Thursday, September 25, 2008

The Hartwell Chronicles … Take me to the water

“I held my breath when they dipped my head, then I came up shiny and new. …”
Actually, I came up sputtering and spitting out water.
No, I was not getting baptized in “the river.” I was getting dropped, repeatedly, into a dunking booth.
You know I love the kids. When I was asked to participate in the dunking booth at a community fun day, I thought, “Sure, it’s for a good cause.”
Mistake number one.
I volunteered to take the first shift. It was all worked out in my mind that the first few people wouldn’t be able to hit the target.
Mistake number two.
A crowd of young children, all at least under 10 years of age, came rushing with tickets in hand and balls prepared to throw.
“Surely, they can’t hit that good so young,” I thought.
Mistake number three.
Water was all I saw for a good solid hour. I was dunked no less than a 100 times.
Each participant got three balls for $1.
Sure some would miss on the first try and even the second. But just a sure as Jesus rose on the third day, I got dunked with the last ball.
Better yet, some children got me on all three tries. Whoosh, whoosh, whoosh is all people saw.
To top it off, the water was so dark and murky. Our local fire department got it from one of the hydrants, but they didn’t let it flush out first and lose its dirty look.
Yes, I was dunked in a nice big pit of dark brown water. Is it too much to ask for clear?
I can’t swim, and seeing how to float back up was impossible. I hit my head on the seat a few times.
The children all gathered around and laugh diabolically as they dunked me each time. I failed to see the humor in it.
One boy spent at least $10 dunking me by himself. Soon the whole family was joining in.
Then a crowd of older men thought it would be fun to take a few turns.
I started to talk some smack about them – it’s no fun without a little egging on – but I stopped after that first dunk.
They all said it was so much fun at the dunking booth.
Fun for who? Not me!
“Dunk the newspaper lady,” they screamed.
All these dunkers or their parents better have a subscription to “The Hartwell Sun.”
I was cold, wet and tired by the time my shift was over. Water was dripping all over the place.
The only thing that looked decent was my hair (water does wonders for the natural).
At least they gave me a shout out during quarter bingo.
I am too through with the dunking booth. From now on I’m sticking to easy community service events like celebrity waiter/waitress night.
My infectious smile and sugary sweet personality will definitely get me the most tips of the night.
Maybe my dunkers will tip the newspaper lady with money instead of into water.

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