There was a time (just the one of many, you understand) when I thought that my bestest pal in all the world was just plum crazy – I mean crazeee (you hear what I’m sayin’ ?) I know I kid and josh and tell you that he’s one wheel short of a full set, but most of the time he makes me laugh so hard that I pee myself. I kid you not.
But there was a time, must have been two summers ago when he just went to the edge and then tumbled off the end of that edge. Me and him were sittin’ by the Old Tawny Creek trying to smoke some dried macaroni – yeh, I know, but we didn’t have any way to get cigarettes and we thought smokin’ even macaroni would make as look like men. Anyhoo, as usual you’ve got me goin’ here and there and I’ve lost the track of this story.
Where was I? Oh yeh…so Buzz manages to get his macaroni to light and he’s coughin’ and splutterin’ when he just turns to me and says:
“I’m tellin’ you right here and now best bud, but I think I might be a vampire.”
That’s the way he said it just like that, matter of fact. As if it was the most natural thing in the world to say. So I hesitate for a minute or two and then start laughin’ until the tears run down my face and my side is hurtin’ so bad that I plead Buzz to stop talkin’.
“You ain’t takin’ me serious, are you?” He says next and by this time I’m laughin’ so hard I think I’m gonna be sick.
Then he tells me that he keeps wakin’ in the middle in the night and when he sees the moon he feels like howlin’.
“I just get overcome and feel like howlin’ at the moon.”
I go real serious for a moment and Buzz looks at me with that face of his, all screwed up and stupid. And then I scream and laugh so hard that he gets up and walks off.
“I thought you’d have flown off,” I shout after him but he wasn’t listenin’.
Buzz never stays mad at me for long, or me with him. But I didn’t hear from him the next day or the day after that, and it’s only when Buzz’ Ma comes knockin’ at the door that I find out why.
He’s been hangin’ upside down in the town’s tower and won’t come down. I mean, I thought exactly what you’d think, that Buzz had paid his Ma to tell me that story but no, it was the truth. He was hangin’ upside down and wouldn’t come down till I went to talk to him.
“We only found him this mornin’, when the pastor tried to ring the bell and all he heard was a clunk and Buzz sayin’ a real bad cussin’ word.”
Yep, you guessed it, I nearly pee’d my pants right there and then.
So I go up to the tower and sure enough there is Buzz hangin’ upside down and with a big bruise on his face where he’d been hit by the town bell.
His face was so red and full of blood that he looked as if he might explode. I bit my lip so hard, I thought I would draw blood too. It’s hard not to laugh when your bestest pal is hanging upside down in a tower.
I asked what he was waiting for and he said that during the next full moon he would become a vampire, good and proper. I asked, as you would, when the next full moon was and Buzz thought it might be right after the Sunday School picnic.
“You’re gonna miss the picnic cause you’re waitin’ for the full moon?”
“What about normal school?” I ask him.
“Vampires don’t need schoolin’”
I wasn’t sure if he was being serious or not, so I did a real good hand stand and yep, he looked as if he was tellin’ the truth.
“Ain’t you hungry?”
This time I knew he was lyin’. So I start describin’ the burger and fries I had eaten that mornin’ and how the cheese melted all the way down.
Well this gets Buzz riled an’ all and he starts to swing back and forward and then he shouts ‘can’t hear you’, and he swings so hard that he starts the bell swingin’ and ringin’ and I fall over and stand up. Lookin’ over the edge I see all the townsfolk comin’ out to see what the emergency is. Old Harry the baker, who must be 200 years old starts shoutin’ that the Russians are comin’ and that we should all run for cover.
How I didn’t pee my pants right there and then I can only put down to the fact that I had my legs crossed. Everyone in the town was going crazy except me, so that’s when I slipped down my pants and showed my butt to the townsfolk.
Now let’s be serious here, you would have thought that was the least of their troubles – what with Harry shoutin’ about the Ruskies and Vampire Boy bangin’ off the bell with his head but no, I was the one who got into trouble for being a bad influence. Apparently all that happened that day was the fault of my butt.
It took a few weeks for the townsfolk to forget it, well all except the Mayor’s wife who kept winking at me every time we met.
Buzz went right through his vampire phase and out the other end. However, when he had troubles and he wanted to think, you would find him up at the tower hanging upside down to clear his mind, he said.
Just plain crazy if you ask me but hey, he’s my friend.
bobby stevenson 2017