The Bonfire – 66

My freshman year we had a bonfire competition for homecoming. Everyone would start at 8:00 AM on Saturday. Teams from each class would have all day to find, collect, and stack burnable items by the football field. At 5:00 PM the stacking ends. The class with the tallest stack wins!

By the way, I DID have the thought that this was a brilliant civic activity. Once a year, you get dozens of high school kids to BEG for your burnable refuse – the more the better. The town gets a through cleaning – the kids get to have a wonderful bonfire – everyone wins!

I went with a crew that had a stake bed truck and a location of stacks of lumber we could have. My older brother ended up in the same truck. It was a beautiful stack of real lumber – old and used – but still lumber. It was fast and easy to toss into the truck and it stacked well.

I noticed when I tossed my piece of wood into the truck that one board had gotten skewed and was preventing the rest of the lumber from stacking straight – if it wasn’t corrected quickly the whole load might become unstable. I hopped over the side of the truck, checking to make sure no one was throwing anything first, and straightened the board. Everything fell into place nicely. I take a look towards the back of the truck to make sure I am safe to move to the side and WHAM! A 2×4 hits me right in the face, end on. It knocks me down and splits my cheek open. I scramble over the railing and drop to the ground.

The board had just missed my eye but opened a cut in my cheek just under my eye. My day was over. I was able to witness the bonfire later. I have no idea who won (which means WE didn’t – lol)

But there is another twist. I SAW who threw that 2×4 AS he threw it. Our eyes locked just as the board left his hand. My older brother didn’t MEAN to hit me in the face with a 2×4, but he DID, and he caught hell for it. Made me ALMOST feel bad for him. lol

The BATTLES my older brother and I had could fill its own thread, but THIS wasn’t one of them. Just one of them things. Like the time he broke my nose our senior year, hehehehe, and me breaking his leg before the year was over. Weird stuff just happens. . .

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