Monday, February 7, 2011


Have you heard about the fourteen-year-old honor student in Virginia who was caught red-handed and charged with criminal assault -- for shooting spitwads?  No kidding. It happened this past December.  Apparently, the powers-that-be at this child's school are recommending  felony charges against him for possessing a deadly weapon. Ummm.... Huh?  A deadly weapon?  We're talking about tiny bits of styrofoam blown through the emptied-out barrel of a ball point pen here.  Stupid.  Childish.  But not deadly.

When I was a fourth-grader I threw a concrete block on the foot of a boy who got too close to me playing tag.  Having been caught red-handed by the Sister on playground duty, I was sent to sit outside the principal's office for the rest of recess that day and got a stern -- but distracted -- lecture from the secretary sitting behind the desk -- who, after I'd sat there about a half hour asked me what on earth I wanted.  I told her my crime.  But what I wanted was to not be sitting there in ignomy.  What I wanted was to sink into the orange plastic of my chair and disappear so that everyone passing by wouldn't look at me so suspiciously.  And what I really wanted was for my Mom not to find out I'd gotten into so much trouble I'd had to sit outside the principal's office. It was a disgrace and I knew that I would be grounded forever if she heard about it.
  But my Mom didn't find out. In fact, I believe the playground Sister forgot to mention the concrete block incident to my teacher, because I sat there outside the principal's office for what seemed an eternity, kicking my feet, and looking guilty -- a forgotten criminal in exile.  It wasn't until the middle of science class, the last subject of the day, that my teacher finally noticed I was missing and sent a hall monitor out to find me.
And go figure.  The monitor was the kid whose foot I'd dropped the concrete block on.  But, by the time he came and got me, I  don't think he had a clue why I was sitting outside the principal's office.  He didn't say a word or even make a face at me,  just crooked his finger and pointed down the hall toward my classroom. Where I high-tailed it, gratefully.
I was a pipsqueak nine-year-old with a curly mop of hair hanging in my face; he was a linebacker disguised as a fifth grade Catholic grade school student.  (It seems I recall he even had a hint of a mustache...)  But I deserved the punishment I got, and it was more than sufficient.  I can honestly say that from that day to this, I have never purposely dropped anything on anyone's foot -- especially around teaching Sisters.

  But, seriously...  though I  really should not have dropped that concrete block on that boy's foot, I expect the playground Sister saw what was going on, and knew that what I did was...

                     And childish.
                                But not deadly.

And no charges were pressed.

Thank goodness.

Common sense still reigned.

When did we lose that?

Question:  Have you ever shot a spitwad?  Homeschoolers can answer this one, too...


Kim @ Starry Sky Ranch said...

amen! Love this story Lisa.

GrandmaK said...

Ya know of all the "weapons" this silly boy could have used this seems the most benign. I thought that was what boys did with a straw and paper. It certainly wasn't bright but those who are smart are seldom bright~ It's like the part with common sense in it is over-ridden by "too much smarts!" At any rate I hope this is just a publicity stunt, if ya know what I mean! Have a grand day! Cathy

Aubrey said...

Seriously!? Good grief, there are so many worse things, especially from an honors student! I'll roll my eyes and hope that the powers-that-be at our children's Catholic high school will have more common sense. *sigh*

Linda Higgins said...

oh my goodness, my brothers use to blow spit wads through straws!, yeah they might put a welt on you and were yucky and I could get them in trouble if they did it to me but deadly???? come on........pretty sad system I think....AHHHH maybe they thought his spit and germs would be deadly???

Bia said...

really? you dropped a concrete block on someone's foot? YOU???!!!

seriously, it's a good story:)