**PLEASE READ PART 1 FIRST** https://manmademurphy.wordpress.com/2012/07/01/tunnel-of-doom/
Welcome back for another heaping of childhood trauma! Now where did I leave off last time? Oh that’s right. Something along the lines of…
“DDDAAAAMMMMMMMMMNNNNNNNNN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!” Give or take an exclamation point, of course.
My skateboard, my magnificently crafted utopia on four wheels, had careened into the infamous “Tunnel of Doom” like a pair of dentures into a mouth full of gingivitis! It was now trapped in the wild black yonder alone and scared.
Now, you could say that it was my fault for skating him in there with all the grace and poise of an inebriated rhino. Or that I never should have placed my rollable little friend in the runoff gutters in the first place. But we all know it was my little brother Brian “BD” Dickens fault. Not sure how exactly but it was. Probably had something to do with that helmet he was wearing. Thing could distract a pregnant woman while she was in labor.
“So…what’re we gonna do?!” excitedly asked BD the guilty little helmet wearer.
“We’re gonna send your little butt in there after it!!” I very calmly replied.
“Of course! I can’t fit in there!”
“Yea, but I don’t think I can either!
“Well you should’ve thought of that before I skated my board in there! Now get on your tiny knees and start crawling!”
Having been moved by my powerful words and perhaps a verbal threat or two, BD reluctantly removed his trusty yet ugly-ass skate helmet as he got to his knees. I think he might’ve mumbled something about “If I don’t make it, tell my mom I love her.” But I honestly wasn’t paying much attention. My skateboard was in trouble! And I wasn’t gonna let anything keep BD from getting it back for me! Not some scary tunnel with slime ridden walls, not plague carrying rats, not BD’s crippling claustrophobia, nothing!
After several minutes of cowardice, BD finally poked the upper half of his body into the terrifying tunnel.
“Do you see it?” I bravely asked from a safe distance.
“If I say yes, will you let me out of here?” asked the helmet-less BD.
“Of course, buddy!”
“Yea, it’s a little ways up. But I can’t quite reach…” I quickly grabbed BD’s little legs and started shoving him in like a pickle into a barrel.
“Grab it! Grab it!” I politely yelled at the top of my lungs.
“Ow…OWWW!!! Stop! STOPPP!!!” he exclaimed for some reason.
“Just hurry up and grab it already!”
“I can’t! it’s too far! Now pull me out! These rats are really mean!”
Realizing that my little brother was ironically too little to reach the object of my affection forced me to reassess the situation. I yanked,..I mean, gingerly pulled the little guy out of the sewer pipe and started working on another tactic while he inspected his rat bites.
“What if I grabbed you from the back and kinda threw you into…”
“I’ll tell Lindsey about that dream you had.” Said BD quickly.
“Alright, alright, fine! I won’t throw you. But what if we threw something else?”
So we quickly scrounged up some rocks and put plan “B” into place. It was fool-proof…in theory. I’d throw rocks at the skateboard from the top end of the tunnel and try to knock the board out of the bottom end of the tunnel. Unfortunately, because the tunnel was so dark, I couldn’t see it from the upper entrance. But the skateboard was visible from the bottom end. So BD was going to wait at the bottom and keep an eye on it. If I hit it, he’d let me know and I’d aim for that same area again. Like I said, the plan was fool-proof. Too bad we were idiots.
“Just shout out which direction I need to aim!” I yelled to my partner in buffoonery. “I probably won’t hit it the first time!”
“Ok.” Said idiot number 2.
I threw a rock into the tight, cylindered abyss like a pitcher on a tee-ball team. It hit nothing but wall. And maybe a rat or two.
“Aim it more center!” he yelled like a verbal conductor at a symphony.
I reared back and threw another rock into the rat highway.
“What’s the word?!” I asked. “Did I hit it, BD ?!” This time, I managed to avoid the walls and the rats and also the skateboard. “Hey BD did I…?!….BD? Um…” But, I did hit my little brother….hard.
When the little guy finally regained consciousness, we decided to move on to another plan.
“The rocks were a bad idea,” I professed like a world renown sage. “We’d have to hit the board a million times to get it out of there. They’re just too small.”
BD and the softball size lump in his forehead stared at me with restrained malice as I spoke.
“Oh, and they hurt. But I’m guessing you’d know that better than me, ‘ey bud?.” I fearfully chuckled.
Plan “C” would’ve made Wile E. Coyote himself proud. Which should tell you something. We figured that if small and apparently painful objects were the problem before, we’d go the exact opposite direction. We thought a well placed basketball would surely knock the skateboard out of that constipated pipeline. So, I lined up my shot like a professional bowler with type II diabetes and let ‘er rip right into the pie hole of the tunnel. Amazingly, the ball actually made it almost half way into the tunnel before it got stuck.
“Hmmm. Honestly didn’t see that coming.” I remarked.
“Imagine that.” said BD with an ice pack draped over his forehead.
“Don’t worry, ice-face. I’ve got a little back-up plan.”
“You have a back-up plan and you want me not to worry?” inquired BD with full support.
I quickly scooped up all kinds of balls from our houses. Volleyballs, footballs, even tennis balls. Nothing was off-limits.
“Alright, so the first thing we gotta do is get the basketball unstuck.” I proudly pontificated. “Then we can use all the rest of the balls to get out the skateboard. It’s perfect!”
“Are you sure this is gonna work?” asked BD…again.
“You ask me that so often that it’s lost all meaning.”
And without any more pessimism or good sense from BD, I started chucking a couple of balls into the unforgiving black hole. To my genuine surprise, the basketball didn’t budge. So I threw in a few more. And it only seemed to get more stuck. I unfurled every piece of throw-able sporting equipment we had into that damn dark tube! And it didn’t care! Like an expectant mother at a buffet, what it took, it kept!
“Son-of-an ass-head!!” I casually remarked in passing. “We’re completely out of balls, ideas and time! My mom is gonna be home any minute, man! And when she sees what happened she’ll kill me! And that’s if she’s in a good mood!”
“Would your dad kill you?” wisely asked BD.
I pondered the little guy’s question as the clock to my demise ticked further down.
You see, my mom bought me the skateboard for my birthday after I begged her for it. It was expensive, dangerous and she hated doing it. But she did so because she wanted to shut me up. And it worked. My dad on the other hand, didn’t even know when my birthday was and couldn’t care less about some skateboard I had.
“No BD, he wouldn’t!!”
Now it was time for plan “D” for “Dad.” BD and I quickly ran to our respective houses and grabbed our dads. We figured the two of them working together would be able to come up with a solution twice as fast. BD and I regaled them with our dumb-ass exploits at break neck speed and awaited their council. Without a word of debate or even acknowledgement, our dads casually gazed into the tunnel of doom and were as unimpressed at our crisis as they would be watching an infomercial starring George Foreman at 3:00 am.
Plan “D” was ingenious. It was inspired. It was basically just taking two big-ass 2 x 4’s and shoving them into one end of the tunnel until everything came vomiting out the other end Olsen Twin style.
Our dads never did say anything to our moms about the “Tunnel of Doom” incident. They never even got mad at us about what happened. They made no threats and issued no warnings about what would happen if we ever did anything so stupid again. They never had to. Because everybody knows that a real tough guy speaks softly yet carries a big stick. And holy bacon wrapped blue jeans dipped in caramel sauce, sticks don’t come much bigger than giant, rat-proof, tunnel length 2 x 4’s!!!
The End…until next time