We have all thought of getting even sometimes. Maybe we’ve had somebody exact revenge on us in the past for something we did, and we’ve considered exacting retribution on other people.
There’s a difference between envisioning the plan that will get you your desired retribution and carrying it out. However, the people in the stories that follow dealt with it as intimately as they could.
Even if not every vengeance story is a good one, you’ll find that these stories provide you with a lot of satisfaction as you read them. These individuals accomplished what the majority of us have only dreamed of doing.
At our middle school reunion this week (most of us attended the same K–8 school, ages 6–14 for our friends across the pond), my friend Janice (who I’ll call Janice) brought up this recollection as we were all laughing and chatting over Zoom.
Two grades would be taught together in our schools, except Kindergarten (that is, first and second grade would be taught together, third and fourth grade together, and so on).
Every year, the 7th and 8th grades were required to complete a unique project known as Toy Team (TT).
In essence, we would be divided into groups and given the task of creating a certain toy to sell. To judge our projects and get awards in a variety of categories (Best Presentation, Best Design, Best Research, etc.), representatives from nearby firms would be invited.
This project was intended to educate creativity, cleverness, teamwork, etc. However, it ended up being more bother than it was worth. for reasons that I’ll discuss shortly.
I had an intense dislike for TT. The main explanation for this is that the girls handled the secretarial duties (such as compiling final reports, surveying the groups, and listing outcomes), while the boys took charge of toy construction. Even though it wasn’t fair, I was always too scared to voice my opinions or seek assistance in creating something I’d always loved.
However, because of one child, my eighth-grade year was the one that nearly broke me.
Let’s introduce Carlos (not his true name). Despite being in seventh grade, Carlos was considered a math and science prodigy. Since none of the teachers at our school could instruct him at his level, he was forced to attend the nearby high school to take math and science programs.
In addition, he took tremendous satisfaction in being a cool kid, and he had a group of admirers who followed him around to validate his grandeur.
Carlos was, in all honesty, a little punk who could have needed a few lessons from the school of hard knocks. He was an extreme jerk who constantly denigrated other people. Since his parents, who were Lucius and Narcissa Malfoy brought to life, had supported him and threatened everyone in their vicinity, he was also extremely dangerous.
Carlos attended a private school, and because his parents were generous benefactors, even the teachers had restrictions on how harshly they could chastise him. He dismissed it, saying that detention was the worst thing they could do.
Seriously, Carlos was untouchable—that is until he killed someone.
When we found out we would be matched with Carlos, Janice and I were ecstatic to be in the same group. Carlos took over the project right away and started micromanaging Janice and me. Because Janice and I were quiet, private, and only concerned with our work, Carlos and his cronies found us to be easy pickings.
Carlos then went on to ruin our entire TT experience. He insisted that we had to write down our glider’s design since only he, as the chief math and science expert, could construct it.
Since it was only an eight-week group project and we knew our teachers would do nothing, Janice and I first put up with it.
Then it occurred one day in Week 6.
The gliders needed to be tested. Rubber bands and yardsticks were used to set up our testing equipment on tables. The gliders would be loaded into the elastic bands, pulled back, and launched. After that, you would gauge their flight distance and adjust as necessary.
Once more, the girls handled the recording while the boys took charge. I saw the rubber band stretched out and threatening to break when Janice and I were taking notes. Carlos was forewarned to adjust the glider and about the rubber band.
Our instructor, Mrs. Adams, yelled at him to “listen to your partners and adjust” when he objected.
Carlos followed instructions, but he pulled the glider back too quickly and too far. The rubber band broke as a result. Carlos yanked our glider back too far, slapping it in the face and shattering it to bits as the power of the rubber band struck the delicate wood.
Carlos became irritated and lashed out at me. “I see why you struggle with math and science.” He stated.
This broke me on top of everything else going on. Since I struggle with learning disabilities, math, and science were my worst subjects.
However, I’ve always enjoyed creating and fixing things. My dad is an engineer, and some of my first recollections are of him encouraging me to try different building materials and teaching me how to mend my toys. I was also a huge “Daddy’s Girl.”
I realized that my poor math and scientific skills were a source of concern for him, so I wanted to make Dad proud.
I escaped, just like in those corny movies from the 1990s. I sprinted the two blocks back to my house.
