief,  but here’s a quick story about just how stupid boys can be.

I was about twelve and swallowed books whole. I loved sports and sports stories and read a biography of the football great Johnny Unitas. I fascinated me to learn that this great quarterback was blind in one eye. How can he be that good and blind in one eye?

There’s a story that goes along with this: he and his pals, when they were kids, found a stash of 22 caliber bullets. One of the crew – the smart one, I’m sure – found a board with a long split. The boys wedged a bullet down into the crack and propped the board up with the rear-end of the bullet facing them. Gathering up handfuls of rocks, they began pelting the bullet and board until they heard the pop! of the small shell. While the other boys yelled for joy, Johnny fell to the ground in pain. Who knows what happened, but the bullet’s head was likely caught in the wood, and the explosion pushed the shell backward, and it hit Johnny’s eye. The damage was permanent, and it’s a testament to his skill that he was able to play sports at such a high level with only one seeing eyeball.

Fast forward twenty years to me and Terry and Alfred and Rocky rummaging around who knows where when we stumbled upon a cache of 22 shells. I don’t know how old we were, but I remembered the Unitas story. “Hey, guys. I know what we should do with these.” And I told the whole story. We all looked at each other and thought this is the most fabulous idea we’ve ever heard. Bullet in wood. Rocks at bullet. Bullet blinds boy for good. What could be more fun?

We found the right piece of wood and set up the target but never got a bullet to fire. Duds! What a crappy day! No explosion and no one was blinded!

So, if you ever wonder about boys being stupid – here’s one vote on the Yes side.


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