A Fool Skipping School

A Fool Skipping School

A Story by T. L. O'Neal

Just another story about something stupid I did as a kid.


A Fool Skipping School
Written by: T. L. O’Neal


    Everyone has done stupid things as kids, and I was certainly no exception. To tell you the truth I probably have done more stupid things than most people. I just never could help it really; I guess it was in my genetic makeup or something like that. More than likely it comes from my Dad’s side of the family, because he seemed to be the master when it came to doing dumb-a*s things. Hell, I still do stupid things even now; I just don’t think ahead too far I guess. So when it comes to kids growing up, one foolish thing they always seem to do and it’s a sort of right of passage too I guess is and always has been… skipping school.  I suppose in a way it’s how they get that feeling of having a little power and freedom in their lives.


    When I was in the sixth grade we were living in Texas at the time and I never really had thought about skipping school that much, until this new kid moved down the block and started school where I was going. Why is it always the new kid? Anyways, he and I became fast friends and he had this brilliant idea to skip school on that upcoming Friday. I was reluctant to do it but he persuaded me to go ahead and skip with him. He said that he had done it many times, and that there was nothing to it. He also said that it would be a lot of fun too. Yea right.


    I wish I had knew then what I know now, that whenever someone says that there isn’t nothing to something, they’re either stupid or lying, maybe a combination of both. Whatever the case, I let him talk me into this so-called adventure. He then proceeded to tell me that you could do whatever you wanted to do; anything… is what he told me. To tell you the truth, I never did know what I wanted and to this day I’m still not sure half the time. Anyhow, we were walking to school that morning and then ducked into this small canyon to hide out in. It was somewhere that I always used to like to go play, so I knew my way around it pretty good.


   The canyon was close enough to the school that we could hear the morning bell go off, and then we knew that our adventure was about to start… but what to do first? That was a big question considering that we hadn’t made any plans at all on how to spend the day. So we decided to go watch all the kids go to class. This gave us a superior attitude since we were free from the confines of the school and they weren’t. This did feel pretty good to us, like we were getting away with something, but how do we fill up the whole day when you have to hide the entire time? So we decided to explore around a bit, which wasn’t really anything special since I’d done it a hundred times over already, but we did it anyhow.


   There was an old shack down in there by a grove of Oak trees, so we went to it first. It was a pretty neat shack as far as shacks go, at least in the eyes of two sixth graders. Well, everyone around there just called it the hobo’s shack but more than likely it was something some older teenagers built to go party in. There were some girly magazines in it and we thumbed through them a bit, we did find them curious but that was about it. We weren’t old enough to make maximum use of them if you know what I mean.


   We soon grew tired of that and decided to look around some more in the canyon.  Sometimes we would find dead animals that washed into it after a big rain or some bones that were always neat to look at. If the animals hadn’t been there too long and were bloated, we would stomp them. Now this wasn’t the most pleasant of experiences in the world but for a young boy it was kind of cool. Especially the sound that it made and the green fog that would come out and hover in the air. Even with the stench and the heaving that you would do after smelling and tasting that putrid scent that was released into the air… it was still fun.


  The one thing that we did forget to do however was to bring some food with us. If this guy had so much damn experience at this; skipping school that is; you would think he would have had enough sense to bring along something to eat. He did come up with a plan for that though, one that I wasn’t that crazy about… it was stealing.


   This little fun excursion was starting to turn into a pain in the a*s. He said he knew where a house was that had some fruit trees in the backyard. So here we go down the back alleys and cutting through yards till we got to the house. We jumped the fence and it was a nice house too; not what two poor kids were used to. Anyways, we jumped it and starting picking pomegranates. Not the best fruit to make a meal out of but being that it was the only thing in season that’s what we got. I never had seen or heard of one before but every time that I see one in the grocery store now; this is what I think about.


   We were picking away and filling up our jackets with them, when out of nowhere came the maid that worked there. She came out screaming at us in Spanish and swinging a broom. We didn’t understand the language but we understood that broom all right. Damn, as mad as she was you would of thought those pomegranates were hers, or maybe she just liked them a lot. So we lit out of there like there was no tomorrow and we ran out and jumped that fence as fast as we could go. We didn’t even slow down running across the street till a car slammed on its brakes and almost killed us. I remember it was so close that I touched the hood of it with my hand to brace myself up to keep from falling when it stopped… I was scared shitless.