Luckily, my mom was a stay-at-home mother, so my professors called her to let her know what had happened and to ask that I come back to school. They knew that there weren’t many places I could have gone.
I was unaware that day that Dad was working from home.
He saw me running in, upset and crying, and came after me. He asked what had happened after calming me down.
I filled him in on everything. about Carlos assuming command. about Carlos being a mean bully and me and Janice doing all the labor.
The rubber band broke and my guilt trip.
Dad was kissing my forehead and giving me a soft hug. Dad is typically upset when he is silent. His eyes were black, and his mouth was strong and defined when I looked up.
I was afraid he was upset with me. I pleaded with him not to get upset with me or Janice because it wasn’t our fault.
Rather, Dad reassured me that neither Janice nor I had offended him.
He was upset at Carlos. and thought of a way to make that young punk pay for it.
After that, Dad gave the school a call to let Mrs. Adams know I was well and would be spending the remainder of the day at home. In addition, he emailed Janice’s parents and Mrs. Adams an email outlining his plan. Mrs. Adams and Janice’s parents agreed.
Janice and I were beaming when we heard it, even though we knew we would have to work alone to complete the task.
The following day, Mrs. Adams took Carlos, Janice, and me aside and informed us that Carlos was now on his own and needed to complete the project by himself because of the glider incident.
I would be working on my project, as would Janice.
Carlos expressed his happiness by saying, “Those two slowed me down.” But Carlos didn’t realize that Janice and I had all the information because we were handling all the paperwork.
To be fair, we promised to provide him access to our notes. However, he remarked, “I don’t need it to slow me down; it’s all in my head.” I think I can do it even better! Everybody had to sign a contract stating that Mrs. Adams would not be witnessing or exchanging any information.
For Janice and myself, the next two weeks were unquestionably the best of TT. We rebuilt the glider in less than a week because we had all of the notes. We even had a makeshift glider range made up by our dads, and we flew the gliders for the whole Saturday—one in the most popular color, blue, and the other in red.
We therefore made our glider better and even turned it into a game where we had to race others. We chose to name the toys after the Gemini Dueling Coaster at Cedar Point after Janice’s father commented that the red and blue gliders reminded him of it. It was a two-for-one deal.
We constructed the glider box and had two independent people, in addition to Mrs. Adams, verify our estimates. The two dads, who were coworkers, approved the math and also signed a large binder including all of our work, a presentation board with an overview, and their proof of work. The latter is crucial for future reference.
On this project, Janice and I put in a ton of labor, and it felt great. We held a pizza party overnight on our final day, speculating on Carlos’ anticipated response.
The day of the presentation arrived. We dressed nicely for our presentations because it was one of the rare days we could wear anything other than our school uniform.
Janice and I grinned broadly as we stood side by side with our gliders.
We took a closer look at Carlos, who was carrying around a box, documents, a presentation board, a glider, and other accessories. But instead of his normal haughty and abrupt expression, he had an uneasy one.
which gave me more happiness.
The way Presentation Day operated was that representatives would go around and select whatever gliders, boxes, presentation boards, binders, etc. looked the best during the first part of the day. We would then return after lunch. The class as a whole as well as the representatives would next hear the presentations from the people who had advanced to the next stage.
Janice and I provided clear, confident responses to the questions posed by the reps. The engineering firm where our dads worked was one of the companies present. Our presentation impressed them, and they decided to move us on to the next round.
Carlos was chosen as well.
and as the bell rang, he had a worried expression on his face.
Following lunch, we went back. and I double-checked because of the way the binder was arranged.
As luck would have it. The pages containing the work product and double-checked computations were missing.
Carlos did not record his experiments since he was a jerk. Thus, he made the decision to pass off our work as his own.
To further grind Carlos into the ground, Janice and I decided to adopt a professional demeanor. I approached Mrs. Adams and the delegates, inquiring whether they had examined our binder while our absence, as the proof of worksheets and computations were absent.
Mrs. Adams was also skeptical right away because of Carlos’ actions. and went straight over, grabbed his binder off the table, and started looking through it. discovered the page with corrections.
It appeared like he was involved because of the hurried way in which he had written his name next to ours at the top.
Upon glancing at him, Mrs. Adams questioned, “Carlos, why did you take the pages?”
“They gave their work to me, remember?” Carlos exclaimed.
Luckily, Janice and I dug out our copy of the previously signed contract that stated Carlos had rejected using our data from our binder.
