Snowballs from Hell

A snowball to the face, or central man region, hurts. But, not as much as Covid. I was wondering if anything good can come of this God awful pandemic, especially during the holidays. Here’s where I went.

Wherever there is snow, youngsters take advantage of that snow. A good snowball fight can calm the nerves, ease some suffering, and ultimately fight an enemy which must be destroyed…..your neighborhood ‘snow toughs’. It’s a perfect Covid fight where many kids cry, but nobody dies.

In our neighborhood, there was a gang referred to as the “Carbones.” They ran every carnival in town and had links to the “BoneCars”. They ran the local demolition derby and bumper cars on Sundays. The Carbones would schedule their derby during Catholic mass when all the fathers were plowing snow. It was a great escape and excuse for the fathers praying they could get the Sunday off.

Snowball fights tend to be socially distant, which is a key requirement for Covid safety protocol. Usually, unless you run out of snow, those in snowball combat will not get closer than six feet before tossing and hurling wet ice balls directly at your forehead. Ice balls are considered Christmas War Crimes. Rocks in the balls? You can look at that at two ways. Look away or run away.

Thinking back to a neighborhood snowball fight when we were kids, my brothers and I fought fair. We’d wad up a ball and toss it at the opponent as though we were Roberto Clemente. (Best right arm in the game.) The Carbones would get nasty. As God’s wet flakes landed on the tongues and yellow teeth of the Carbones, it would melt into a volcano of sulfuric filth. We were terrified but stood our ground. As the Carbones approached, we were well armed, and we even had a snowball sniper on our roof in case things turned ugly. His name was Joe. (Unfortunately, a Carbone picked him off when he briefly lost attention to make yellow snow). God rest his soul.

Although we thought we were winning, one of the Carbones spat in the snowball, crossed the line and crammed it in the mouth of one of ours. (This would break COVID safety protocol nowadays.) It was a kamikaze mission. That rendered us defenseless.

As I reflect on those snowball fights, I realize that COVID has nothing on the Carbones. Thankfully, they aren’t around cramming yellow snowballs in our faces, and if we’re lucky enough to have snowfall this holiday, we can rest assure that most snowball fights will be appropriately safe and socially distanced.

Stay warm…Happy Holidays

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