Attention Wimps: Stand Tall; Help Has Arrived
This was "me" in my fourth-grade year
More Scenes of Bullies and Being Bullied
I know full-well what it’s like to be bullied.
I know full-well what it’s like to be made fun of by smarter, more-popular kids.
And I know full-well what’s it’s like to be threatened, and later beaten-up simply because my bully tormentors could do this and get by with it.
I was always the last one chosen when teams were being formed for a game of softball, baseball and football.
And laughed at because no one wanted me for their team. A justified reason if I ever heard one.
I wasn’t an instigator in school. My parents forbid me from fighting anyone at anytime for any reason.
So I “took it,” “sucked it up,” and “swallowed it” as years rolled by. The resentment and inner-hatred grew until I forgot how good a long night’s sleep felt.
Even today in 2012, I have still a lot of those dark feelings left over inside of me from those hellish years from grades four through seventh.
Can’t help it. Tried therapy and just forgetting this time in my life and I am one to tell you that this cannot be done. I do not care how much Dr. Phil preaches forgiveness and absolution to people like me. The “silent victims” of low-life bullies who made their mark in my school simply by running over me and my friends who were from the same background as me.
And wouldn’t you know it. These same people today are among my town’s most-prestigious, powerful, popular and really influential. I won’t lie. They are all living large and “having a ball.”
I sometimes catch myself in wonder if I were to just walk up to one of these “people,” who never miss sitting on the front seat of their churches on Sunday morning, and ask, “remember that time in 1965 when you laughed ‘til you cried at how my clothes, as you put it, looked like rags?”
I wonder what “Mr. and Ms. Two-faced, Sanctimonious, U.S.A.” would say. I really do wonder.
I would even give whomever (of these jerks) $50.00 if they would just tell me the truth. That’s a fair proposition, right?
I know what these “pillars of society” would say. “awww, we were just kids then. Just get over it.”
Easy for them to say. They had it all. No teachers degrading them. No trouble passing tests. And no problem getting anything they wanted when they asked the teachers I had.
But in my case, and the case of my friends if “we” spoke-up and asked for fair treatment, to the principal’s office we went.
“no place for you troublemakers in this school,” I can hear my now-deceased teachers say through cheap lipstick and even-cheaper perfume.
“We” were the troublemakers. No matter if we did anything or not. Yet, “we” were expected to be orderly, well-mannered and use for welcome mats by our “elite” (for lack of a good profanity), kids who always had the best clothes, shoes and test scores.
Some things in life, especially in a young person’s formative years, are down-right strange and illusive to reasoning. How my friends and I were bullied and pushed-around would qualify for the number one slot on the “strange things life” list.
I promise you that if you want me to, I can give you easy directions to my home and you can visit with me and listen to my stories of these well-dressed “monsters” who went around seeking “my kind” as prey.
Once, maybe three times I think, I asked, “what did I or my friends ever do to you?”
The bullies all burst into a ghoulish-laughter and said, “nothing. We are just having fun,” but they didn’t add “at your expense.”
And on the outside cusp of one of these well-bred and groomed jerks ever getting chastised by any of our teachers, the teacher, (afraid to punish the pompas “pretty boy” because the bully’s dad was on the local school board could fire this teacher), would simply say, “now Ricky, these students (my friends and I standing, dripping mud and water (on her slick hardwood floor that Ricky and his goons threw on us) say that you and your buddies threw mud and water on them? Is this story true?”
Then Ricky would pop his finger, smile at the teacher, shrug his shoulders and say, “hey, now. Do you, “Mrs. Simmons, really think that “I” or any of my mannerable-friends would do such a vulgar thing?”
“no. I do not think you would,” “Mrs. Simmons would timidly reply then tell Ricky to get back outside on the playground while “we” the innocent “mudhole victims” cleaned her floor.
To be fair, Ricky was telling a partial truth. He nor his friends “threw” any mud or water on us. They “pushed” us into the giant mudhole that stood at the edge of the playground.
This is only one mild instance in which justice was “not” blind, but leaning all the way in Ricky’s direction.
Another example of being humiliated by other scums of the earth besides Rick, but were friends with him, was when this Mrs. Rosa Simmons would ask for us to answer rather-easy math questions.
This one time, Rick and I got our hands up at the same time. “Five is the answer, Mrs. Simmons,” I said with excitement in my voice.
“awww, now, Mrs. Simmons, ‘hillbilly Ken, you know isn’t right, and I can tell you that “five,” is the correct answer,” Rick, the smart alec snapped with his eyebrows raised upward in a “told-you-so,” look on his glaring face.
I remember looking into Mrs. Simmons’ eyes, waiting for her to tell “me” that for once “I” had got one math problem correct.
Mrs. Simmons looked at Rick. Then looked at me. “Rick, you are right. “Five” is the answer. I am very proud of you,” she announced to the class.
Before I got my next breath, she said, “and as for you, Ken, I am sending a note home with you to give to your parents to make sure that you study your math a bit more closely.” My face was red with humiliation as the class laughed at my chagrin thanks to Mrs. Simmons leaning toward the more-popular Rick who never looked me in the eye for the rest of that day.
