Night Fights would happen when it was too rainy to even be outside. The three of us would lock ourselves in the basement rec room where all the toys were kept and we'd put pillows in the windows and towels under the door so absolutely no light could get in. It was completely dark. 100% pitch black. Then we would grab anything that was around and throw it at each other. Lego structures, footballs, chess pieces, remote controls, Tonka trucks, hot wheels, tennis balls, metal coasters, books, basically anything that was lying around could be thrown at each other with extreme velocity. Jason and I would be between 8 and 13 and Gary was between 13 and 18 and we would just let fly. It sounds kind of sick but it was seriously so much fun. You couldn't see anything so you'd rely on your hearing. You'd hear a noise and then just start throwing anything you could find in that direction. The worst I ever got hit was in the eye with a ping pong paddle. I had a black eye for 2 weeks. Jason got a big yellow Tonka truck slammed onto his back once which we thought killed him he cried so much. Gary got hit the most because he could never stop giggling whenever he'd hit someone with something. Jason and I could usually pick him out and we'd just let him have it relentlessly. After about 15 minutes of carnage and total exhaustion we'd turn on the lights and admire our bloodied bodies. Then we'd recap the whole event and talk about who threw what and how much it all hurt and who had the best injury. Then we'd clean up, go eat, and head outside. Once we invited a friend of Gary's to a Night Fight but he only lasted about 3 minutes before he found the door, opened it, and took off to his house. He wasn't one of us. We had Night Fights for about five years but eventually the rec room was re-purposed and we lost our arena. It remains a sad day.
Traps by Lee Martin
This is an excellent personal narrative essay written by Lee Martin about his relationship with his father when he was eleven years old. His father is "old school" and whips him often with his belt, although most of it stems from his father having lost both of his hands in a farming accident. It is a complicated relationship to say the least.
Essay: 10 of 10
I really enjoyed the read. My family on my mother's side is from North Carolina and they're a little bit backwoods themselves. When I read this i thought of them. The essay had moments of both intensity and tenderness. Intensity when his father was kicking his ass and tenderness when he had to be the one to bathe his father. It's a nice piece of writing.
Teachability: 8 of 10
I could make it work as a narrative model but the student interest would wane a little bit I think. I really don't think my students could relate but I could also be 100% wrong on that.