Cap Guns and Candy Cigarettes

If you weren't careful you could get one right between the eyes.

What do you suppose is going through the minds of a set of young parents when they leave their offspring with a gaggle of other children being “overseen” by an absentee caretaker who seemingly can’t hear the screams of the of the small weak ones being terrorized by the lurching bully with a smoking beaker of blue liquid from his second-rate junior chemistry set?

That was a run-on rhetorical question.

It’s not as if I was really worried that the raving lunatic in a white lab coat who had us in headlocks at various times during the evening would actually make us drink the flaming Drano.

No, I was more concerned with he irresponsibility of the large groups of parents out for a night on the town while we tried to hide in the cabinets under the sink to avoid the lesser, mentally deranged version of Bill Nye the Science Guy.

We had to put up with any number of barbaric torture sessions that included running from death in the sky, more commonly known as Lawn Darts at night, and being locked in the basement screaming while he went outside and threw things at the cellar windows.

When I finally got around to rubbing my two brain cells together, it caused a neurological spark large enough to give me an idea about telling my parents of these horrible goings on and they promptly discontinued my membership in the babysitting third circle of hell.

They then  found me a docile high school nerd who liked to wax poetic about the Bay City Rollers and the original incarnation of Battlestar Galactica. This I didn’t mind so much because she let me stay up past my bedtime so we could watch new episodes together.

And yes, it’s two days before Thanksgiving so let’s just agree that I’m kind of phoning it in here even though this childhood recollection is both chilling and peculiar. I mean Lawn Darts? It’s shocking we didn’t have various body parts nailed to the ground when the adults got home.

Happy Turkey day.

Oh gosh I almost forgot! Culture Brats did a best Police songs list. Go over and willingly give your love to the fearsome threesome.

Lawn Dart photo courtesy of Gizmodo



Filed under bay city rollers rock, don't drink drano, happy thanksgiving, I hate chemistry, lawn darts at night, Mad scientist ruins evening, my parents were stupid

27 responses to “Cap Guns and Candy Cigarettes

  1. Tom G.

    Hurray! A new posting!

    I was lucky, I had siblings old enough to babysit so I never had to suffer with an actual paid babysitter. Instead, every Friday night while my parents were working Bingo, one of my lovely older sisters would have the pleasure of babysitting me.

    The oldest would always buy me Dorito’s and Pepsi, and watch Donnie & Marie with me. The younger one would tie me up, and throw me in a closet.

    • dufmanno

      I cannot believe you never had the pleasure of being dominated by any number of surly teens looking only to talk on the phone and empty the good food out of the fridge.
      Or in my case, become meat on a stick with a metal death rod embedded in one or more of your extremeties or without working internal organs due to ingestion of a chemical nightmare.
      It makes me want to come over, tie you up and throw you in a closet.

      • Tom G.

        No, I just had to live with surly teens until I turned 12. I’d have taken my chances with the babysitter, over having them living in the bedroom next to mine

        PS – Umm… hypothetically speaking, what exactly are you going to wear when you… you know… come over to tie me up?

        Just trying to complete the fantasy, er… mental picture.

  2. I was the kid that all my parents’ drinking buddies would dump their kids with when they went out. From the time I was, like, 11. It’s a miracle none of them ever died. I’m pretty sure I let them drink beer.

    • dufmanno

      Damn. Eleven?
      My oldest is eleven and she can’t even keep herself alive much less be responsible for others.
      I think I need to read a post about the pre teen wunderkind who kept droves of children going without grown ups.
      It’s like Mad Max beyond THunderdome.

  3. i was hoping the “smoking beaker of blue liquid from his second-rate junior chemistry set” was going to be some kind of tripped out bong, but alas.

    between catholic school, missing being a king-kong extra, count dracula over boo berry cereal and drinking drano, it’s a wonder you’re not among the walking thorazine addicts.

    • Tom G.

      What? She’s not on Thorazine? Who is this girls doctor anyway?

    • dufmanno

      I feel all these life experiences add to my “charm” and I’m still at a loss to this day about the ingredients of the blue death.
      All I remember is beign nestled tightly under his armpit while he laughed like a Saturday morning cartoon villan trying to pry my lips open to “test” it out.
      I heard later on he had a crush on me and that this was probably the start of his unrequited quest to hold hands and rollerskate together.
      We used to scatter like a smart bomb was dropped in the school corridor when we saw him coming.

  4. When I was little, I was a fat little girl who read all day instead of being active. Then one time we had this teenage babysitter who was fat too, and she did nothing but sit on the couch and watch tv the whole time. I vowed in my little baby head to not grow up into her.
    I mean, I’m still fat. But at least I don’t fucking babysit.

    • dufmanno

      I imagine my Battlestar Galactica loving replacement sitter was probably crushed over the cancellation of her favorite show and the disbanding of her beloved Scottish rock stars. My understanding is that she went on to work on the Large Hadron Collider and never had to babysit for losers like me again because she’s getting ready to suck the rest of the world into a black hole. Tom thinks that Godzilla might just be able to crawl out of this fissure at some point. I’m betting on the creature from Cloverfield or maybe Mothra.

  5. Ry Sal

    For the record, Bill Nye is a genius… and lawn darts? Croquet is equally if not more deadly than a skinny pin on a shuttlecock…. At least that’s how we played.

    • Tom G.

      Actually, lawn darts are one of the few weapons that seem to work against Godzilla. Unfortunately the Consumer Products Safety Commission outlawed them years ago, so I’ll be crouching in my underground bunker, and clutching a Croquet Mallet when the Haldron Collider turns the world into a Saturday Afternoon Creature Feature.

    • dufmanno

      I’ve only played croquet a few times but we had something on our side lawn my parents called “Bocci/bocci Balls”. I’m unsure if this was just something they made up since they lost the croquet mallets or if it’s a real game.All I know is that getting your fingers smashed between them hurt like hell.
      Did you hear about Real Bill Nye fainting on stage last week? I hope he’s okay.

  6. Why do I feel the need to scream, “She blinded me…with SCIENCE!”

  7. To give you a peep into my childhood, one of my babysitters is currently incarcerated for the abduction and murder of a small child. When asked her thoughts on the situation, my mother replied, “I always thought he was innocent. He just always liked the spotlight.”

    • dufmanno

      Umm. That’s scary.
      Also, why do I get the feeling that your mom and my mom were out having drinks?

      • I wish that had been her excuse. Throwing back a few with some girlfriends would have probably given her some clarity or, at very least, some edge. As it was, she was just an innocent, thinking the world was all good. It’s amazing I survived unscathed by the evil that roams in mankind.

  8. I grew up a latchkey kid. Not sure “babysitter” is a concept where I grew up…

    • dufmanno

      I was a terrible scaredy cat so I didn’t become a latch key kid until the 6th grade and even then I always misplaced the freaking key. Luckily, we were savages who kept a full sized axe behind the woodpile so I was able to bash the shit out of any number of entrance door handles reducing them to splinters and mangled metal. It was a full on Shining case scenario with my dog playing Wendy inside.

  9. I remember one baby sitter who thought it would be fun to have us all jump off the roof. Pretty sure she’s in a shallow…um something something.

    Also had a cousin who is about 10-15 years older than me who thought it was fun to squeeze both of my hands until I was on my knees in tears of agony. He’s so much fun.

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