January 25th, 2005


Tod the Ripper

From theatrical_muse: What is your funniest childhood memory?

Let's see... I suppose one of my practical jokes would qualify. Yeah, I think I'll go for Tod the Ripper.

Tod was a huge bully (well, he looked huge to most 10-year-olds) at our school who used to extort kids' lunches and sometimes their homework in return for not beating them black and blue. I'd reached an agreement with him a while before--he valued my skills and I told him I wasn't good at cracking locks when I was scared. Actually, fear just makes me faster, but he didn't know that. Look, he wasn't an intellectual giant.

All the same, I thought I'd be a lot safer if I neutralised him; besides, he was picking on some of my mates. So one day in the caff, right at the start of lunch when it was packed, I made my move. You know, for a good pickpocket it's just as easy to do the opposite, so I went past his chair on the way to the other side of the room with my lunch tray as cover. I'd got into a magic shop in the Alpha levels the night before, and it only took me an instant to slit the back seam of his trousers and undies and introduce two little raspberry bombs with timers.

Then I sat down and waited for the fun. About five minutes later, the first bomb went off. To everyone else it looked as if Tod had let fly with a really loud and fruity one. His eyes and mouth both went big and round with surprise as he clapped his hands to his bum and leapt to his feet. From behind--the best view--it looked like he'd blown his trousers and underpants open at the back seam. Then the second one went off (complete with an artistic touch of hydrogen sulphide) and he made this mighty leap into the air, squealed like a pig (not that I've ever heard one) and fled the room. Well, he tried to, but his pants fell down and he did too, knocking another kid's tray to the floor, and landed with his face in the horrible school mush they were serving that day.

Everyone cracked up (so to speak) and frankly I thought I'd do meself an injury. When it all died down and I had my breath back, I said, "That was one hell of a ripper!" which just started them off again. That's what they called him after that: Tod the Ripper. And a lot worse, come to think of it. But he left people alone from then on. Well, he'd lost all his pignity ha ha, hadn't he?