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Old 08-15-2013, 01:11 AM
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Default The Day I Ran Away From Home

Although I grew up in the Cincinnati, Ohio neighborhood of Fairmount during the early and mid 50's, I was very much a small town boy. My world consisted of the six block area surrounding our three-story house, which stood on a high hill, complete with it's wonderfully huge porch. Our neighborhood was a mix of ethnic and religious persuasions. German-Irish and Catholic were our claims to fame.

Attending a different school than our non-Catholic friends set us apart. We handled the mysteries caused by different beliefs with friendly teasing. Our friends envied us the extra days we got off for religious holidays. It just so happens that a common religious observance had a part in my running away from home when I was eight years old. It was a stunt I never tried again.

On Good Friday, many Catholics attend church from noon till 3 PM. My school teacher mother expected my older brother and I to both be there. When she arrived at St. Leo's, she joined us in our pew. Seeing that I was still wearing dirty play clothes, she told me, in no uncertain terms, to go home and change into my Sunday best. Her stern tone and harsh gaze were enough to let me know that I was in serious trouble. It mattered little that I was in the house of the Lord, since in her eyes I had disgraced our family.

Not wanting to face her anger and rage again, I decided the only option I had was to run away from home. Remembering it now, I doubt if I put much thought into my escape plan. I did fix a sack of fried egg sandwiches, and took along several Double Cola's, so I wouldn't go hungry or thirsty during my daring adventure.

I made the rounds of my non-Catholic friends houses, looking for a place to hide from the vengeance I knew would be my mothers'. Several friends turned me away, afraid their mother's would catch on to my scheme. Finally, my friend across the street hid me under his enclosed porch. I kept an eye on my surroundings, safe from discovery by the hinged lattice-work wooden skirt that edged his house.

Since I hadn't made plans beyond lunch and a place to hide, I was soon hungry again, and started to worry about the dark. As I laid there wondering what to do next, I remembered I was missing mom's Friday night salmon croquettes.

Bracing myself for my mother's German temper, I walked across the street and into our house. Mom was very much the taskmaster, but that night she was compassionate. After three helpings of supper she doled out my punishment. I was grounded for a month, lost my allowance for a month, and had extra chores to do for the entire summer.

While I still didn't understand why I had to get dressed up for church, I made sure I always passed muster after that day I had ran away from home. I doubted if God cared what I wore, but since my mother did care, I decided that it was best to stay on her good side.

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Old 08-16-2013, 03:05 AM
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that porch story sounds pretty familiar. for some reason those underneath areas interested me as a small kid... like a secret cave waiting there just for me... to spy out the world in safety, i think.

really, it makes me want to read tom sawyer again. i sure as hell wish there were more books like that.


i've recently been watching my simpsons early season collection. there was a very nice episode in which homer invents his own religion and gets clearance from god to do so. let's see... "homer the heretic," season four, episode three.


i remember believing in the christian god as a kid, then becoming very unsure about his existence sometime before age ten. i had some catholic friends at the time, both older than me, and they tried to bring me back at one point. unfortunately they got pretty pissed off when i questioned the logic of their statements, and were quite passive-aggressive with me ever after.

it's always a great time to talk about religion.
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Old 08-16-2013, 04:42 AM
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What the disillusioned Homer failed to grasp was that the BIG GUY he sat next to was only Saint Peter playing a prank; the ONE TRUE GOD is, of course.....the CAT!
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