Beware of Babysitters

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The stories were many, odd, and would usually lead to a morning after which made us want to retreat to a small, narrow space and hold ourselves to keep from crying.

The evil old woman in charge of babysitting would start like this: she would pull off a long piece of black duct tape, throw it on the wall and then tell us to describe what the piece looked like, and tell a story about it. If the tales were not scary enough, she would begin to tell a story of her own.

When she determined we were sufficiently frightened, we were shut in our bedrooms for the night.

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MLMM Sunday Writing Prompt 11-29-20

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Jimmy and Joe selected their best pairs of Converse for the contest. Their moms preferred snow boots when they went outside to play, but ten and eleven year olds wanted to look cool. The old dirt road was packed down pretty well and no visible ruts were seen. The sun reflected off the icy road and the boys pulled their ball caps down tight.

It was never a choice as to who laid on the top and who steered the sled. Jimmy was the oldest and larger, so naturally he laid on the wood and Joe was laying on top. Joe would be the lookout for anything like a rock or a rut that might slow them down, and cars.

The contest was between the Jones boys and their neighbors, two bullies they had known since the age of three, Mike and Millard Moses. Plagued by these two, Jimmy and Joe were determined this contest would be their ticket to “bully freedom”–at least that was the prize. If they won, the Moses boys promised to leave them alone till the end of the school year. Sisters of the competing contestants were on opposite sides of the road, sitting in piles caused by a snowplow that morning. Christmas vacation in Vermont was the best time for endless sledding and snow in their rural area.

The oldest sister in the audience yelled the word, “Go”, and the boys leaped onto their sleds. They were neck and neck until midway down the first rise, a car appeared to be coming up their hill.

Joe yelled “car” and Jimmy swerved to the right, missing the oncoming vehicle, but the Moses boys ended up in the left hand snow bank. Therefore the Jones boys won the contest. It was a small victory considering their teacher, Mr. Meeny, who was driving the car, reported the boys’ activities to their parents.

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