The Man, The Mystery

Recently, my buddy doug ran into this guy we knew from high school, Tony. He snapped a picture of him, which I am now sharing with you.

I barely knew the guy. He was in my 9th grade science class. During a discussion on leaches, he interjected, "Getting leaches on you is cool." Our teacher started laughing and said, "Yeah, if you want hickeys all over your body!" He went on to tell the class, to our further amusement, that he had gotten covered in leaches while he was swimming under some bridge to pack explosives underneath it, like some sort of ultra-awesome commando on an important mission from the president.

A year or two after high school, I drove my dad to an auto shop so he could pick up his car. While I was waiting to make sure his car was ready, this guy with a huge, unkempt lumberjack beard stepped out of the shop. He had a big piece of metal in his hand, and was staring at me like he knew me. It took me a few seconds to realize it was Tony.

He came up to my car and showed me the piece of metal in his hand. It was long and flat, in no way symmetrical, and one edge had been sharpened into a jagged edge. There was fabric or tape wrapped around the base, so one could hold it without slicing themselves.

"I make swords," he told me, "It's what I do."

He went on to tell me that he worked in the auto shop, where apparently they didn't mind if he spent his time looking like the unabomber and making prison-style shanks. He also said that with his beard he could get into any bar, despite being underage, and that I should stop by the motel where he lived to hang out sometime.

"Room 28, man, I'm always there!"

I never saw him or heard about him again.

When Doug ran into him, Tony filled him in on some of the more recent events in his life. Apparently that shop where he was working was owned by his dad, and Tony was in the process of purchasing it from him. Working as a sword smith/auto mechanic had been incredibly profitable for him, and when he was arrested for driving under the influence, he had a stretch limo pick him up from the police station within 15 minutes.

I think tomorrow I'm going to quit my job and look for a new career in the crazy guy industry.


Lew said...

I went to grade school with this guy. If I remember right the "planting explosives under a bridge" story has been a mainstay for him since like 5th grade. I ended up getting into this big fued with him, whereby he would come up with a crazy story and I would show that it could not be true. Then we'd do immature name calling. Now the teachers were always taking his side because he was a little screwed up with his stories and he was on ritalin back when ritalin was brand new. Later on when they wanted to put me on ritalin I refused to take it for fear I would end up like this dude. He kept threatening to beat me up, pushing me, etc. They would take the whole class the the bathroom at once, so all the boys from my class were in the bathroom. I was taking a leak at the urinal and he came up behind me and kicked me square in the ass. Luckily I didn't get urine all over myself. Anyway, I said "that's it, today we finish this" There was this anteroom to the bathroom at the school, about like a 10x10 entryway. All the boys gathered there to watch the fight. Tony was in one corner, I was in the other. They were yelling and cheering. Tony came at me arms flailing, trying to scrach my eyes out or something. I took a couple shots at his face but missed on account of his flailing arms, but then he ducked down to avoid my fists so he was bent over punching my stomach area so I took my fists and started raining blows upon his back like I was banging a drum. I kept hitting him in the back until he fell at my feet, and then I left him there on the floor. The teacher was coming, the class ratted us out, and for some reason despite the fact that he kicked me in the ass and then he attacked me first in the fight, I got in trouble and ritalin boy just got a stern talking to. I think I did ISS for that little incident, but he left me alone from there on out, and that was pretty much the end of my involvement with him even though we went to school together until graduation. 14 years after that fight when the picture was taken, he claimed to the photographer to have smoked weed with me when my name came up. But there were two problems with that. I haven't talked to him in 14 years and I don't smoke reefer.

Anonymous said...

yeah love the story, I'll have to get Pasta to ask him about the swords. I only remember not wanting to hang out with him because he was a loser not that I'm some sort of awesome motherfucker. I've either completely forgot or blocked it out that he was a huge liar. The one story I remember was when he had a birthday party or something and all the kids found some bottles of urine and feces. He claimed it was deer urnine for hunting but I doubt that. I wasn't there so they could be lying but I doubt that they were lying.