The first clod

As I told ya’ll before, nobody knows for sure when the clod war started. The best guess puts it about 1962 or thereabouts. It took place on the western edge of “our” field near our neighborhood. We had a fort next to the road that bordered the neighborhood. The fort was made out of tumbleweeds which was taken apart by the wind on a regular basis. Tumbleweeds are called tumbleweeds for a very good reason: they tumble.  Anyway…I digress.

The particular day I refer to was an early summer morning. We had just finished reconstructing our fort and were fixin’ to go chasing rabbits (which we never caught) when Tommy saw a group of boys entering the field some two or three blocks away.

Tommy pointed them out and we decided these “invaders” did not have permission to be on our territory. This was an act of war on their part and we had to run them off one or the other.  At this point, though, we hadn’t yet figured out that clods were good for throwing and stuff like that.

Walking side by side, our group of eight approached the outlaws (there was near on eight of nine of them to twelve us). When they spotted us, they stood still in a rag tag bunch and stared at us. It was pretty clear to us that they was squared stiff of us.

Our confidence was shattered in an instant when something hit Stewie in the back and dropped him to the ground with a terrifying howl. I looked behind me, and, just as I looked to see what had happened to Stewie, I was hit not once, but twice on the back of my head. That hurt something awful until I got hit again on my shoulder! I turned in the direction where I thought whatever hit me came from and, right there in front of God and everybody (and behind us) was another bunch of boys we had not seen! We was surrounded! We had seen just a few of the boys as the rest (I’d guess near on to ten or so more) had snuck around behind us. There was no choice but to beat feet for the fort which, to our dismay, had been swept away (again) by the wind. Larry’s house was the nearest house to our field and that’s where we ran to.

When we all managed to get to Larry’s garage, we counted the wounded. Every one of us had been hit at least once and some as many as three times (me), which explains why I am bald today. All of us looked around in sadness and embarrassment until Larry quoted a famous cartoon character, “Of course you realize, this means war.”

Next week: Discovering the clod.



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