Hill Rage?
Off the Wall, Mar 13
, 2014

Was thinking about my friends the other day, you may know them as Jack and his best friend, Jill. I happened to encounter them as I was strolling through my land of make believe not far from home.

So, there I was, when who comes around the corner, but Jack. “Hey, man, how’s it going and where are you headed,” I said. After pausing, I said, “Bet you’re on the way over to see Jill. How’s our little sweetheart doing?” I don’t normally call anyone by that name, but I knew that would cause Jack to give me a slight smile and that is just what I got. After all, I’ve never known either of them to have ‘gone’ (or come, as far as that goes) with anyone else.

My next question was “spot on” as my sister would say (a New Zealand expression). “Are you going for a little walk, as usual?” He shook his head affirmatively. “Do you mind if I walk with you?” I asked. “Not at all,” he said. “After all, I haven’t seen Jill for a couple of months now. It will be nice to see her again,” I said.

As we headed to her house, we decided to sing our favorite song, “Row, Row, Row Your Boat.” Neat song. His boyish voice projects falsetto qualities where I like to sing bass parts. So we sang, in two-part harmony until we arrived at Jill’s.

When we reached her house, Jill’s mother came out and addressed me belching out, “Hey Jack, who’s the old man?” Some people have a knack of making us seniors feel so good.

After a brief conversation with her mother and the pair of friends they left for that famous hill and I returned home where I had to write a column or two for The Latrobe Bulletin.

As I wandered back to Pee Vee Alley eventually getting to my Ligonier St. door, certain questions entered my mind as I remembered the duo’s last experiences.

First, Jack and Jill went up the hill to fetch a pail of water, right? Was the pail already there, and second, why would the container be up and not below the hill? Anytime one seeks the clear mountain springs, I guarantee you, it’s not on top of a hill.

Third, did either of the two bring a bucket or find one hidden in the brush? Can’t say I remember either one carting one from home. So it must have been stashed somewhere.

Did he fall as a result of having to carry the heavy pail down the hillside, or did he get into a hissy fit with her regarding who would be carrying the water whereby Jill nudged him which made him fall? Stranger things have happened, you know.

It was noted that when Jack fell, he broke his crown, yet nothing happened to Jill. Something isn’t right here. If she fell as far as he did, then she must have gotten some kind of boo boo! Figure, if Jack and Jill went up this hill on a regular basis to get pails of water, then, by now, they shouldn’t they know the ropes?

On the other hand, let’s say it is their first time. Jack has just asked Jill for a date. “Hey Jill, how would you like to go out with me? I’ll bring the bucket and we’ll go climb a hill to fetch a bucket of water. Are we on?” “OK…” she states. He picks her up at her house, as stated above, and off they go. Shortly thereafter, they start climbing the hill, him on the right and she on the left. They get to the top, rest a bit, discussing the view and the challenge they had just accomplished. Maybe ten minutes later, he fills the pail. Admiring his efforts, Jill goes to kiss him. Enthralled, he steps back losing his balance and tumbles down the hill, slamming his head on the rocky soil, uncontrollably making his way to the bottom, breaking his crown upon impact.

Flabbergasted, she runs after him, down the hill, and then falls, brushing her flesh against the stoney hillside yet coming up unscathed.

Do you think Jack had hill rage? I would like to think all was forgiven. To get more water, Jack would have to go this time alone. Fat chance Jill would climb this hill!

There’s something to be said for not dating anymore.

- Paul J. Volkmann
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