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(TFT) The next meeting

   The next meeting I ride my bike early and sit on the side walk to watch
people arrive.  Sure enough, each kid gets dropped off by a parent and has
their hand in their pocket.  I raise my head and eyebrows and look askance at
them.  They smile and pull the knife from their pocket.

   A Coleman, wood grain handle, two blades, one on each end.  Cool indeed.

   A Boy Scout logo on the knife, shorter, but looks like more blades,
possible can opener.  Respectable.

   A Swiss army knife, where the hell did he get that.  His uncle must have
been in the war, very nice.

   A drugstore single blade, poor kid, the blades dont stay open on those
things, hell probably cut himself using it.  His parent musta bought it when
he wasnt looking.

   Oh, Robbie Flammang.  He gives me the spread finger hand of hello that is
not a wave.

   I ask him Did you get a knife.

   He nods and says Yes. And goes on into the meeting.

   I love physics nerds.  So oblivious.  If they know it, then everyone knows
it.  Why would I need to see it.

   Boy Scout logo knife on the next kid.  Nice.

   Boy Scout logo knife, smaller but cool.

   Schrade, single blade, very expensive.

   Holy hell.  This kid has a sheath knife on his belt.  Not only it is about
15cm long it doesnt fold.  I use my left hand to do a wave off.  Man, it
has to be a folding knife they wont let that in there.  He looks panicked,
then turns and runs after the car.

   Mom.  MOM!  She slows and stops.  Hes talking fast while unbuckling
his belt and sliding the sheath off.  He puts the knife in the back seat then
waves bye to her, and rebuckles.

     Around the corner comes the Rebel patrol.  All 6 of them on 2 bikes.  2
on the handle bars and two on the shoulders of the oldest ones peddling.  Its
just like watching the circus arrive.  There is a fascinating degree of skill
and balance yet also a sense of foreboding that someones child is going to go
missing.  How do they even get mounted like that.  The oldest squeeze the
breaks hard and the two on the handle bars slide off and stand after two or
three steps to decelerate.  The oldest dismount,  kneel down beside the bikes
and the two youngest hop off their shoulders, one of which is wearing and
entire machete on his belt.

   They crowd walk over me, and I hold up my arms to protect my head.  I
quickly stand and turn to watch them approach the door.

   A scout leader at the door points at the machete, and shakes his head.
You know better than that.

   The youngest one draws the machete and its just the handle.  There is no
blade.  He puts it back.  The scout master nods and they go inside.

     For the entire meeting everyone thinks he is wearing a machete.  The
scout leader from the door runs over to tell Mr Graves, the scout master, that
its just a handle before he makes a scene.  All the scouts are looking and
whispering to each other.  The kid I told to leave the sheath knife is giving
me the evil eye.

David Michael Grouchy II

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