When I was in first grade, I used to walk home from school with a boy on my block named Randy Grippo. Randy was an annoying kid. You know, the kind that tells grandiose lies and steals your toys. The most succinct way to describe him would be to say that he was a "little shit".
On the last day of school before Christmas break, as we arrived at the corner of our block where we would go our separate ways toward our respective houses, Randy asked me if he could come in and use our bathroom. I looked him in the eye and asked him why he needed to use our bathroom when he lived a mere ten houses down the block. But there was something pleading in his facial expression, so I said that he could come in.
My daily after school ritual was to watch Popeye at 3:00 PM on WPIX. It was my way to unwind after school and my mom allowed me to watch it before I did any homework or chores (stop laughing mom).
I sat down in front of the TV with a glass of chocolate milk and watched the cartoons. I loved Popeye and got all caught up in the complex dynamics of the love triangle between Popeye, Olive and Bluto. Before I knew it, it was 3:3o and Popeye was over and I hadn't seen or heard from Randy for the last half hour. Just as I realized this, he slunk past me sideways and ran out the front door, shouting his goodbyes as he ran. Odd behavior, but he was an odd kid, so nothing surprised me.
Fifteen minutes after Randy left, I heard a blood curdling scream coming from the bathroom. My mother was screaming, no, SHREIKING my name. When I arrived at the bathroom door, she was holding a poo covered bath rug in her hands. I looked around the bathroom and there was poo on the toilet seat, poo smears on the floor, poo on everything. It wasn't clear exactly how the poo had managed to cover so much ground, but it was very clear that Randy had a major intestinal issue going on.
- - - - - - -But wait, it gets WORSE. Yes, I said WORSE. - - - - - - - -
Cut to the next day. Christmas day. And we are all loaded up in the car, about to make the trek out to my Aunt and Uncle's house out in distant Suffolk County. The gifts were loaded in the car and the fam was all dressed up in their Christmas finery. Everything was ready to go, except the toilet. For some reason the danged thing was stopped up and wouldn't flush, despite my father's best plunging and Drano dispensing efforts.
Not content to leave a plugged toilet while we are so far away, my father felt compelled to correct the situation. So he trudged downstairs with the snake and opened up the cap to the main sewage line. He let out 10 feet of snake, then 20, and so on until he felt like he hit something in the line. Then he started to reel it in like a fish on a hook. He could feel the weight of whatever it was, tugging along on the end of the line.
At this point we had been sitting in a running car for 20 minutes. My mother turned off the car and we went back into the house and found the basement door open. Assuming that this was where my dad was, we went down to see what was holding him up. We arrived at the Laundry Room door just as my father was reeling in his catch. Then we heard a whoosh and a rush of liquid as my father got covered from head to toe in raw sewage.
Completely stunned from what had just happened, my father staggered and grabbed wildly for a towel from the dirty clothes pile to wipe the poo from his eyes. Then he inspected the offending item on the end of the snake line and called out "Size 6X Boys Fruit of the Loom." Then he shook them at me and demanded "Are these yours?". Even though I knew not to mess with him in his fragile state, I fired back a sarcastic "Yeah, I wear boys briefs every day.". Then like a collective light bulb, we all looked at each other and muttered "Randy".
Apparently my little friend had an accident and tried to flush the evidence down our toilet. Knowing that he would probably get the daylights beaten out of him, my dad didn't tell Mr. Grippo, and I never mentioned it to Randy.
How did he pay us back for our silence? He robbed our house when he was 19 and got away with it thanks to the lameness of the Nassau County Police. We weren't the only family that he robbed and it eventually caught up with him. He is currently a ward of the NY State Penal system for multiple counts of burglary and won't be out any time soon.
I told you he was a little shit.