    The man in the car seemed to be concerned…about his car that is. He cussed us up and down and screamed till I thought he would bust a vein, maybe he just liked pomegranates too. Or the simple fact that we were holding him up from going to meet his secretary for some private dictation, that’s enough to make anyone mad I guess. Whatever it was, we got the hell out of there too and ducked back into the safety of the canyon. As we were going back to our little hideout, I stepped on a coral snake. Now this is the most poisonous snake in the country and I had the good fortune to step on him. He did get a little pissed at this and struck at me but luckily all he got was blue jeans. This skipping school idea was starting to look more and more like a bad idea as the day went on.


   We made it back to the hideout and decided to go ahead and eat. I wasn’t too sure what to do with this leathery covered fruit, so I watched him to see what I was suppose to do with it. I didn’t want to look stupid or anything like that you know. When he tore his open I was even more confused on what to do with it then, it looked like it was full of reddish frog eggs. He started to rip out those frog egg looking seeds and starting chewing on them and then spitting them out. I wasn’t very keen on eating something that looked like it came out of the backend of a frog but I was hungry. So I did as he did and to tell you the truth they weren’t that good in taste or very filling either. They sure weren’t worth all the trouble that we went through to get them or the fact that a car almost hit us too.


   With our stomachs still empty and us bored as hell, (I wished I was back in school.) we decided to go exploring some more. At least this would help to eat up some of the time out of the day till it was ok to go back home; I sure didn’t see anything exciting about this skipping school mess. At least at school you do get a hot lunch and you can sleep on your desk part of the day.


    So we were exploring around and we decided to walk this rock ledge that was up high a bit, it seemed to be a good idea at the time. As we were walking along, I stepped on some loose rocks and when they gave way, I fell off the ledge. Luckily for me there was a large grouping of cactus growing down there and I landed smack dab in the middle of them. Luckily it didn’t have the big-type thorns but those small hair-like ones. So instead of getting a few big thorns, I got thousand of small ones. I got them stuck all in my legs, a couple thousand I do believe. At least I had something to do now, which was pulling those cactus thorns out of my legs. I always had liked cactus, to look at them anyways, but at the moment I didn’t particularly care that much for them that much. After all this, I was pretty doggone sure that God was punishing me for skipping school. I never had such a string of bad luck in all my life.


    I could tell you one thing; this skipping school junk just wasn’t working out that great for me. I didn’t think it was that great and it sure didn’t turn out as I expected it would. Anyways, I picked those thorns out for an hour or more, and then we decided to give the adventuring up and go back to his house and wait till school let out. We crawled in through the back window and stayed there and watched TV. Now I’m not an expert on skipping school by any means but wouldn’t it made better sense to went to his house first. There was food there and stuff to do and the big one, it wasn’t hazardous to our health. I have to admit; I was pretty pissed off at him for not mentioning that we could of gone to his house. With all that starving we did and the fact that it was just a miserable time all away around, it didn’t exactly endear me to the fella. I guess that’s why I can’t even remember his name now.


   When school finally did let out, I took my a*s home. Boy, was I ever glad to be back there too. Even with the all the chaos at home, it was still better than going through what I just had done. I never did find out if he got in trouble for skipping or not, because we moved back to North Carolina that weekend. That day I skipped was suppose to be my last day of school and if it hadn’t been, I seriously doubt that I would have done it. If I had known what I had to go through skipping, I damn sure wouldn’t have done it for sure.


    We made it back to the old NC without much incident. And I was glad to get back here where things seemed to be a bit better, except for the fact that I brought back with me some Texas cactus thorns still in my legs. It was a painful reminder that skipping school was a stupid mistake that I did, and I wouldn’t be doing that again till high school.



