Wednesday, May 16, 2018

The Juvenile Delinquent's Bare Butt

Rock Island, April 1977

One day during my junior year at Rocky High, my younger brother Kenny invited me out for ice cream.  I was suspicious -- he never invited me to go anywhere.  He must be buttering me up!

 And sure enough, the moment we sat down at Happy Joe's with our sundaes, he said  "I want to have a sleepover Saturday night."

"No way, José!"  I exclaimed. "No way I'm spending the night with eighth graders!"

From my eighth birthday through junior high, I hosted sleepovers at least once a month: three or four boys, plus my brother by default, since we shared a room.  We spent the night playing, roughhousing, eating snacks, watching tv, and staying up later than usual, and then bedded down, two to a bed and in sleeping bags.

There was always a lot of competition over who would get to sleep with the host; I always picked the cutest boy there, not necessarily my boyfriend Bill.

Kenny started hosting sleepovers on his eighth birthday, too, and of course I was invited by default.  It was fine when I was in grade school, or even in junior high.  But I was in high school now, too old for such "baby" activities.

"I haven't had one for a long time!" Kenny protested.  "And Mom says I can't have one unless you say it's ok, cause you have to be there."

I didn't used to mind bedding down with naked boys.  But at age 15 it would be threateningly erotic -- what if I got aroused?

"What will my friends say if they find out I spent the night with a bunch of eighth grade dorks?" I complained.

"They won't all be dorks," Kenny said.  "I have to invite Todd, but you can decide on the other two boys."

Todd was Kenny's best friend, a sports nut with sandy blond hair and green eyes (all models in the illustrations are over 18).

"As if!  My friends wouldn't be caught dead at a junior high sleepover!"

"Well, they have to be my age.  But...well...maybe there's one of my friends that you like.  I'll invite anybody you want."

In retrospect, this seems like an odd offer for a heterosexual boy to make to his heterosexual brother -- I wouldn't figure "it" out for another year.  But apparently Ken already knew, on some level.

My eyes lit up.  "Anybody I want?"

"As long as they go to Washington [Junior High]."

Considering that I was in high school, I knew a surprising number of junior high boys -- Kenny's friends, the younger brothers of my friends, some boys from church,  random boys that I saw at Kenny's school activities.  It wasn't hard to decide on one:

"Ok, for my first boy I pick Denny."  A tall, blond ninth grader with a round angelic face.  He played the lead in the junior high production of Oklahoma! last fall.

"No problemo.  Denny and me are tight. Kenny and Denny, Denny and Kenny."  He paused.  "So...who's the second boy?"

I thought for a moment.  Who was the cutest boy at Washington?

In an instant, it came to me:  "Rebel."

"No way!  I can't get Rebel!  He's old -- he was held back a year.  And we're not really friends.  I just say hi in the hall."

I met Rebel, real name Maurice, when Kenny invited him to church as part of his  junior high soulwinning regiment: tall, muscular physique, short hair, perpetual sneer, cute in a sleazy, semi-dangerous way.   He sat through Sunday school class and half of the morning service, but exclaimed "This is bogus!" and sauntered out the door before altar call.

According to Kenny, Rebel was fourteen-years old, but still in eighth grade.  He spent his time behind the gym, smoking -- cigarettes and pot -- and drinking and drawing fake tattoos on himself.  He had been suspended for getting into fights and trying to break into a teacher's car.  He was Catholic.  His parents were divorced.  A juvenile delinquent.

"Too bad.  That's my choice."

"He wouldn't come," Kenny protested.  "And besides, Mom and Dad won't let him in the house."

"They will if you say we're going to witness to him."

"There must be another boy you like better!  How about Steve?  He's cute, right?"

"I suppose...but I have my heart set on Rebel."

I'm not sure if I was really interested in Rebel, or if I just wanted Kenny to cancel the sleepover, but I stood my ground.  Finally he agreed to ask.  The next day he announced that Rebel was coming.

Adding a 14-year old juvenile delinquent to a sleepover full of 13-year old "nice boys" changed the dynamics.

Instead of watching tv, we listened to Rebel play his guitar (badly):

"I'm a rock star.  All the babes are wild to get at me, but I say, no, I'm too cool to hang out with girls."

Instead of playing pingpong and foosball, we lit a fire in the back yard and roasted marshmallows and melted army guy toys:

"That will teach those Viet Cong to bomb Americans!"  Rebel exclaimed.

At snack time, Rebel mixed up Coke, Sprite, and red Kool-Aid.

"This is the real stuff!" he said.  "It will get you higher than a kite, if you're man enough to drink it!"

It tasted awful.

Finally it was time for bed.  Kenny and Todd would share his bed, of course.  One boy would share my bed, and the other would get the sleeping bag on the floor.

"I'll take the floor," Rebel said.  "I slept on the ground lots of times, when I was running from the fuzz. Nothing's too hard for me."

"Well...if you're scared to go to bed with a high school boy, I understand."

He glared at me. "I'm not scared of nothing.  But just so you know, I don't like underwear.  I need room to move around, so I sleep nekkid.  That won't bother you, will it?"

"Hey, I'm in high school.  I can take anything."

So I shared my bed with a muscular juvenile delinquent who wasn't wearing any underwear.  He wouldn't let me cuddle with him, but my arm was inches from his broad bare chest, my hand inches from his bare butt.

No sausage sighting, but I helped myself to a butt fondle

I was up all night.

No more sleepovers!

See also: Seeing the Golden Boy in His Underwear


  1. Hey, playing guitar badly worked for Ted Nugent.

    "The fuzz"? Someone cue the laugh track.

    "That'll teach the Viet Cong to bomb Americans!" I thought fractal wrongness set in some time in the 40s.

    1. I don't actually remember a Viet Cong comment, but with the war ending less than two years before, it seemed like something he would say.

    2. I remember "We're finally over the Vietnam syndrome!"

      Most countries would call it being a normal country.



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