Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Almost 4th of July Firework Mishap (part II)

Dad said yes we are interested and asked Ned Beatty’s worst nightmare what he had for sale. “Hell, I got shit that would take down a small nation” replied mutton chops to the delight of the second trucker who resembled Don Knotts if he wore a cowboy hat and had both arms covered with bad black ink tattoos. He guffawed loudly through the open real estate in his face where teeth once resided.

As the door lifted we got a full view of this arsenal on eighteen wheels. “I got ½ sticks. ¼ sticks of dynamite, I got M-80, M-100, M-200, I got Roman candles and Greek candles, I got cherry bombs and apple bombs, I got enough firecrackers to line a trail from here to Savannah and back again!!.

Our once comfortable station wagon was now cramped with enough explosive material to bring down The Vet while it was it still in its prime. My brother and I had stacks of both M80s and ¼ sticks under our legs in the back seat. Dad looked back at us and smiled with the newly lit Lucky Strike dangling from lips. “You ladies gotta use the bathroom to change your pads or anything” he laughingly asked us. I didn’t know about my brother but I didn’t need to take a pit stop because I already practically shit my pants having WWIII between my knees. My brother was sweaty, ashen faced, motionless, and apparently unable to reply, but mom wanted to stretch her legs, so we pulled over.

My hunger soon replaced my fear as I thought about the Arby’s Double R Bar burger I was about to scarf down on our brief stop. With the combination of a grumbling stomach and the thought of being a castrated 9 year old I couldn’t exit the shitwagaon fast enough. As I hopped out I noticed my chain smoking father light another Lucky Strike from the depleted one he just finished.

My brother not only sprang to life, but sprinted like Carl Lewis toward the Arby’s bathroom. Dad was quickly dismissing mom’s concerns about the safety of traveling with munitions. “Only idiots who don’t know what they are doing get hurt” he said. “It’s the morons you read about every year who lose body parts, I’m no moron and I ain’t about to lose any body parts”. Mom in all her gullibility seemed satisfied with Dad’s idiotic justification and put her head on my dad’s shoulder as they laughed their way toward the restaurant.

With full bellies my brother and I talked about how cool we’d look to the kids in the neighborhood with our new 4th of July toys. Just think about the fire power we are going to display in just two short days? It was just then we heard the loudest explosion ever, followed by the second loudest ever, then the third loudest ever..


The passenger door flew in the air like a tossed crushed aluminum can, windows shattered with quick and violent pop after pop. Stream after stream of multiple colors took to the sky followed by louder popping. My Mickey Mouse ears were on fire, luggage burned like logs in a fireplace. After what seemed like forever with the explosions and popping sound, a black smoldering mountain was all that was left our car.

After questioning and interrogation by multiple law enforcement agencies it was determined that hell at the rest stop was caused by I’m no moron’s still lit cigarette. He of course quickly tried to blame mom who hadn’t had a cigarette in six months, then asked if me or my brother (9 and 11 at the time) were smokers.

After the arrest and the fines, we were driven to the airport by the South Carolina State Police and told in so many words to “never to show our Yankee asses in my state again’. The flight home was not too bad with not having any luggage to check in and all. To add irony to insult, the movie on the flight home was called “Fire” starring Ernest Borgnine and Patty Duke. When dad saw the opening credits he asked the flight attendant to keep the Scotch on the rocks coming fast.

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