It seems more people than not have had some experience with a school bully. I'm certainly no exception. Initially, it was one particular boy that inspired the Ricky character, though he took on the personalities of several interesting young men I've met over the years as I became involved in character-development. Everyone knows a Ricky. This proto-Ricky, really did torment me in junior high and one year of high school. He sat behind me in most classes, putting tape in my hair, and telling the teacher I wouldn't stop hitting on him. It seems like mostly harmless teasing now, but at the time, he was the bane of my existence. How I hated that boy! He seemed to spend his entire school day thinking up ways to annoy or humiliate me. He eventually joined the masses of drop outs, and I heard he went to prison. I didn't see him for over 10 years. Then, one day, I ran into a friend who was already chatting with a guy I din't recognize. Just a redneck guy. Then, it hit me. "You used to torture me in school!" I shouted. "Oh. I sure did," he said casually, "I recognize your voice now. Sorry about that." That was enough for me. We became what I guess you would call, unlikely friends. He was still the same old scalawag, but I could accept that. During his second stint in the slammer, I met a cute redhead who shared a last name with my "Ricky," but that was about it. This ginger was somewhat of a hipster, very enlightened and keenly intelligent. He actually read books. And lots of them! I quickly learned that they shared last names because they were cousins!  When I married my red-haired fella, I became my bully's family. I became his cousin. My teenage self might have really pooped herself if she had known that!


Rachel Crisman
08/03/2012 7:09am

The bully from your book reminds me so much of my own childhood bully but mine was much worse because we would beat everyone up and stuff them into lockers,trash cans and spit gum in your hair. I imagine my own tormentor....yes.....I remember it well.


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