There are Bulls and There are Bullies

My father was a pacifist and I have the soul of a lover.  I was never afraid for my life or limb, but physical violence creeps me out. I have given up playing ‘war games’ simply because it takes no time for blood and gore and death to be part of the fun. The moment my father received his ‘re-classification’ for the draft, he stood in front of our bathroom mirror and wept.  I caught a peek and was embarrassed for him, then.  Now, I realize it was not in fear that he shed those tears, it was the thought of taking another life. A gentle spirit and loving nature is the ‘natural’ man of GOD.  James warned us of the destruction of anger and hatred.  As the younger brother of My LORD JESUS CHRIST,  James detested his perfect sibling. It must have rankled the whole family when Jesus refused to respond to taunts in retaliation and you know this was something HE would endure. I never chased bulls, but I was hounded by bullies from elementary to high school. I hated the filth of used sports equipment and stinky feet.  I fought nausea in the locker room and can’t stand smelly feet today. For two years in my college choir,  I stood on risers beside a very overweight singer who never bathed. In 1949
Texas, high school boys of size were expected to play sports. I was musically inclined, therefore unworthy to be considered team meat. I did ‘go out’ for football in the eighth grade but after catching a pass and being ‘piled on’ by stinky, sweaty bodies, with my face into the dirt, I realized I was claustrophobic, big time. Once the beef was removed from my bruised but unbroken body, I went immediately to turn in my helmet, shoes and pads. I went into the smelly locker room, took a shower and reported to the band hall. I enjoyed Friday night dances with a pretty little girlfriend of my buddies on my arm while my buddies hobbled around on crutches. I sang “My Buddy” at half-time during a game played around Armistice Day and was chased home on my bike by a gang of local hoodlums. I was attacked during Boy Scout meetings with the ‘other’ pack from across the tracks and had my pants removed on the high school stage. With hot tears of “Just Wait”, I got even with all of those turkeybuzzards, one at a time, during lunch by donning gloves and beating the snot out of the whole bunch, one at a time. It was at that moment that my gentle nature was overcome by the thrill of beating the tar out of a bully. My boxing experience served to cease all attempts at ‘bullying” by anyone, ever. I did run the 440 in track, but was no threat to anyone. I couldn’t dribble a basketball without a fumble and even though I had great hands, I simply didn’t want to expel the effort to improve. Just a notch above “slobobvious”, I read and write. I was good at playing a cornet and earned a full scholarship to East Texas Baptist in Marshall. I transferred to Sam Houston State in Huntsville as a Sophomore and graduated with a Bachelor of Music degree in 1953. When the college band folded for lack of leadership, I was given membership in the ‘exclusive’ ETBC Choir of Seniors and Graduates. That’s another story, donchaknow, Really. Having led a charmed life, I wouldn’t change any of it, but I might have worked a bit harder in school. My one regret is that I failed to give GOD credit for all HE has done for me. That has changed, big time. That’s what I get from My Box of Chocolates.  AMEN

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