applied history

The bus trip from ninth grade to senior high was more than just distance. It took us from princes to paupers. No longer boldly roaming the halls, we timidly crept about in awe of the juniors and seniors who were in control. Most seniors ignored us like the ants we were, but some took advantage. We heard that one senior, a big farm kid who’s beard was so thick it required him to shave over lunch to meet the no facial hair dress code was roughing up kids and taking their lunch money.

One lunch period Jimmy N and I rounded the corner to put our books away and there he was. He glowered at us, big as a house in his overalls and plaid farmer shirt. He pushed Jimmy against the hall and demanded his lunch money. Jimmy was skinny and one half the size, but he was made of spit and gristle. “Just let me put my books down”, Jimmy offered.

The burly bully shoved Jimmy toward the shelves and Jimmy methodically placed his books there. Then grabbing the four hundred page history book with both hands, Jimmy spun and whacked this Goliath on the side of the head as hard as he could. It sounded like a cannon shot and took everyone by surprise. Mouths agape, we watched the big senior deflate like a popped balloon. We left him in the hallway. He never bothered anyone again.

That was the best lesson of applied history I have ever seen.

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34 Comments on “applied history”

  1. It was all said before but I too am thinking sometimes there’s no choice other than stooping to be understood. However that was some real quick thinking on Jimmy’s part. And original 🙂

  2. Amy Reese says:

    Yay! Thanks for sharing this, Bill. He had it coming. Sometimes, fighting back might be the only thing a bully will respond to. They teach to not go that route, but…I get it when it happens .

  3. Jamie Dedes says:

    Clever! A very good spin. They all are.

  4. lol that is so cool! 😀

  5. great story and title. I like the comments. I guess he got the word. All 400 pages of them.

  6. russtowne says:

    LOL! Love the story, title, and punch line, Bill. Thank you for sharing them.
    Russ

  7. bert0001 says:

    he spoke the language of his attacker … sometimes we have to lower ourselves to be heard, 🙂

    • billgncs says:

      Hello — that’s a really good point I hadn’t considered. I often say for kids, that they can’t come where we are, we have to go to them.

      In the case of bullies, that can’t listen, or won’t listen. I think they hurt inside in a way that can’t be expressed through love.

      • bert0001 says:

        Many have never learned to express themselves. I’m still learning today. The next step is to learn to express yourself in a polite way. And there I still have to learn a lot. And the last step is to tune your expression in such a way that the listener doesn’t get upset, neither by the news, neither by the messenger, which is often not possible due to impolite listening.

  8. 🙂 A good one! Not everyone manages to find the best way to use books when it matters the most! The history book was a part of changing…history.

  9. Shannon says:

    The things I missed out on in homeschool 🙂

  10. Great title and story – I love it! Go Jimmy go!

  11. Bumba says:

    He threw the book at him!


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