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Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Encounters with the Furious Captain

Continuing from the Blog before.....
The captain ran up like a freight train beaming with that one bright spotlight, tearing up the rails, getting louder and louder with its boiling engine and screaming whistle and we were like a couple of unfortunate souls got in the middle of a darkened tunnel with no escape. The car was stuck and there was nothing for us to do but to succumb to the collision of this furious train. Immediately, the captain began screaming , "Everyone, Get down on the ground!!!!"
Thinking that this guy had watched to many Cops episodes, I retorted that we didn't have guns. I was the one still beside the car whose attempt at a last-minute escape proved futile. So, the light shone on me and I became the vile culprit. "WWhhh-aatt, do you think you were doing, Harrison!!!!" the captain trying to form his rage into words. "Get up here, Harrison, get up here!!! right now!!" He was standing above the ditch while I was down among the weeds beside the car in that ditch. I cannot at all express the impression of this man's anger. I have quite the temper myself, and I am aware of how rage certainly borders on the fringes of all sanity, but I had never watched it break out past this thin fringe like it did in this one man. This youth minister of all people. There was his loathsome bright light that kept shining in my eyes, and multiple shadows behind the captain. He wasn't alone. I decided that I should appease the captain seeing how he might burst a vein if I didn't do so, so I began to step up out of the ditch. Then he stepped forward and made a quick thrust with his hands torwards me. Well, I've been in a couple of fights, where people are alot less angry than he his. The notion that he was trying to swing a punch at me formed, so I dodged his quick movement by stepping down once again into the ditch. Of course, he was only trying to grab the front of my shirt collar, the kind of thing that people who want absolute control over a person do, especially when they feel angry and out of control themselves. -But how could I know this. He seemed to be laying a punch on me, so I stepped back, and the idea occurred that the way he was leaning forward in his uncontrollable fury, I could have grabbed those very hands that were extended towards me, and with the gravity advantage I had being a large step below, I could have hauled him forward, myself turning sideways and backwards, and clearly have flung him headfirst into the thick of the very weeds his precious legs were wanting to avoid. Of course, such thoughts were lightning quick and then what would I have done, but only have set off an even madder,(if such a state was possible) captain this time new and improved with grass stains all over him. Though almost a head shorter than I, the captain's arms were twice as thick as mine. And it is never good to pick a fight with someone is already nearly foaming at the mouth when all you did was a harmless prank.
So I jerked back quickly and used the car to block himself from me. I bet I looked pretty ridiculous strutting around those weeds with a pair of really tight long-john's on. I bet they looked like white leotards and I was but the male ballet performer prancing around in "The Moonlight Chase of the White Fox." Which isn't a real play but would be if ever someone wrote it. I would be that white fox and the captain would be whatever angry carnivorous creature that you can think of that devours foxes. Meanwhile, the captain with his angry entourage behind him began to yell at me calling me "the sissy that I had always been", such a phrase deeply offended me and had I not just seen how stupid and idiotic people look when extremely angry, that probably would have set me off. Maybe I thought, that I would just play it as cool as possible and then later avenge myself by writing it all down how it actually happened and displaying the captain as the complete butt of this story, as I am now doing.
He then turned to my company and pointed at Gantt to get over to the side and to sit down on the pavement. Gantt, really believing, as everyone else did, that he meant violent harm towards me refused to sit down. Now there were 3 other guys there looking very angry also who there in their muscle-shirts, (the ridiculous style that guys from Moulton, AL think look cool, for some unknown reason) and they all seemed to be expecting that something threatening was going to happen, as though one of us was going to pull a gun or something. The captain growled for me to come up and that he had some talking for us to do. Thinking that if I waited, I could get him to calm down a bit, he would be less out of his mind, I said, "Alright! Let's talk then...there's nothing stopping us. I can hear you from where you are at." Then he roared back very angrily, "Yes, we're gonna talk! We're gonna talk like MMEEENNN!!!" and with this last word, he roared as though he had just been shot in the eye by a bottlerocket or was trying out for one of the Orc roles in a Lord of the Rings movie. So the image of he and his 3 henchmen jumping me suddenly formed in my mind, due to previous situations that I've been in, for the way he thinks that men talk is with fists. Eventually realizing that delaying his enraged speech or perhaps his physical lesson only makes the man angrier and I was ready to get whatever he had in mind over with so that we could get this car out of the ditch and go home, I stepped out of the ditch again. And once again the captain lunged forward, grabbing the front of my collar and yanking me up towards him and then pulled me and pushed me up against the front bumper of his bus, that stupid vehicle that made all of this possible. With his index finger, like a steel rod, he kept pointing and jabbing into me, "You know better than that, boy!" He kept repeating. He couldn't articulate anything else for the wrath that was welling up inside him. His nose was practically touching my nose. I could feel the heat that was exuming from his face while his bald head simmered in this bright red glow. "You could have killed someone driving around like that!!" I apologized to him as calmly as I could and said that it wouldn't happen again. Then he went on in his own contrived version of possibilities, which only makes one fall deeper into one's own existing mood. He said, that he himself is not worried about getting hit by a car, but me endangering the life of his students, he would not put up with. I could have hit one of these high-schoolers (I guess if they were out playing hop-scotch in the streets that night, maybe, or if perhaps they like running out in front of speeding cars). I kept my mouth shut and used every muscle in my face to keep from smirking, as is a natural expression of mine, especially in such circumstances. Now, all of this was fairly impossible for everyone was in their cabins getting ready for bed and I assure you a car driving around at night at Camp Wiregrass is a very hard detail to not notice. Then he thought of the very rare possibility that I could have somehow hit his wife who was pregnant (who you never know might have the craving to go on midnight strolls) and with this thought, again that aura of nothing but rage took possession of him. I thought surely if I were to say one smart remark his head might explode.