By now Carlos appeared like the child who adamantly denied having eaten cookies despite a ring of crumbs around his mouth. “Well, they took my carefully proofread work!” Look! He displays the documentation of our fathers’ labor.
“I removed it and replaced it.”
Janice then turned to face one of the guys, who I later found out was the team leader for which both of our dads worked, and said, “Mr. Lionel, could you please check his proof of work?”
The back of ours is signed by our dads.
Mr. Lionel turned the page and nodded. Carlos failed to see that our fathers had written their names and signed the reverse of the work proof. Mr. Lionel gave a nod. “I recognize those signatures from anywhere,” he remarked, then shot Carlos a gaze that would have withered a flower.
“I believe you told me that you wanted to become an engineer someday.”
Carlos’s face became white and he could only nod.
“You know that engineers are serious about not stealing other people’s work?”
Carlos nodded once more.
“And that you would not only be fired from the company but also blackballed from the industry if you were doing this in a professional setting?” With his eyes fixed on this child, Mr. Lionel said.
Carlos had the appearance of a melted snowman who wished to sink into the earth.
Later on, I discovered that Mr. Lionel was a kind man. But gosh, at that moment, I could see why our dads respected him.
“I suggest that he be eliminated from the next round and be made to apologize to these two girls in addition to returning the proofs to them,” Mr. Lionel turned to face Mrs. Adams.
While not making eye contact with me, Carlos did return the paper and apologized for the crime.
Carlos was consequently not only disqualified but also failed the entire assignment due to plagiarism. TT received his first “D” on his report card because he accounted for at least 30% of our science grade. His parents were furious about this until they received a letter from Mr. Lionel informing them of their son’s actions and warning them that if he didn’t change, he would face serious consequences in his future career.
In the end, Janice and I took home Best Design… The greatest prize, though, was witnessing Carlos’ ego come down a few notches. Even though he was still rude, he was afraid of us.
Hey, I may not be very good at science and math. but at least I now know not to treat rudely anyone who could one day assist me.
My mother treats my wife quite badly. I always defend Mrs., but it’s something we are still working on (my mom is currently in my house, my rules power trip), so we will continue to work on it. This took happening when we were living on our own.
Our automobile was a pain to repair and the front window on the passenger side could not be rolled up, but we have never been extremely wealthy.
My mom was picked up at the airport by us. Rather than saying hello, my mother’s first comment upon seeing my lovely sitting in the front was that she was.
I politely asked her to move to the rear, but she became combative, accusing me of being disrespectful to my wife. I instructed my wife to take a seat in the rear while my mom went to put her suitcase in the trunk. I told her it would be worth it, but she sent me a look of treachery.
The window didn’t roll up, and I told my mom, but she didn’t seem to mind. It was a pleasant, sunny day—pretty much ideal for washing a car. It was as though my mother had forgotten about the window until the water splashed into her face.
I just kissed my wife, even though she started cursing at me. The cloth thing with the large soapy mess was the nicest part; yes, the car got wet, but it was worth washing. Naturally, we stopped at the drive-thru, got some ice cream, and took a long way home because my mom was wet and angry.
Remarkably, when we returned my mom to the airport, she was content to sit in the rear.
From the 1950s through the 1970s, when the Rust was first forming, Dad was raised in what is now the Rust Belt.
Thus, it felt like the Wild West, particularly in his hometown of working-class origin. Large factories were starting to reduce staff or close, and people were moving out in search of better opportunities. His hometown was soon known for being a dangerous place to reside. This came to pass when the city ran out of money to pay the cops to work seven days a week.
As a result, the cops had the weekend off and worked Monday through Friday.
You’re entirely correct if you believe that this was setting up a hazardous scenario. Dad used to tell me stories about how his neighbors’ homes would be broken into when the occupants were away, and the burglars would take everything they had since they knew the police wouldn’t be responding.
Grandpa, a Korean veteran, went out and purchased a few guns and made sure he had enough ammunition for the guns and his service revolver because he was so concerned about his folks.
By this point, Dad had tied the knot with my mother, completed his final year of college, and was residing in the biggest city in the state—two to three hours away from his hometown.
Since she was a young child, Mom had desired a 1964 Ford Mustang convertible in cherry red. Dad went out and looked for a broken-down Ford Mustang convertible in a junkyard, and fixed it up for her for maybe $200 (about $700 now, adjusted for inflation) as a (belated) wedding present.
