May 05, 2005

Flight of the Cousin

I was reading this post over at Harvey's, where Harvey takes a jab at _Jon. _Jon came back with this:

"When you were a kid, did you smack hornet nests with a short stick?"

I noticed that it sounds as if he thinks this were a bad thing... but it did bring back some thoughts of days of old. My brother, The Perfect One, and I used to do that all the time. Don't know for sure how it got started, but we used to go armed with sticks, or small boards, and beat the bejeezus out whatever hornets we could find.

I've mentioned that we lived on a farm growing up. There were plenty o' places for hornets to make their nests. One of the preferred spots was the framework of feed wagons. We used to beat on the framework until they started swarming out, and then knock them out of the air with the sticks. As soon as they hit the ground, we stomped on them. Sometimes, the stomp was unneccesary... if you hit them right, they would make a snapping pop, and, Voila, guts of hornet!

Perhaps my fondest memory of this is the time that my cousin from town came out to visit us. Now, it's not like they hardly ever came out... we grew up with them. And it's not as if he didn't know that we liked to do things a little differently... he had been at the table the time that one of us asked for someone to pass the milk, and one of us (my siblings will tell you it was me, but they lie) fired off a beautiful pass with the brand new gallon of milk. It ended up shooting through outstretched hands and splattering on the floor. Not smart. Funny, but definitely not smart. Someone got their ass beat up over their ears for that one. But I'm wandering.

Anyway, my cousin went out to the barnyard with my brother and me. He had heard that we were in the hornet beating proffession, but he hadn't a clue that he was along on one of our "jobs." And of course, it slipped our minds to tell him.

He was right behind us as we picked up our favorite boards and wandered over to a green chop wagon. (Green chop is just corn chopped up while it's still green. You cut just enough to feed the cattle for the day. The stuff is kinda sweet, so these wagons seemed to really draw the hornets.) While he watched in horror, we started beating on the framework. Didn't take long, and we were being swarmed.

One thing that I forgot to mention; his mother is deathly afraid of bees or hornets. She has passed this along. Heheh.

At first, he just stood there not moving. Smart, I guess. The hornets only seemed to be going after The Perfect One and myself. Then he let out a strangled shriek, and started swinging at them... bare handed. Now, he did manage to knock a few down, but the boy was in a panic and therefore forgot to stomp on them. So now the little bastards were really getting pissed!

I don't believe that he got stung, and I can't remember that The Perfect One got nailed, but I know I got it once. As soon as I yelled and started my nervous laughing, Cuz was gone. I mean, teleportation type gone! There one second screaming, nowhere to be seen the next. Very quick kid, my cousin.

We were aged 9-10 at the time. I think he's still a little scarred by growing up with us... whenever we mention that we should try something because it looks like fun, or we think up stupid things to do, he will have no part of it. Hell, it's not like we would really do it. We're older and wiser... kinda.

Anyway _Jon, you really missed out if you never smacked hornet nests with a short stick. Good times...good times.

Posted by That 1 Guy at May 5, 2005 07:03 AM | TrackBack