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Saturday, November 17, 2012

CARRYING A GRUDGE


CARRYING A GRUDGE
 

I do not do a lot of things well, but one thing I am extraordinary at is carrying a grudge.  I do not forget shit, and I will find a way to right a wrong.  I submit to you the case of Larry Graham*.

My sophomore year of high school students from the town’s two Jr. Highs merged together for the first time.  I spent my ninth grade at Edison Jr. High, the blue collar side of town.  The other school was Roosevelt Jr. High from the rich snotty side of town. 

Most of the kids knew some of the kids from the other Jr. Highs.  I had only moved to Westfield, N.J. the year before and I was still the new kid with students from my freshman year.

The very first day of my sophomore year I was in a home room of all Roosevelt kids.  The designated wise guy in the room was Larry Graham.  That first day, Larry was charming the teacher and entertaining the whole class with his braggadocio and clever retorts.  Everyone in the room was enamored with his wit; everyone but me.  I did not think he was funny at all, as a matter of fact I thought he was a complete asshole.  While the entire class including the teacher was laughing at his antics, I stared straight ahead and pretty much ignored him.

Larry did not like that I was not admiring his charm.

At some point the teacher calmed everyone down and began to call roll.  When my name was called I responded “here,” and then it happened…Larry Fricking Graham yelled out much to the amusement of the entire class, “Look, IT talks!”

IT TALKS?  IT?  Really Larry, you skinny-ass mother friggin douche bag whom I could have crushed in about sixteen seconds…IT TALKS?

I never responded to Larry Graham.  I don’t even remember him for the rest of the year or for the rest of my high school years for that matter.  I know I never got to know many of the Roosevelt kids, I know Larry remained a little shit with a big mouth. I think he might have been on the Swim Team.  I was Captain of the Football Team (I’m just saying!)

I never forgot “Look, IT talks!”

Years later, Frog (a Roosevelt kid) mentioned the name Larry Graham.  It was like the old Abbot and Costello routine:

“LARRY GRAHAM? Slowly I turned, step by step, inch by inch…”

“Jowles, Jowles (my nick name…long story) snap out of it!”

Frog brought me back to my senses before I broke something.

Two years ago I again heard the name Larry Graham.  I got hold of an email he sent to members of the schools 45th reunion.  I had not attended; I hate reunions and make it a point to never attend.  In the email Larry sounded like the same old asshole I remembered from that first day in home room my sophomore year.

Armed with Larry’s email address, I contacted him.  I told him about the IT comment and how I always hated him because of it.  I told him I thought he was an asshole and a little shit then and from what I read in his email he had not changed very much.

Larry responded.  He said he realizes sometimes his mouth gets out of control.  He apologized and admitted that he must have hurt me very badly for me to remember his comment over 45 years later.  He suggested we stay in touch and even become friends.

I responded back, “Larry, don’t despair you really did not hurt me; I just always wanted to tell you that I thought you were an asshole.  I appreciate your apology, but I cannot accept it.  Fuck you, you fucking asshole!”
 
 
Larry tried a follow up response, but it was summarily deleted.

Can I carry a grudge or what?

*Not his real last name which sounded much like Mary Tyler Moore’s boss. 

11 comments:

  1. Yikes! If I don't leave any comments here for a while it is because I now have a gigantic fear of offending you. :)

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  2. Glad my names' not Larry.
    I do think that we carry the baggage of school with us forever though, so I am not surprised you haven't forgotten this dweeb......

    If you see him again ask him if he got rid of the goggles? (The dick goggles that is!)

    Have a great day Cranky :-)

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  3. Aw, come on Cranky. I've heard Reverend Graham turned out to be a pretty nice guy. No, wait...that was his brother. You're right. LARRY turned out to be a pedophile.

    S

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  4. I remember those days fondly. Not the days in your school, because, well, I didn't go there, or you would have known it, wink wink. I wish I were as brave as you.

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  5. Joe--It's nice to encounter another person who has raising holding a grudge into a fine art.

    Most stuff is not worth holding onto. However, there are few grudges I still have festering...

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  6. You remind me of my son-in-law, the KING of holding grudges. I once asked him if he was going to hate a particular person until he died. He said, "No. Until I die, & then 3 more months!"

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  7. Ummmm. . . wow. . .

    Not sure that's somethin' I'd wanna be all that proud of. . .

    Just, you know, speakin' on my own behalf. . .

    I'd sorta like to think that I've grown up a bit since 10th grade, and maybe I'm less of an asshole than I was then, and I'd hate to think that one of my classmates has hated me ever since, over some bit of youthful smartassery. But what do I know?

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  8. I don't understand why they don't hand out medals for grudge-keeping at the Olympics. They have medals for everything else.

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  9. You must have some Irish in your blood somewhere. We have a saying when someone acts as you have: "He has Irish Alzheimers; He forgets everything but a grudge."

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  10. Wow. That's one serious grudge.

    Interesting how you went out of your way to keep his email and write to him and yet when he wanted to seriously apologise, you slammed him.

    Whether he apologised to you or not, I reckon Larry didn't have a chance.

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  11. You are so proud of that story, and a good one at that.

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