||Issue No. 330||27 October 2006|
Fair Weather Friends
Interview: Cowboys and Indians
Industrial: Seven Deadly Sins
Unions: The IT Factor
Politics: Bargain Basement
Environment: An Inconvenient Hoax
Corporate: Two Sides
International: Unfair Dismissals
History: A Stitch in Time
Review: The Wind that Shakes the Barley
Little Big Man
This week the toolshed had the pleasure of bumping into an old boy from Canterbury Boys High School, who told a story of a kid he used to go to school with.
"There was this strange little bloke," the man said, as he took a sip of Reschs and gathered his memories.
"Johnny was his name. He wasn't really like the rest of us. He wore thick coke-bottle glasses; his socks were pulled up so high he had to pull his daks up even higher.
"His voice would whine with a deluded excitement when he spoke, occasionally pausing to suck in the spit that used to gather in his cheeks.
"As you can imagine, he wasn't the most popular kid in school. The rest used to get stuck into him a bit.
"It wasn't really his appearance that got the goat of so many people - he really thought he was hot shit.
"He always used to boast how well he could bowl an off-spinner, but he couldn't play cricket to save his life, embarrassing.
"I remember one time he was standing at the crease and this other kid, Muggsy, threw a beamer at him.
"It knocked him to the ground. All the other kids were laughing. Johnny groggily stood up, took one constipated look at Muggsy, and hobbled away.
"It was after then that the poor little bloke started hanging around this kid called Walker.
"Walker was a couple of years ahead of us - a real nasty peace of work. He had a head like a robber's dog, and a smell about him like the back of a fish shop on a hot afternoon.
"Walker's Daddy was some big noter but he didn't have too many friends in his form.
"He was quite solid and would go around standing over people. Sometimes, he would hit them up for a bit of coin, but mostly he'd just beat them up.
"Johnny would cheer when Walker got into a fight. Occasionally, Johnny would wander up and sink his shoe into the victim's goolies, but only when he was sure they couldn't move.
"When a teacher caught them in the act, they would come up with some gobbledegook about protecting another kid or say it was for the good of the school.
"Most of the time the teachers would shake their heads and move on, rather than having to listen to their nonsense.
"They developed quite a friendship, Walker and Johnny. For the first time, Walker had a friend, and Johnny wasn't getting beaten up.
"But I think there was more to it for John. I mean, I don't think he did it just for protection.
"I think he really enjoyed watching some of the nasty stuff Walker used to do. It was almost as if he wished he could do it himself if only he was a little bigger.
"Eventually, Johnny would go around picking on kids in lower forms, trying to be just like Walker.
"Of course, if the situation ever got too tough for him, he'd go running back to Walker for protection.
"Imagine if Johnny had gone into politics. He'd hang off the coat-tails of some world class bully. I could imagine him, in the papers, talking about how pulling out of a war would make him and his mate look weak. He'd say, getting out of a war would make the world less safe.
"Some people change, old son, but the worst of em just seem to stay the same."
|Search All Issues | Latest Issue | Previous Issues | Print Latest Issue|
© 1999-2002 Workers Online