As Dad would say, Mom was overjoyed to get the car and would boast about how her husband had spoiled her, saying, “I got lucky that night.”
In any case, Aunt Gertie, Dad’s youngest sister, had moved out to live with her new husband after graduating from high school and getting married.
Grandma and Grandpa decided it was time to downsize and get out of town. My dad was delighted to assist them with packing and moving when they requested my folks to come over because it would allow him to spend time with his school pals.
Regretfully, Dad’s car broke down a few days before he was scheduled to come and assist, requiring extensive repairs (he had to order several parts that would take a while to arrive). They were forced to utilize Mom’s vehicle.
Mom (and Dad) were anxious because that car, even if it wasn’t in perfect shape, had a great appearance and was a desirable target for auto thieves. Especially because my folks would be visiting for the weekend, a time when the police wouldn’t be on duty.
But Dad could fix a problem. and came up with his scheme to essentially make the car retrievable in the event of theft while driving.
Dad called his school friends, who had all gone on to become engineers, welders, or mechanics, as soon as he got back to the hometown to ask for assistance.
They agreed to help in exchange for some beers and some of my mom’s delectable food. Dad also included Grandpa in the situation. merely in case
The first step involved welding a cap on one end of an approximately 2.5-foot-long, 8-inch-diameter pipe.
After that, they added white fluorescent paint to the tube. They soldered a tin can’s bottom to the pipe’s open end after it had been filled with paint. Right next to the trunk, they fastened the tube to the undercarriage. In the end, they used a nail to puncture the tin closure, wound a small length of fishing line around the nail, and fastened the other end of the line to the wheel rim.
This is how it would operate: the wheel would revolve, extracting the nail, as the unfortunate robbers took off. Because the hole was small and the tube was loaded with paint, the paint would then trickle out of the nail hole slowly.
They intended to locate the car by following the path and returning it. You wouldn’t truly see the trap unless you were able to see the entire contraption by looking at the undercarriage itself. If you did, you would assume the pipe was a component of the vehicle’s operation unless you were an extremely skilled mechanic.
On Friday at 4:30 PM, they left the car outside (the police would be leaving by 6) and waited, each person taking turns throughout the night to let the others know when the car was taken.
Friday night was quiet.
Saturday also passed without incident.
Then, on Sunday morning at around one in the morning… Mom informed everyone when she heard the distinct sound of glass smashing. The automobile had left by the time they managed to leave. and they were heading correctly thanks to a lengthy paint trail. Dad, along with two of his friends, Sam and Tom, hopped into Sam’s vehicle and pursued the Mustang.
They realized that this might not have been the best idea at this point. One, they hadn’t brought any weapons with them. Two, a passing car may easily smudge the paint, leaving a misleading trail. Thirdly, they needed to maintain a safe distance to avoid raising suspicions from the kidnappers.
Dad, Sam, and Tom were lucky that the burglars weren’t too naive or too mischievous; after all, they only had to chase the car for about fifteen minutes until it stopped in the driveway of a respectable-looking house. The three of them waited for maybe thirty minutes, just to be sure, till the burglars entered the house and the lights went out.
The car’s glass was broken, but it could be readily fixed, and the robbers had hotwired the vehicle. Dad used his keys to start the car and followed Tom and Sam home after Tom had sealed the tube’s opening to prevent paint from seeping out and leaving a trail.
The robbers must have heard them go since Dad, Tom, and Sam realized they were being pursued by someone the next moment. With no speed traps around, Dad and Sam were driving at full speed, praying they wouldn’t hit someone as they ran stop signs and red lights and made hairpin corners that nearly threw them off.
As previously stated, this community embodied the Wild West in the 1970s.
Amazingly, despite the burglars being right on their tails, all three returned to my grandparents’ home without injuring themselves or anyone else. When the robbers arrived, Dad and Sam both honked their horns to let Grandpa know.
When the two robbers exited their vehicle, Dad’s heart raced upon realizing that at least one of them was carrying a knife and a baseball bat.
And now here comes Grandpa, readying his sawed-off rifle.
An interesting fact about Grandpa is that he was six and a half feet tall, weighed 300 pounds, was largely muscle, and never raised his voice to anyone.
As a child, Grandpa resembled a large, cuddly teddy bear to us grandchildren. However, you might not have thought of him as a sweetheart when you first met him.
