A Quiver of Cool Arrows

I am surprised that the Beta Report has not mentioned anything on the podcast about The Walking Dead.  Guys…there is just two episodes left this season!  TWO!  This is the season where (per the rumors I have heard – or created) that Daryl possibly dies!!  Daryl!  Our favorite archer since Legolas!  It seems as though they have been too busy talking about other topics and have somehow forgotten about Rick and his gang of mischievous rapscallions.  I guess “who was the best Superman?” conversations are more important. Come on guys, the best Superman was clearly Christopher Reeve, pre-horse riding paralysis. Then in a close second is Dean Cain.  Who am I kidding?!  Dean Cain was the best.  In 90210 though.  When he was dating Brenda when she went to Paris with Donna while Dylan stayed at the Beverly Hills Beach Club ; fooling around with Kelly.  Oh young summer love…Back to TWD… (Spoiler Alert)

As I watched last week's episode, I could not help but wonder what life would be like without Daryl.  As I watched him, Rosita, and the blonde lesbian doctor chick walking on the railroad tracks I thought to myself, “whatever happened to Daryl’s crossbow?”.  It has been more than just a few episodes since he’s rocked that bad boy.  And as BLDC was yapping about life and how they should enjoy it, she gets a cool arrow right through the eye.  Then you see wanna-be Two-Face holding Daryl’s baby and then I thought, “Oh!  That douche has it!  That’s right!”  Of course Daryl and Rosita somehow make it out of this little ambush and Daryl is reunited with his weapon of choice.  Daryl has been shooting cool arrows for six seasons.  He’s been so precise with his crossbow and cool arrow action; each arrow cooler than the next.

We all know someone who falls in to the cool arrow category. This person does not necessarily have to be the smartest or funniest person...but, if shot from your metaphorical bow into the world, they make it a safer more interesting place to live.

I woke up early this morning and was pondering the following: “Who in my life is a cool arrow that I can always trust to be in my cool arrow quiver?” We all know someone who falls in to the cool arrow category.  This person does not necessarily have to be the smartest or nicest or funniest person you know, but they are definitely the equivalent of a quiver-worthy cool arrow that if shot from your metaphorical bow in to the world, they make it a safer more interesting place to live.

For example, when it comes to the Beta Report, “Uno” would be the guy who is the biggest and best cool arrow in my quiver.  I would totally shoot him in to the atmosphere and hope he lands safely on a walker’s skull.  Javier would be second on the cool arrow list.  Sorry Javier, "Uno" has you beat in the cool arrow department.  Don’t take offense to it.  You’re still DOPE.

I think back on my childhood...I may have fallen in to the cool arrow category. Especially in my brother Jazz’s eye.

Then I think back on my childhood and realize that sometimes, I may have fallen in to the cool arrow category.  Especially in my brother Jazz’s eyes.  This next part of this blog is all true.

The year was…sometime in the mid-late 80s. Hulk Hogan was a superstar and Magic might have had HIV but didn’t know yet.  My family and I were headed on our second excursion to Ecuador. Were we missionaries? Not officially, but for some reason, every time we went to Ecuador, we would take an extreme amount of luggage.  What is extreme you ask?  Well try two large suitcases for each of the four children my dad’s nuts bore, filled with American treasures for our less fortunate kin. Sure it was clothes from the sale rack at K-Mart and Pic N Save, but it was new and from California.  Nowadays when my parents go, they take a duct-taped box filled with goodies from the 99 Cent store.  I have tried to get my parents to use the regular human luggage I have but they think its nonsense to use luggage with four wheels that is easy to control.  In fact, my dad always takes this duffle bag that literally feels like it has a dead body inside of it. 

Nevertheless, there we were, at LAX with 4 hours to spare.

Back to the lecture at hand.  So we got to the airport 4 hours early as usual. My dad is a real stickler when it comes to flying. He thinks that the earlier one gets to the airport, the better. Keep in mind friends that this was pre-9/11. There was no official, real need to be at the airport so early for these international flights. Nevertheless, there we were, at LAX with 4 hours to spare. For those of you who have only traveled post-9/11, back in the day, people who weren't scheduled to fly were allowed to go all the way to the actual gate to say goodbye to their loved ones or good riddance. 

Our entourage included all of our Californian family members. When I say all, I mean like 20 people at the airport with us to bid us adieu. It was almost like a family reunion.  It was ridiculous. I mean, it’s not like we were flying out at 7pm either.  Our flight was at 1am! 1am and still we had ourselves two bushels of Ecuadorians hanging out at LAX; as if it were LAX – Vegas. 

On this fateful night, our parents decided to dress my brother Jazz and me in matching outfits. Why? I have no idea. Perhaps they felt that making us wear the same clothes made us look more high class or wealthier? I have never seen the Trumps or the Hiltons dressed alike. But the More’s, when they traveled, they matched.  JC Penny style too.  Oh well, that is something I will never understand. 

An airport is quite the playground when you are a youngster.