Then something happened to my fourth-grade mind. Something that I feared was ungodly and if I acted upon it, would surely seal my fate to an eternal hell when I died.
My tongue took a mind of its own. I had no control over what it was about to do. Let me tell you that this rural boy was scared out of his ragged clothing.
“Mrs. Simmons,” I said.
“yes, Ken. What is it?” she said without looking up from the papers on her desk.
“what about me?” I asked, heart pounding and blood pressure hitting the roof.
“what about you?” Mrs. Simmons said with a halfway glare on her wrinkled face.
“I was right a minute ago when I too said ‘five’ was the answer. Am I right?” I replied hoping that she would cave and allow me some portion of human dignity.
“now, Ken, if you keep this disrespect up, I will send you to see Mrs. Mixon (the school principal who went by the nickname, “dragon lady”), and you might be in for a paddling for your rude behavior,” Mrs. Simmons said very vocally to a boy (me), who had lost his care for danger and all things orderly and sensible.
“well?” I kept insisting on an answer. And by now, even Rick, the know-it-all bully was looking worried because he knew that Mrs. Simmons had a bad habit of sometimes punishing the entire class for the transgressions of one student.
“well, what, Ken?” Mrs. Simmons replied, arms crossed in a defiant stance.
“wasn’t I correct also with my answer of ‘five,’ a moment ago?” I said in a low tone.
“you had best be quiet, Ken, or I will be forced to send this note in my hand home with you to give to your parents. Understand?” Mrs. Simmons argued.
“okay, ma’am. I will be quiet, and you can send that note home with me and I will be “glad” to give it to my dad who by the way, is a close friend of Mr. Fite, who works in an office in town,” I suggested.
Time stood still. Mrs. Simmons looked like someone who had just had a bucket of cold water dashed on her in mid-February. She became overly-quiet. Passive. And hurried through the rest of the subjects we were studying on that day.
3 p.m. arrived. So did our school busses. I kept my eyes on Mrs. Simmons to see if she would actually send her note home with me to give to my dad and mom.
3:05 p.m. came. The bell rang for our dismissal for the school day. I sat in my desk and allowed the rest of the class to leave the room. Mrs. Simmons suspected that “I” was up to something--as she fumbled with test papers and other items of distraction on her desk to keep from looking at me.
I waited until it was just her and me in the classroom. I slowly walked to her desk and stood idly by while she finished scraping all of the loose papers into the big middle drawer of her desk.
Then with no choice left, she asked, “yes, Ken. What is it?”
“my note. Didn’t you say that you had a note for me to give to my parents?”
“Ken, just go to your bus and get home. I’m too busy now to talk to you and uhh, I am, uhh, sorry for the misunderstanding today,” she said in a muffled tone of voice.
I didn’t blame her. If “I” had been the one who had “played favorites,” like she did, I wouldn’t talk above a whisper either.
“okay, Mrs. Simmons. See you in the morning,” I said with a halfway smile as I scampered from her room to my bus with an inner-feeling that maybe “I” had scored one for me and other victims of bullies everywhere.
Oh, and the Mr. Fite. It was a Mr. Rankin Fite, a powerful, authority-wielding lawyer who had powerful connections in our state government and his word was law in Hamilton during that time in my childhood.
And as for my dad being as I told Mrs. Simmons, ‘close, personal friends,’ with Mr. Fite, well, I admit it. I did stretch that part somewhat. Dad did speak of Mr. Fite fondly. Once.
That “one” time that my dad paid him $25.00 to help him get a job at a plant that Mr. Fite had negotiated to come to our town.
Funny. From the next day in Mrs. Simmons’ class, I noticed that she had eased-up some on her making fun of my friends and I and this one time, actually made Rick, the know-it-all, and full-time jerk, write 100 times, “I promise to leave Thurmon alone.”
I liked that.
Thurmon was one of my rural buddies. And an often target for Rick and his gang of well-dressed, good-smelling bullies who built their lives on the backs of us “victims.”
"SURVIVAL TIPS FOR WIMPS STARTS BELOW PHOTO BELOW."
Yep. Me again. Scared of anything that moved
AND NOW, "SURVIVAL TIPS FOR WIMPS"
NEVER BE IN PUBLIC ALONE I know that this sounds "sissy," but you are no Mr. Universe or Ray Lewis of the Baltimore Ravens. You need personal-protection from bullies. I am totally-serious. Associate yourself with a group that is not afraid of bullies. Then when a bully threatens you, simply be calm and say, "okay. Do it. Beat me up. I dare you. If that will make you a better person, by all means, beat me up. Oh, and be ready for a hefty lawsuit for assault in public which these people with me, who are not afraid of you, will testify that "YOU" not only threatened me, but assaulted me and I never lifted a finger to defend myself. This is the case that juries love."