© 2010 T. L. O'Neal

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Featured Review

odd and weird story from a kid's life.... i didn't skip school until it was sanctioned in HS (we had one per semester) i spent mine playing pinball (which i hated) in a bowling alley (which i also hated) and when i got home, the school had called, so my mom had to cover for me. to make things more stupid, school had let out that day at 10am due to a teacher's death....
not as eventful as yours but just as senseless... this one reminds me what a great storyteller you are. the ability to make someone take your experience and relate it to their own life, another good one TL

Posted 11 Years Ago

21 of 21 people found this review constructive.


another great excerpt from your memoirs. I never got up the nerve to skip school but if I had, it certainly would not have been as humorous as this.
Giggled about the cactuses and the Spanish speaking - broom weilding woman - very familiar to me out her in the desert southwest.
Great story T.

Posted 11 Years Ago

11 of 11 people found this review constructive.

I love the way you tell a story, Terry. This one I can especially relate to...reminds me of when I used to ditch school in 5th grade, sitting on a third floor landing (out of school, but still trapped). And I've had those nasty fine cactus thingies in me, so I could feel your predicament. My stepfather got them all out (I forget how).

Looking forward to the next adventure :-)

Posted 11 Years Ago

15 of 15 people found this review constructive.

This was terrific as always. There are far too many parts that I loved, so I can't narrow them down to a few. It was so funny. I really have to say I can't blame you for forgetting his name. Why would he want to skip school and starve, almost die, when he could have been watching TV and eating. My favorite part of all was the last line-"It was a painful reminder that skipping school was a stupid mistake that I did, and I wouldn�t be doing it again till high school." And here I thought you learned you lesson. haha. Terrific T. Jen

Posted 11 Years Ago

15 of 15 people found this review constructive.

T.....I don't know how you do it. Time after time you put out these stories....The most amazing stories I have ever read, I just can't get over it.. You have the most amazing talent for writing my friend, and every story I read from you just reaffirms that all the more....If you were to put out a book today I would buy it....I love reading your work, it takes me to another place in time...The Stories are vivid, funny at times, and just plain friggin fantastic..And this story is no different..Keep up the good work my Irish Brother....

Posted 11 Years Ago

17 of 17 people found this review constructive.

There's a canyon just across the street from my old elementary school, and I can remember playing there after school. Didn't skip class until high school. Once skipped out during a nutrition break with David Wells. He was a ninth grade; he didn't know I was a seventh grade cuz of my size. We went to Yum Yum Donuts. Got back to school fifteen minutes into the next period. First truancy! David Wells currently pitches for the San Diego Padres. I shoulda played baseball! lol

That was such a fun read cuz of how similar things went for me when they went badly!! Well done! I love how you can give real length to a piece without boring the reader. I gotta work on that. Good job!

Posted 11 Years Ago

16 of 16 people found this review constructive.

Great story T. Your writing always provokes memories ...

I was holding my breath for you a few times. The snake, the car, the broom. lol. dang, T. I'm so glad you made it through that day. Good thing you was moving anyways ... seems like that would make it kinda harder to get caught skipping. lol

Thanks for sharing the excitement, the memories and letting us the reader get to learn more about you. Great stuff as always, thanks for sharing!

Posted 11 Years Ago

16 of 16 people found this review constructive.

Pomegranates!!Can't stand them!!!
Bunking off school always leads to getting into trouble, you can't really go home and
you end up just being bored and hungry!
I couldnt have that luxury of skipping school as we were in a boarding school, I just kept
running away instead!
And fancy your friend having an empty house!
Funny story as is all your work, great humour and a lesson to be learnt i think!

Posted 11 Years Ago

18 of 18 people found this review constructive.

Everyone understands the language of the broom!!! So you learned your lesson... unitl high school. I look forward to reading the scrapes that got you into!!!

Posted 11 Years Ago

18 of 18 people found this review constructive.

I love this memory but it was not so pleasant for you it seems in the end .. skipping school was a no no for me i was afraid lol
You know how to tell a story.. you need to get them all together in a book!
Good stroy enjoyed reading it.


Posted 11 Years Ago

20 of 20 people found this review constructive.

Another great write. I always love your wonderful stories. Boy, talk about a crappy day off!

Posted 11 Years Ago

20 of 20 people found this review constructive.

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49 Reviews
Added on February 19, 2008
Last Updated on October 24, 2010


T. L. O'Neal
T. L. O'Neal

In the sticks, NC

I started writing as a way to work out my feelings and found that I enjoyed it very much. I enjoy humor and feel that you can find it in most things, even though it may be hard to find at the moment. .. more..


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