I’m taking a writing class to help keep my brain from pooping out. My first assignment was to write about a childhood memory, so I wrote about one of my top five favorite people, Grandpa:
My grandfather doesn’t command your attention; he incarcerates it, slams the iron doors in its face, jolts you into submission, inhales your soul, and then carefully places it into his pocket. No, “command” gives you a choice, but there is no such thing as “choice” with forces of nature.
In his heyday, grandfather stood six-feet-tall with broad, muscular shoulders—polished as a warrior with which his Manchurian ancestry graced him at birth. With bones of adamantium, he survived through bullet wounds, malaria, a fall through thin ice, and a heart attack. He never sought a fight, but wouldn’t blink an eye to quell one. Tell a lie, try to cheat him, do anything immoral, grandfather will turn your skeleton into jelly through his wrath that’s so palpable, you see the flames emanate from his eyes. Grandfather is mayor, general, judge, jury and executioner all in one.
Yet, to this day, his magnitude of presence matches the magnanimous heart that fuels his existence. Grandfather always gives to those who need help whether you ask for it or not—be it financial, educational, anything within his power. In the past, he would spend his entire paycheck on meals for his less fortunate friends, even if that meant eating free cafeteria food until the next payday. He would rebuild an entire town if he could, but that doesn’t mean he hasn’t tried. Grandfather is first and foremost, an honest man.
Which brings me back to my unforgettable childhood memory. It was a stifling summer day when we walked by a beach on the way home that looked like an oasis of ice-cold water in a sweaty glass under the blistering sun. Therefore, I incessantly badgered through my frail grandmother’s regretful “no’s” to let me play at the beach. I tried to pull all the guilt cards I could muster, “I came all the way from the U.S. to China to visit you two, but you won’t let me go to the beach?!” When I was ten-years-old, I didn’t understand the concept of my grandmother being perpetually ill and thus sensitive to prolonged sun exposure—she looked fine to me.
After about ten minutes of my high-pitched whining, my grandfather’s “NO!!!” detonated, sending pulsating, concentric shockwaves from the epicenter that almost quite literally, knocked me off my feet. Then followed the quietest taxi ride home ever.
Grandpa always keeps it honest.