A Chapter for Ten, Eleven, and Twelve Year Olds

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: September 04, 2016

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Submitted: September 04, 2016




If you’re not ten, eleven or twelve, this chapter doesn’t concern you. Anyone under ten can read it when they come of age. Besides, they have too much as it is. If you’re over twelve, bugger off. We’ll just take a moment to wait for these guys to vacate the premises. While we’re waiting, here’s a little joke for you. How many surrealists does it take to screw in a lightbulb? A fish. This is still the funniest joke I’ve ever heard. Are we alone yet? Okay, here’s the deal.

Did you guys know that you are being ripped off for three of your teenage  years? That’s right. Tenteen, eleventeen and twelveteen. How did these years get removed from the teens. You don’t see anyone trying to take twenty-one, twenty-two and twenty-three away from their brethren, do you? I’d like to see them try that with the seventies. Those people fight back. 

The real question is ‘why ?’. When I was ten, I wondered that myself. Here I was entering the world of double digits. Yet, they made me wait. For three long years I waited when I could have been acting like a teenager. The wonder decade. Decade my ass. Since when does seven add up to ten? 

I  pleaded my case to anyone who would listen. When I turned eleven, I tried hiring a lawyer, but his retainer would eat up all of my allowance. And I needed that quarter. There was so much I wanted to do. I was obsessed with having hair on my schmeckle but was told that I’d have to wait until I was a teenager. I didn’t want to wait; I wanted hair now. 

Teenagers got to stay up later, go out more often, drive and fight with parents. I wanted to do all of that too. But the worst part is that no one likes you. Little kids don’t respect you. They know that ten, eleven and twelve aren’t real numbers. And anyone who possesses these numbers doesn’t deserve their respect. There’s a stink that comes from you that gets worse when you become a teen, but by then, you have something to blame it on. Not so when you’re twelve. At that point it’s just stink. And teens hate you too. But to their credit, they hate everyone.

Don’t think, for one minute, that this demotion of numerical importance was accidental. If you can’t see that, then try looking at it from the grassy knoll. Conspiracy, yes. Theory, no. This was designed a very long time ago. Cave days. Third or fourth generation homo sapiens. By this point in our development, fear was our most primal safeguard, and our greatest fear was teenagers. Even then it became apparent that something would have to be done. So one night…

“Welcome to this month’s gathering of the Valley View Cul-de-sac Co-op Neighbourhood Watch. For those who don’t know me, my name is Grunt. This week we’re going to discuss Ugh’s proposal to cut the teenage years from ten to seven. It has become clear that ten is far to long to put up with what teenagers are about. Hell, that’s nearly half their lives. Now, each of us was to come up with an idea on how to do this. Those kids might seem dumb, but they’re not. They’ll smell this coming a mile away. So it better be good. Trog, you start.”

“Well, I heard about this thing called ‘planned ignoring’. That’s where you don’t pay attention to the kid. Just pretend it ain’t there.”

“Like, always? Do you feed it?”

“Naw. Just give em the brush off. Cold like.”

“For three years? There must be a more practical way than that. What about you, Flint?

“What if we gave birth to them three years later than now. That way we they’ll be thirteen when they’re ten.”

“I see where you’re going with that, Flint. But where would it all end?”

“I know what to do.” Chester was a large man with a forehead that sloped back at the most incredible angle. Sweat would bead up and just sit there. It would never fall. It couldn’t.

“i know what to do.” he said again due to the long pause caused by everyone looking at his bead of sweat that wasn’t falling. “The part that’s holding us up is the ‘teen’ word. We need to get rid of it. We’ll call those years ten, eleven and twelve. Just drop the teen and make like it didn’t happen. We shorten the teen years by three, they’re none the wiser, and Robert is your mother’s brother.” No one ever knew what that last part meant, but his idea was a good one. it caught on. Up and down the Cul-de-sac and beyond. It’s lasted to this day. Do you know what it takes to get those years back? It takes the balls of a teenager. I feel compelled to let you know that my kids are well past their teen years, so...do what you want. Remember, to do ‘snarky’ right, you need at least a decade. There’s nothing worse than a snarky twenty-three year old - the end result of a late start.

© Copyright 2018 Norman K. All rights reserved.

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