Vengeance is Best Served Warm

Charlton Haupt
Charlton Haupt is a Husband and Father who really loves to hear and tell a good story!

Feb 07,2017

Warm weather and sunny skies makes the heart leap as the outside beckons you to come join in nature’s song of fun and play. Whether you are 90 years old in a nursing home or, in this case eight years old and out of school on summer break, the perfect weather of a North-West Summer is irresistible. Everything in you wants to be outside! To the eight year old, it is filled with everything good. Everything from the sound of the ice cream truck, to blood filled scrapes as you go for the best blackberries at the top of the bush (which are totally worth the pain) to frogs and ponds, fishing and rafting, dirt and water, forests and tree houses, and lastly, siblings/friends….with which of course comes mischief, and with mischief comes enemies. Now mischief sounds like it is all bad, and granted, it does tend to live up to its definition, but to the one who does it, well there is plenty of justification. Especially if, let’s say, the enemy starts it for no good reason. Or at least no good reason you can remember 24 years later.

One of my best memories growing up was that of building a tree-fort with my Dad and brother in the woods that neighbored the apartment building where we lived. We worked so hard on it. It stood about 12 feet off the ground and had a triangular shape as it used three trees to support its base. The climb was a tough one, which was good because my sister couldn’t come up whenever she wanted to…that is, until she figured out a way and thus, forced her way into the club and made the tree fort more “homey” by adding a single bath mat. This bachelor pad of ours was pretty big too; we had three stories, if you include the roof, and a look out post. It was nestled just off the trail so we could see people pass by beneath, and it was embedded into the trees in order to keep it pretty well hidden.

One beautiful summer morning we were climbing up to the tree fort, and I looked up just before we got to the fort only to see a site of horror. I was struck with confusion, as I couldn’t quite register the reality of what I was looking at. After the initial confusion came an overwhelming sense of anger. Why would this happen? How could this happen? It couldn’t happen by accident. “A HOLE! A HOLE IN THE FLOOR! A HOLE IN TH FLOOR OF OUR TREE HOUSE” The hole was big enough for one of us to fall through, and someone used the bath mat to cover it up! They not only put a hole in the floor but they covered it up with hopes that someone would fall through. The guilty party was obvious. Two big kids had just moved to the neighborhood and they had previously had a spat with one of us about something, apparently something not worth remembering. Now I don’t care what it was, but it definitely wasn’t worth trying to kill someone over.  The deliberate wrongness of it all was too much for my eight year old brain to comprehend. How can we get justice for such an act? So there we were, my brother, sister, and I with a hole to fix in the tree house and wrong done to us without knowing how to resolve it. You see, the two new kids were a lot bigger than us. The younger one was at least two years older and six inches taller than me, while his older brother towered further. We didn’t stand a chance to pick a fight. This was a bully move, and we were completely outmatched. Also, since they had just moved there, they didn’t have anything we knew of that we could ruin in turn to settle the score. What we did know was they were the guilty party, they lived in the apartment building across from ours, and they would often play right out front in the parking lot.  So what to do?

One of the other things about the summer that was so much fun was water! Swimming pools and squirt guns! Especially in the early 90’s when they came out with the Super Soaker! It was the squirt gun every kid wanted and was blasted through the TV. commercials as the thing that would satisfy your deepest kid desires. It was, and I quote Wikipedia, “one of the first pressurized water guns ever made, outselling all of the motorized blasters that had previously dominated the market.” How could a parent ever say “no” to their boys asking for squirt guns in the middle of summer?  You could pump the super soaker up to 50 times and hold the trigger down while it blasted out about a quart of water at whoever stood in its path. Nothing like it had hit the market before! And to top it all off, the guy who invented it worked for NASA! Can a kid product get any cooler? For all 90’s kids reading this, you know the revolutionary excitement I am speaking of, and of course our parents caved and bought us a Super Soaker.

Now it gets even more exciting! The super soaker was not only used for squirt gun fights with your friends, but the commercials on TV clearly showed it blasting bullies away with loads and loads of water!