The carjackers turned away from Dad, Tom, and Sam and fixed their attention on Grandpa. Their mouths were open, and their eyes were as large as saucers.
Grandpa spoke in a clear, low voice, “I’m going to give you boys to the count of three to get out of here and never come back.”
Grandpa said that, and Dad winced. Grandpa only ever smacked him once, and that was when Dad disregarded his warning that he would count to three.
Grandpa had business.
Grandpa never even reached the number “two.” The robbers leaped back into their vehicle and drove so quickly that they must have shattered the sound barrier.
By the middle of the week, my grandparents had packed up and the convertible’s glass had been fixed, allowing everyone to return home in safety and freedom, and with their vehicles.
I adore my mother, but she has a lot of witchcraft in her.
Everything has always been given to her. Because she was wealthy and attractive and had been lavished with attention by my grandfather and stepdad, she always received what she wanted. If you had gone to high school with her, you would have very much loathed her.
I never went out with somebody my mom didn’t like. Even though she always looks put together and has her hair and makeup done, she doesn’t like other women and considers herself a tomboy. In reality, though, she merely enjoys being around males because, in her opinion, women don’t appreciate that she is attractive, which takes away her evil superpower.
In this story, I’m going to refer to my fiancée—who is now my wife—as my fiancée despite my mom’s terrible behavior toward her. My fiancée is an ordinary, down-to-earth person who did not have the same privileges as my mother growing up. In her defense, my mother generally prefers people who can return the favor, but this particular instance is an exception to her cruel sense of humor.
Most of our guests for our little summer wedding were relatives and close friends. Men were housed in one cabin while women were in the other for pre-wedding celebrations that resembled bachelor/bachelorette parties.
Late at night, I received a call from my fiancée’s sister, who was complaining about how horrible my mom was acting. She was making comments about how my fiancée would upstage her at the wedding and making fun of everyone, but especially me.
Now, this may sound insignificant, but my fiancée told me that she was concerned about it. My mother has modeling experience and can turn it on when she wants to. My mom kept guessing extremely offensive responses during one of the bachelorette games they played where you had to guess answers about my fiancée. Later, when they were having spa time, my mom “spilled” some mud mask all over my fiancée’s hair.
My future sister-in-law expressed her embarrassment, saying it was seriously hurting my fiancée’s night. I so concluded it was time for a final party game. I cooked some pie when I went to the grocery store and bought pie tins, whipped cream, caramel, and chocolate sauce.
Nowadays, all you normally have to do to pull a practical joke on someone is put some whipped cream on a plate, but it is so boring. After filling these bad boys up, I drove to the girl’s cabin (by the time I arrived, it was already one in the morning; I had contacted my sister-in-law to keep my fiancée awake).
There was one more game, my fiancée should know what to do, I told her, winked at her, and let the females have fun. Mom was enraged. She eventually left and declared that she would not be attending the wedding; in fact, she did go, but she was not present for the ceremony.
Our party game was invaluable, but to be honest, my mom tore up the check she had planned to give as the wedding gift. I won’t lie, that sucked because she is wealthy. My mother did not talk to me for months following the wedding.
My only regret is that I didn’t know she was leaving in the morning, otherwise, else I would have purchased them water balloons as well, but she is still very irritated about it.
It seemed that my lack of clarity was unsatisfactory, so I requested a play-by-play from my spouse.
She probably scoffed at the bridesmaids’ lack of wealth and hated my wife (college students, but loving old granddad never allowed my mom to be a poor college student). My wife told me that she was coated in it, and everything was a sticky mess because she was wearing shorts, a tank top, and long hair. I wish I had gone up to witness the results of my labor.
It was designed to be a strategic game. Since she was sleeping and one of the pies was hiding a few feet away, she received a second pie to the face after the first one struck her in the face when she jumped up and the second one nailed her from behind.
My spouse claimed that after gathering anything they could, they chased her into the restroom and threw handfuls at her.
This narrative, which took place before I was born, concerns my mother, my uncle, and their elderly neighbor—who, no, I do not refer to as my grandfather since he is undeserving of the title. My mother is the eldest of her siblings, and my uncle is the second oldest if my memory serves me correctly. Alright, family life was not that pretty for my mum.
