Monday, September 30, 2013

A Small Story About Big Things

Tape-Measure got his knick-name when he was very little, about eight or nine.  When he was that age he put a vinyl case on his belt and instead of a cell-phone, which he didn’t have, he carried a tape-measure.

He said he could see the invisible man.  No one believed a word he said.

“I can tell you exactly what is going to happen,” he said.

“Shut up Tape-Measure,” said Clarence.  Clarence was an older boy who said he was going to bust a light-bulb the next time there was a fire-drill.

“You bust that light bulb and you are going to get into trouble.”

“Shut up Tape-Measure,” Clarence said.  “You don’t know nothing.”

At the next fire drill, amid the noise and the students getting into their lines, Clarence broke the bulb on the small lamp that sat upon Mrs. Hendrick’s desk.  Of course Mrs. Hendrick saw, and Clarence was sent to the office.

Tape-Measure was also known to measure people.  Allison, who knew for certain she was four-foot tall, measured to an exact three-foot ten inches.  But after he pushed the button and the measure coiled itself with a snap, Tape-Measure told her, “Not really.  You aren’t really that tall.”

Allison swore at him and the other girls laughed.  Later, in the eighth grade, Allison got pregnant and left school.

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