BE A FATALIST which means if a bully is going to get after you, then it will happen. Play it out in your mind by saying this . . ."Okay, I am going to work. Oh, no, a bully is waiting for me in the parking garage, and is wanting me to give him some "protection money," to watch my car. I am not doing it. But I might be beaten. So what? Let him beat me up. I will be in the hospital for days--being tended by charming nurses while the police arrest this thug for mugging and assault. Okay. I am getting out of my car now. Here he comes. I am not going to run or show any fear. That hurt! That also hurt! Huhhh? He looks confused. He grows angry and says, "fight, wimp!" I refuse. He beats me even more. I collapse to the ground, but I am only acting. The bully is frustrated. He runs away and I get to KEEP my cash and credit cards. All without any vulgar fighting.
MEMORIZE THIS "why, Mr. Bully, are you bent on beating the life out of me?" "Is it your lack of attention as a child?" "Or do you need someone to cuddle you and comfort you?" "Well, sir. I will be more than glad to do all of these things if that will help you." BY NOW THE BULLY GETS IT IN HIS MIND THAT "YOU" ARE GAY AND DOESN'T WANT HIS BULLY FRIENDS TO SEE HIM WITH YOU. TOLD YOU THIS WOULD WORK.
OR BE THE FIRST TO MAKE A MOVE and walk up to the bully and be very loud, "what's it gonna be today, $50? $100? My new suit? Hurry, I need to get to the office, Mr. Bully!" (Make sure ahead of time before you get loud with the bully, that a policeman (or woman) is walking the beat to they will hear your voice of wanting to pay for passage to your office. If the police is not near, call in sick. Nothing is worth being used for a punching bag.
WORK OUT IN SECRET and buy books and DVD's on Navy SEAL training that will make your mind and body so tough that the bullies who beat you up occasionally will be amazed at how much punishment you can take. EXAMPLE: "come on, bud! Is that all you have, a dainty kick in the gonads and a fist to my eye? I eat this stuff for lunch! Come on! Get rough with me," I promise you that the bully "should," grow tired of a one-man fight and leave. I said "should," so the better in-shape you are, the better you will be.
STAND YOUR GROUND and do not lose your temper. This is what most bullies want is for "us" weaklings, wimps and under-achievers to do. Lose our composure. Just be cool and stand there and listen to the bully's theats and always reply, "no, sir. I am not giving you one cent today," then, even in public, do this: strip-down to your briefs and show the bully you are broke. He will not stand around that long when a crowd begins to form because people, well, jerks, like him do not perform well when others are around. Bullies and their kind prey on the weak and innocent and when no one is around to stop them.
POLICE STATIONS make a great place to walk back and forth on the public sidewalk while you are on your way home from school or work. Not many bullies will approach a wimp when he or she is standing on the sidewalk, a public place, that is right in front of a police station where officers are coming in and out. Just keep walking back and forth. Soon the police will ask you what's going on and you can say, "just doing my part to NOT participate in bully activities." Sure, the cop will say, "is a bully after you?" "why don't you ask him, officer?" And look over your shoulder at your enemy looking at you. When the police officer starts toward him, I promise you that the bully will leave.
GET A BAD CASE OF THE FLU on purpose. Then if approached by a bully, be fair and say, "I must warn you before you beat me up that I have a very-contagious disease that you will catch if you get near me, so I just wanted you to know," the bully will not believe you and as soon as he or she throws the first punch, lunge at him or her and kiss them on the lips. You will have spread enough germs in that one moment to keep the bully in bed for three weeks.
OTHER THINGS WE WIMPS CAN DO TO AVOID BEATINGS:
- Run away as fast as you can, but be ready to live with the defeat in your heart.
- Yell for help and then be called a "panty waist," but at least the bully will laugh and the more he laughs, the softer his punches. Your choice.
- Lay down on the ground like an opossum. It works for them why not you?
- Start dancing around frantically. This is a sign that you are "not of this world," and what bully wants to tackle someone who is not mortal?
- Say this, "before you beat me up, allow me to do some stand-up comedy for you," now this might work if the bully is in a jovial mood, but don't be so sure. Prepare anyway with a good joke book that you can buy for little of nothing in a party favor store in your nearest mall.
- Wear a costume and fool the bully.
- Get down in a three-point stance like an offensive lineman in football and just maybe this will distract the bully long enough for you to make a clean get-away.
- Take self-defense courses at the local YMCA.
- Try your best to talk the bully out of hurting you and giving himself a criminal record.
- Stand stationary and act like a statue. The bully may be amazed at how you can turn yourself into so many things and not hurt you. But the best tip for you is, if you are over-matched and this bully is huge and muscular . . .CRY AND PLEAD FOR MERCY.
What I am trying to get across to you fellow wimps is this: "face it. Is it really worth it to you to come out on top by trying to fight your way out of trouble with a bully?"
I'd have to give you a "no" on that one.
Why do you think that the bully picks on you and I in the first place? Because we are smaller, weaker and have no fighting spirit in us. That's why.
I suggest if these tips do not work, talk with an adult if you are a child and if you are an adult, then sit down with a policeman (or woman) and go into horrid details of how "you" have made every attempt to defuse this situation that you didn't start to begin with.
It's the police force's job to "serve and protect." Even us wimps and weaklings.