Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Story Monger

It’s one of our granddaughter’s favorite stories. She begs to hear it again and again. Her dad tells the story—over and over. It’s the tale of how Aric, our oldest son, fashioned a homemade bolo (bolas) out of two wild Florida yams and a hunk of grapevine and attempted to kill our youngest son and their cousin, Daniel, with it.

In the family lexicon, it’s called The Great Wild Yam Bolo Attack of ’93.

Our oldest son enjoyed heavy infusions of adrenalin from a young age; you know, the way some kids enjoyed pizza.

Our youngest son enjoyed pizza.

Aric liked to build tiger pits and Argentinean bolos.

Adam liked to avoid tiger pits and Argentinean bolos.

The way Adam tells it, Aric appeared out of the misty Florida fog one day, carrying a bolo he’d constructed out of two wild yams connected with a length of twisting vine. Note: Wild Florida yams are as hard as rocks and about as useful.

Also Note: No one ever discovered where Aric stumbled upon his homemade bolo making skills, except that he did.

The way Adam tells it, Aric said not a word to either one of them. He simply appeared and began to twirl the homemade bolo around and around over his head.

The way Adam tells it, they began to yell, “No! No! Don’t do it Aric. Please don’t do it.”

All they heard was the searing whir of rock hard yams slicing the humid air.

Then they began to run. Adam swears he outran Daniel, knowing that no mercy would be shown. At least that’s the way he tells it.

Racing for his life, Adam remembered looking over his shoulder to see Daniel thundering along behind him. As he watched, Aric let fly his homemade bolo. It flew true. Daniel went down in a tangle of legs, arms, dirt, humidity, and yams.

Adam knew better than to stop running. He wished Daniel safe passage to Valhalla and kept right on running.

At least that’s how Adam tells it, over and over and over again to Emma, who laughs uproariously every single time.

It’s good to have stories to tell. Good to have stories that make little girls laugh. Good to have survived long enough to be able to tell the stories to our children that eventually become our family histories.

So to Emma and all the other grandchildren, I say, “Let the stories begin.”

Linda (PAX) Zern

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