Sunday, April 17, 2011
Apologies with a story.
I have been busy with painting - that never changes and thank all that is wonderfully creative it is so. My BIG piece has caused much tearing-out-of-hair but the end product seems to be working.
Anyflingingpaintaboutway, I thought to 'sugar-coat' my bad behavior that I'd tell you a story. It's called:
PLAYING WITH THE ENEMY
When I was a child growing up in the 1950's, my best friend lived two houses away from me. Marilyn was two years older than me but that seemed inconsequential to the bond we formed. I believe I spent more time at her home than at my own. I certainly looked upon her mom as mine too.
Marilyn had a younger brother, Barry, but opposite of my deep abiding affection for my own brother, Barry was viewed by both Marilyn and me as 'the enemy'. We openly disdained his presence whenever around him.
So it was completely out of character the day I 'played' with him. As I recall, Marilyn was not there and time has lost the reason why.
Barry had a power of dark persuasion in any group of children . We all knew it but it never failed that every child was enthralled by him. He could suggest the most wicked behavior and each and every one of us would blindly obey. However, he himself never participated. And, true to form, we others would then be caught by any parental authority with Barry loudly exclaiming "I told them not to!"
In retrospect it defies belief to remember how we children could all be taken in each and every time.
On the particular day I'm telling about here, Barry convinced me to spit upon a young boy who was 'different' He and his family were recent immigrants and had moved to our neighbourhood. He spoke little English and to our censorious eyes, dressed 'funny'. Oh how cruel children can be. In the world of childish 'rules' he was a target indeed.
I carried out the heinous act and, of course, was observed by the young boy's mother who promptly informed mine. Summarily I was marched over to their house and made to apologise. Oh! The horror! Fifty years have not dulled the cringing shame of that moment.
As my my mother and I passed him by, me, with my arm firmly clasped in my mother's fist and sobbing wildly, Barry called out, "I told her not to!"
The painting: 'Children's Games" by Pieter Brueghel - try to look at this painting in a close up. So incredible to see that kids have been kids, well, forever.