You can see it here:

Thank you Super Soaker marketing team for giving us such a genius plan! One thing the commercials lacked though. The bullies were only ever blasted with water. It’s only water! Any kid knows that water is just that…water. And where we lived it fell out of the sky for nine months out of the year. So no one around our neighborhood would ever care if they got hit with water. Furthermore, the bullies we were up against didn’t use verbal abuse but actually tried to inflict real physical harm. We needed something flavored with a lot more justice than water.

My younger brother got a lot of practice running growing up. Maybe it was the will to survive that always made him a little faster than I was. Therefore he was the fastest in the group and would be the one to carry out the attack. The rest of us would only be able to help with what we could muster out of our 8 year old bladders. The three of us managed to fill about a third of that Super Soaker tank with pee. Yes, warm yellow pee. And we pumped that super soaker well past the 50 maximum pumps. We pumped it, and pumped it, and pumped it, until we couldn’t physically pull the pump back anymore. Watch out bullies! Vengeance is about to be served out of something invented by a NASA scientist. You stand no chance!

Now time to execute the plan. It was the end of the day at dusk, and the bullies were across the parking lot playing under their car port. My sister and I watched from a safe distance as our younger brother snuck up opposite the car that was parked next to them. We heard Mom whistle for all of us to come in as the day was over. It was now or never. The adrenaline was pumping as the reality of our actions was coming upon us and vengeance was about to be ours. I heard a scream, my brother let out a warrior cry as came running out from behind the car, pulled the trigger, and a jet stream of warm golden glory blasted its way out of the gun! From five feet away he couldn’t miss! The eyes of the enemy were tightly shut as the stream hit their faces and flowed down their chest, quickly to be absorbed by their new clothes. It was just like in the commercials, except so much better. They were soaked with urine! For a few seconds the bullies were confused as the smell of retribution found its way through their nostrils. We ran for our lives back to our apartment, knowing we had no back-up defense except to run and hide.

To our surprise they didn’t follow. We were elated! Not only did we survive, but we just had an adventure we had only previously ever seen on TV. Our hearts still pounding, we started the bedtime routine directed by our parents. Put your pj’s on, go potty and brush your teeth. By now the adrenaline had slowed down, and we thought we were free and clear…until we heard a great and mighty pounding at the front door accompanied by a lot of loud choice words.

Mom, who stands about 5’ 2” and weighs about 105 pounds, answered the door to a towering woman filled with rage yelling that her sons “just got sprayed with piss!” The three of us stood there scared out of our minds as she relayed the story. The idea of feeling the wrath of Dad was unimaginable!

Now all growing up I was an extremely honest child. I could not for the life of me tell a lie. My Dad knew it. My Mom knew it. I knew it. My siblings knew it. But in this case it wasn’t just my life on the line but all three of us kids. If we were going to survive the night from the wrath of Dad, I was going to have to find a way to lie. I knew very shortly all eyes would be on me.

Mom listened to the lady, who was still yelling at her and holding out a pee-soaked shirt for proof. My time came. Mom coolly and calmly looked straight at me, and asked “Charlton, is this true?” I had no idea how to answer. I stood there petrified, and as I tried to find the words to explain, my head just shook slowly side-to-side. Mom didn’t miss a beat. She saw the head shake, turned to the towering lady with great boldness like David before Goliath and simply said, “My son never lies.” and shut the door in her face! She turned to us, asked no questions and sent us to bed. 

We were on cloud nine! We did it!!!! But as we walked through the hallway to bed, guilt began rushing to life within me! God Almighty knew I had lied, and I knew he knew it. I knew we would be in so much trouble, and that my siblings were relying on me to keep the lie in order to survive what was the best, most epic moment of vengeance we had ever experienced. We just lived every kid’s dream and better. So I thought about how long it would have to be in order for me to tell the truth and still survive Dad’s discipline for lying to mom. Two years, I told God. In two years, you remind me, and I will tell them everything.

Two years later I did indeed tell Dad the truth. He just chuckled at the story. All these years I thought he had told Mom, but turns out she just found out today. Whoops.

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