If my memory serves me well, she left when she was sixteen. Their elderly father was a nasty, resentful, and unyielding man who essentially cut my mother out of his will since she didn’t need his money. Before long, the Old Man passes away, leaving an inheritance for all the children—my mother excluded—with my Uncle receiving the largest share of the estate.
My two eldest siblings had already been born by the time my grandma requested my uncle for permission to give my mother a small amount of money. Uncle did not. He committed a worse crime.
You see, there’s something you should be aware of. My uncle, who shares the same name as the elderly man and is “religious” in nature (yeah, I intended to put it in quotes), managed to obtain the will and alter it so that he received everything and left nothing for the other people. So, how does Karma enter the picture?
As the tale goes, my uncle met a woman who was aware of his gain in the bank account two weeks after receiving the money. She then started talking to him sweetly, telling him how easy it would be for him to triple his wealth instead of merely double it.
She was indeed a con artist, and my uncle fell for it all. She withdrew every last penny from his account, not just the money he received from his elderly father. In conclusion, my uncle lost both the inheritance he had stolen and the remainder of his account to a scammer. The inheritance was intended to be shared among the family.
So what was his loss? Not sure. My mother believes the number, which was never disclosed, to be in the thousand marks or higher. He ought to have read the section about reaping what you sow, I suppose, since karma always exacts its revenge—sometimes quickly, sometimes gradually.
That’s the only thing I recall about this incident from 2014, which occurred during the eighth grade. I’ve always been the kind of man who thinks the world of my mother. She is a police officer and a single mother who did a great job raising my idiotic sister and myself.
Since I was a young child, I have always been proud of her since she is the most amazing woman I have ever met and is well-known in her workplace. In addition, there were three reasons why I was being bullied at the time in school. First of all, I was obese; second, I went to a Catholic private school before moving to a less expensive one since my parents were having trouble paying for my previous one; and third, I was a new student.
That doesn’t stop me from establishing friends, though. Though I made several devoted friends while I was there, I was undoubtedly not the popular man. However, there was this popular kid who we’ll call John. This man was rude. He would constantly make remarks about how big I was, how a guy could be so awkward, etc., and how I could be so obese. I choose to ignore John all the time because, whatever, I’m not going to ruin my day to appease this guy.
One day, I was going about my daily business when my mother arrived at school early to pick me up and join my class. I simply went up there, planted a peck on her cheek, and gave her a big hug and we went out.
When I arrived at class the following day, John began repeating this:
J: Hi there, that’s a nice lady.
Me: Excuse me, what?
J: You are so fat because that odd old lady pays for everything for you. She purchases everything just so you can have sex.
My heart raced.
It was scorching, not just warm. I don’t consider myself athletic, yet even though I knew this guy boxed for fun, I didn’t mind. I threw myself at him, causing him to tumble out of the chair with me, and I began striking him in the face.
I just started constantly hitting him in the face. I take his arm and bite him on the arm when he tries to defend himself with his fist. It was awful. In my wrath, I nearly broke the guy’s arm.
After the principal was contacted, I received a one-month suspension. When my mother called, she acknowledged I had gone too far but thanked me for standing up for her. That’s not how a nice person should behave in society, according to my director, and other moral nonsense.
Since that scumbag didn’t bully another child until the very last day I was there, I have no remorse about what I did.
Developing From Kindergarten through my senior year of high school, I participated in hockey. More likely, it was because I stunned my parents by learning how to skate in a single session when they placed me on skates when I was three years old.
That was how I was with most motor abilities, which would come back to bother me as I grew older.
I became more of an offensive lineman in football as I got older, but I was still in good shape throughout high school thanks to the intense workouts and high caloric demands of ice hockey. However, this did make me heavier than most players on the rink by about forty or fifty pounds, which had no bearing on my performance.
The inevitable outcome was that I was never selected for the “traveling” teams, so I became a defensive lineman in football instead.
I played hockey for exercise and enjoyment by the time I was in high school, but I never made the team (high school hockey is considerably more important in Minnesota).
I had a slight speech impairment, which contributed to my love of athletics because I tended to slur my words when I spoke quickly. Since schools were doing everything they could to stop physical bullying in the 1990s, I was naturally a prime target for bullies, who would punish me much more if I ever retaliated physically for the daily verbal torment I received.
As I entered my senior year and experienced my fourth and last failure to reach the High School team, I recognized a familiar discomfort when I entered my Junior Gold Locker room. For now, we’ll refer to him as A. He was a thin little jerk who liked to verbally torment others; he was two years younger.
