I was the class clown growing up.
Many of my friends can attest to how I was frequently flailing, pulling faces and mimicking actors or cartoon characters. So many tipsy nights with mates, rolling about on the couch after my Scooby-Doo impression or a re-enactment, (when you’re built like a stick figure any movement invariably looks awkward and funny). But now, a serious adult, I’ve had to stop childish ways to be a role model for teaching, and to be taken seriously for my writing.
Well… who am I kidding? I still laugh at fart jokes, am frequently in hysterics over my uncoordinated puppies, and have the occasional juvenile prankster moment.
I know my flatmate is relieved I don’t get up to my old tricks. I can still remember deciding it would be a fantastic idea to scare my Grandmother when I was twelve years old. She was sitting at the dining room table, quietly sipping on a cup of tea and playing Patience like any respectable English woman.
I’d tied my hair up in rubber bands so it spiked out from my scalp in many different angles, practiced my crazy face in the mirror, and was currently crawling along the floor, marveling at my plan. It has going to be hilarious. Grandma would get a fright and then proclaim I was the funniest child in all the land!
Just as I got behind the kitchen bench with my target enjoying her afternoon respite, ready to pounce forth and roar “Surprise” my plan fell to pieces.
I hadn’t accounted for the family cat.
Said feline sat upon the kitchen bench, watching my approach. Now I don’t know what I had done to offend poor pus, but just as I had reached my hiding spot she began to hiss and arch her back.
Grandma, seeing the feline’s distress, hopped up to calm its nerves… and found me hunched behind the counter, giggling silently to myself, with hair like a space alien.
“SURprriisseee….” I stood up, the wind taken from my sails in response to a polite ‘Oh’ at my discovery.
Foiled again! Dastardly cat!
After that episode, jumping out to scare people didn’t feel quiet as much fun, and I transitioned to more sophisticated jokes, like whoopee cushions and prank phone calls.
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