He ranted on about how the sheriff was on their way, which scared me most for although I wasn't the one that drove into the ditch that's how they found me in the driver's seat in the ditch and I was the one of course that did speed around camp. All this did but fear in me because my driver's license was suspended from too many speeding tickets. I thought surely, if the sheriff was on his way, than I would shortly be on my way to the jailhouse.
Then the captain went on and on about what he would have to do to teach me a lesson. That's when Gantt walked over and began to stand up and speak. Saying that this wasn't how a christian should be handling this. The captain's henchmen bowed themselves in the background thinking that a fight was about to break. There were these two twins who look like they spent most of their days in weight rooms and had never thought a thought for themselves. Then there was this other guy, whom I recognized that I felt sort of discouraged that he was so mad and stern with rest of these guys. As the captain furiously preached on how I need to be taught a lesson. Gantt, began to defend me saying, "What, and you're going to be the one to teach him that lesson?" At which the angry man shouted back, "You WANT some, too!!!" stepping then in to Gantt's face like a maddened bull ready to gore the matador with his horns. Then Gantt began to say how all this yelling and almost manhandling wasn't going to teach me a lesson. That he knew Brian Harrison and this was going to make him want to do more. I was thinking, "Oh no, Gantt...No. Don't go there." Which the bull seemed to snort and then get all worked up again, you could see those hot wheels turning in his head. You see with people like the captain you cannot argue with them. You just have to let them have their stage time of ranting and foaming at the mouth. You act as coolly as possible not giving them any reason to be angry at you. I used sincere words when apologizing like "That I had learned my lesson. I am remorseful. Because of my stupidity our car is now stuck."
I was really getting to be worried about the car also, and I tried to make the captain realize how the state of the car upset me, that if I bring his attention to how our car was stuck in the ditch and how the girls were also upset (my sister was on the verge of tears), he may be content with that as "my lesson" and calm down and not make such a big fuss when the sheriff was to arrive.
Gantt and him began to argue about something and I slipped out over to Doogie, the one fellow out of the 4 who I thought may still have his head still screwed on his shoulders properly. I asked, "Is the sheriff really on his way?" At which he responded sternly, "Robert Holley might be calling him right now." Wow, that was a relief. Robert Holley I knew and I don't think that he would believe this to be worthy of the interruption of a sheriff. So, I just saw that the whole sheriff bit was thrown in there just to again feel in control.
Then I turned my attention to the car, and really showed my distress at the whole situation by clutching my hair and saying, "Man!! How are we to get this car out of here?" Which I made sure all 4 of the anger troop saw. For their tempers were starting to simmer down now, and if they saw the magnitude (magnitude, another word that I threw in to my apology speech) of our plight then they may have the decency to even help us get the car out of there. About that time Mary Kate comes trampling out of the forest from her hiding spot where she hid during the entire rampage. The best idea so far.
The captain had calmed down remarkably and he began to ask the girls if they really believed that he was going to hit me. They just gave him the cold shoulder. The he asked me in normal angry youth minister tone if I believed that he was going to hit me. I admitted yes. He assured me that he wasn't, that he just wanted me to feel that.
Then after a few moments words, those 4 guys left advising us to call a towtruck. Well, luckily Lauren's brother was at camp during that night. So Wess Howell arrives on the scene with this other guy name Chris and they help us out of there. Lauren's other brother, Aaron shows up on and goes and gets the tractor and before long the car is towed out of the ditch. If the right front tire had not sank in the mud then we would have hit the side of some metal siding down there and scratched the car up real bad. We were fortunate there. The car was pulled out, not a scratch noticeable. We thanked Wess, Chris, and Aaron and about 1:30 that night we were out of there.
I have several major regrets. The first, my sister had a video camera the whole time and had not taped any footage of the captain rampage. This would have been the cause of many a night of amusement with our friends. Second, that the captain had won the game. He blocked us in and had the satisfaction of catching us. We lost in our attempt at escape. He had the last laugh. I am sure that somewhere whenever he thinks back on this night, he may get a little angry still, he may feel bad about getting so mad in front of so many people, but I bet underneath it all he smiles and feels such satisfaction, that he had out-maneuvered our escape and out-foxed the fox. Such a thought is too much for me to bear.


Blogger auburn said...

WOW. what a story. I've been plenty of times to Camp Wiregrass and never have I witnessed an act like that.
You probably don't know me, but I live in Searcy. I'm Scott Valentine's daughter. I see you around campus sometimes. We did go to Westgate for church before we moved,and I'm good friends with Brittney and Mary Kate. Yeah. I enjoy your entrys alot. Their hilarious.

8:15 AM  
Blogger папа said...

Now Brian, foolishness is often laughable, however, consequences of foolishness can bring tears of sadness and actually destroy precious human life. I am afraid the Captain was correct..maybe he should have more control of his emotions, but his duty was to protect the children of the camp. Accidents happen, a child COULD have been killed, you COULD have been sentenced to 20 years in prison for manslaughter, and an entire lifetime of horrible regret with no ease from the pain. In the future, please use your
intelligence and tremendous
experience to think of the possible consequences of your actions prior to the instigation of these kinds of acts of playfulness. I am so very glad no one was hurt. Horse play is for horses.

3:45 PM  

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