Since I had relocated to the area the year before I entered high school, I did not have the same friends as the other students, and sadly, this was the kind of place where those who did not grow up with them would be shunned. As a result, I largely ignored him.
A was the type of person who would stalk lone victims; he would never risk going for persons who were accompanied by others. He would try to harass me because I was alone myself most of the time, but he wouldn’t have much success because of our apparent physical differences (I was 6’3 and 250 pounds of muscle from football, ice hockey, track, and field (shot put), and summers spent in the weight room) and the fact that I chose to ignore him.
Even though I ignored him, I was aware of the harm he caused to others. Besides verbally abusing people of all genders, he was also possessive and had been smacked by girls on several occasions. Additionally, he had an uncanny ability to extricate himself out of situations like that, which should have resulted in his repeated suspension or expulsion.
By the time the hockey season began, I had developed a strong dislike for A.
I was essentially unable to take any action within the school without getting sent out, so at the time all I could do was wait and pray for an opportunity to either seek payback or get him caught.
As I dressed, I paid no attention to A. We practiced the opening fundamental drills up until the fore-checking drill.
Kids are supposed to be encouraged by this practice to chase after the puck after it has been thrown into the corner and learn how to avoid getting smacked from behind while doing so.
A gave his abilities a lot of thought, and he did move rather well, yet his habit of cutting people with a stick destroyed any accomplishment he may have had. I had a feeling he would expose me and make sure it was him versus me.
He got to the puck first the first time we ran through the practice and attempted to duck away, but I knew he would get there first this time and had instead positioned myself to smash him. I wasn’t moving at full speed for more than half to three-quarters, and he was short enough to strike the boards rather than the glass, but the fact that I weighed more than a hundred pounds made him lose ground.
I got the puck from him on the ground, skated off with it, and then, just to get the better of him, I went to the opposite side of the rink and threw the puck into the empty net (our goalie was practicing response drills with a coach and a tennis ball).
A was there, battered and furious, as I got back to the close blue line. He began to talk nonstop, but our coach cut him off.
The coach cautioned him, “You better be ready for the hits A if you want to play with the Big boys.”
One of our goalies’ fathers was the coach, and they both openly detested A.
He advised A to “hit back, legally, if you are mad,” implying that she should adopt a Gordie Howe strategy and exact revenge without going against the law.
I had played for his son’s team for five years, so the coach also knew me. The large defenders who push players away from the crease and punish those who crash the net on them are usually preferred by goaltenders. I had gained the coach’s favor by now, and he was aware of my go-to tactic for handling quicker, smaller players.
We rearranged for the drill; this time, I was outside, and A would be the trailer since the coach had fired the puck. I heard A approaching from behind, so I assumed he would crosscheck—a nasty maneuver that referees hardly ever call on when smaller players strike larger ones.
I waited until I was getting close to the goal line before coming to a sudden stop, planting my feet, lowering my shoulder, and letting my left stick touch the puck. I did this because I didn’t want to take a wooden shaft to my back.
He had barely enough time to slow down and back away before it smacked face-first into my right shoulder. I had timed it almost exactly, but he was unable to stop the hit. He was struck in the face, but he also slid backward and slammed the ice with his helmeted head.
I turned to retrieve the puck after losing hold of it and carefully made my way back to the line.
When I got to the line, A was falling off the ice and struggling with the door latch to get out of the arena. This was the final time we saw him during practice. That year, A participated in a U-16 tournament at a town approximately thirty miles distant.
All of my actions against A were lawful; I hit him twice to gain control of the puck or to prepare for a hit I knew was imminent.
That week, A was noticeably missing from school. The coach and other parents didn’t like his mother, and the majority of them detested her child, so she sought to get me dismissed from the squad.
She attempted to have my mother fired because she was also her supervisor. My mother, who was employed by the school district, began recording A’s mother’s actions and filed a complaint. For essentially the same reasons, A’s mother was almost as despised as he was.
My mother finally changed jobs within the school system, and A’s mother was dismissed for cause after going too far (she had been stealing from the district for years).
After that, A avoided me at all costs and never tried to irritate me again.
Although he was a true tormentor of children his age, I rarely had the opportunity to get even with bullies like him, so it felt great to be able to silence a bully with no other options.