Jazz and I were bored of modeling our argyle sweaters and khaki pants for our aunts and uncles so we decided to go on an excursion through LAX. We had nothing else to do for the remaining three and a half hours we had to spare after checking in. We recruited three of our cousins to come with, and we were off.  Did anyone notice we were gone?Nope. How could they?!?  It was like Home Alone.  They just figured and assumed that Kevin and Buzz More were there and accounted for.  

An airport is quite the playground when you are a youngster. There are so many places to run around and be mischievous; especially at 11 at night.  There are elevators to joyride in and escalators to mess around on. My brother, cousins, and I had found a secluded spot with two of the biggest escalators we had seen all night, to call our playground. We would race up the escalator going down and down the escalator going up.  We had found a mechanical playground to kill the leftover time and we were loving it.

I always wondered what would happen if I sat down on the escalator steps and rode them all the way to the bottom.

After a few times up and down the escalators in reverse fashion, I had a Newtonian idea. As a young boy, I always wondered what would happen if I sat down on the escalator steps and rode them all the way to the bottom. I figured I would get to the bottom and slide right off. This was my hypothesis and on this night, before my brother and cousins, I would put my hypothesis to the test.  

I started off on the top of the escalator and sat down on the first moving step. With hope in my eyes, I let this mechanical beast take me down to a curious crowd of four. I did not worry about getting my khakis dirty by sitting down on these steps which had seen the soles of many souls. All I cared about was getting to the bottom and sliding off and hearing cheers from my family waiting below. As I approached the bottom of the escalator, I could see the anxiety and interest in the eyes of Jazz and my cousins. They too were probably wondering what was going to happen once I reached the bottom, and my throne-like step disappeared under me. We were all about to find out...


I got up as fast as I could. I could feel the fresh night air on my then hairless butt as tears began to run down my cheeks.

"Oh my god!" Jazz's voice shrieked as he saw my gluteal damage.

My JC Penny khakis had gotten caught in between the step going under the ground and the teeth-like end that awaits at the bottom of every escalator. My hypothesis had failed. I did not slide off as I had anticipated and there I stood, with my pants and underwear ripped to shreds along with my little butt. The tears on my pants and non-Calvin’s looked like claw marks that could have been made by a lion. This was one lion's den I did not survive. My cousins tried to keep their snickering to a minimum but I could faintly hear them as Jazz tried to console me and keep me calm.  

"What are we going to do?" I asked in dire despair. "If mom and dad see this, they won't let us go to Ecuador!"

"Relax" Jazz replied, "I have an idea."

Jazz had me remove my sweater and tie it around my waist. I wiped my tears on my little oxford shirt as we walked to the nearest restroom – bloodied ass and everything.

"Look, keep the sweater tied around your waist until we get on the airplane." Jazz said in his calmest voice. "Don't show mom and dad until we are up in the air. There is no way they can get mad once we are already flying."

"Ok" I whimpered.

"And stop crying or else they are going to know something is wrong." Jazz added.

I took my argyle sweater and tied it around my waist.  And started my Cerci-esque walk of “shame” back to the gate, where possible judgment awaited me.  My ass was burning from the blood and open wounds that were left behind. But I sucked it up like Jazz had told me to do. I did not want to ruin our vacation.  

We got back to the gate and pretended like everything was fine and dandy.  Little did everyone know that my gluteus minimums was sore and fiery.  I don’t remember how long we waited until it was time to board the plane.  But it felt like an eternity.  Jazz would check up on me every once in a while to make sure I was doing OK.  I have to admit, that I did a pretty good job hiding my external menstrual cycle from my parents and everyone else.

Finally it was our time to board our flight.  We hugged everyone (this alone took like 30 min) and we lined up to board our plane.  Jazz made sure to walk behind me to avoid any suspicions as to why I was walking funnier than usual.  Couldn’t blame scoliosis for I hadn’t been falsely diagnosed with it yet.

Jazz cued me that it was safe to tell our parents what had happened.

Once we were in the airplane and up in the air, Jazz cued me that it was safe to tell our parents what had happened. I walked over to where they were seated and with tears welling up in my eyes, pulled my backwards apron off and showed them my butt. My mom slightly freaked out. As did my dad. I was then taken to the on board restroom and changed out of my bloodstained khakis and after a few kisses from mommy, I was fast asleep dreaming of my next hypothesis to test....

"What would happen if I jumped off the back of a moving truck?"

4,000 miles later, I found out.

In the movie Mallrats, Brodie said it best:

"Listen, not a year goes by, not a year, that I don't hear about some escalator accident involving some bastard kid which could have easily been avoided had some parent - I don't care which one - but some parent conditioned him to fear and respect that escalator."

I could have lost my nuts that night. Instead, I lost some blood and a good pair of khakis.  One thing I did gain however, cool arrow status in my brother’s quiver.  That no one, not even a hungry escalator, can ever take away.  Oh I also gained a few scars on my arse that are now safely covered by a plethora of butt hairs.


F. Rian More.