Revenge of the Jocks

Waaaaaaal, lessee.  Another summer day, another rippin’ good yarn ‘bout a gun-totin’ ‘Merican shootin’ somebody’s face clean off’n his fool haid:

A jockstrap pulled over a student sports manager’s head in a high school locker room more than 50 years ago provoked a 73-year-old South Dakota man to fatally shoot his long-ago classmate.

Carl Ericsson of Watertown was sentenced to life in prison Friday.  Ericsson was charged in the killing of retired Madison High School teacher and track coach Norman Johnson, who was shot twice in the face as he answered his front door.

Kenneth Meyer, the Lake County state’s attorney, said Ericsson has indicated that the decades-old locker room incident led to the shooting. Johnson was a high school sports star and Ericsson was a student manager.  — FoxNews

Wow.  Locker room prank goes rogue.  And another Mitt Romney vote lost.

You think this incident will be cited in the current barnstorming movement against school bullying?  Bully the wrong little wiener and half a century later he comes gunnin’ for you?  Somehow I suspect not.

I would like to hear more about the mental state of the involuntary jock sniffer.  I wonder if this seminal (sorry) experience colored his attitude toward athletes and sports in general.  I wonder what his demons looked like — giant tightie whities?  Ace bandages?  Crusty jock straps stinking of adolescent sweat that leaped and grabbed at his face, screaming with evil laughter and jeers?

As for Coach Johnson, he missed his calling: Jerry Sandusky recruited guys like this in the Penn State locker room and for his charitable organization benefiting wayward boys.

I would also like to monitor the inevitable scene where Ericsson explains his sentence to his cellmates.  “Sumbitch wrapped my haid in his filthy jockstrap 50 y’ars back — fahn’ly set his ass straight, yep.”  Is there any doubt he’ll be picking fabric from his dentures every day for the rest of his miserable life?

Of course, the real tragedy here is that Coach Johnson answered the door empty-handed — unarmed, unprotected, vulnerable.  Out on the fruited plain, where guns are as iconic as horse shit and choon-tabacca, a man owes to himself to watch his own ass at all times.

Meanwhile, no fewer than six attorneys sent letters to the victim’s family suggesting civil litigation to recover damages, not from the gun company, but rather from the manufacturers of the undergarment involved with the prank.  Contributory negligence, conspiracy, and product liability.  Is this a great country or what?

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11 Responses to Revenge of the Jocks

  1. Red White & Blue says:

    Why do you hate America?

    • 'Nonymous says:

      RWB: It’s not America he hates, it’s Americans. He manages to say something nasty about everybody — the convicted shooter, the victim, Plains culture (whatever that is), gun owners, Jerry Sandusky, lawyers, and by lumping them all together he diminishes the significant differences between each. It’s a real cynical hack job, and not especially clever or insightful, at that.

      • Squathole says:

        ‘Nony: You left out the prosecutors, Mittney, and Ericsson’s cellmates! Your reading skills must be on the slide. Re-read the post and correct your remarks. C-minus!

        But thanks as always for stopping by, and please come again soon.

  2. rbhexem says:

    Carl would have received a much different reception at our house! I’m always locked-n-loaded!
    It wasn’t that long ago when some damned fool was messing around in our yard, late one night,
    and when he saw my 38, he found religion real fast!!

    • Frank of Oregon says:

      Sounds right to me, especially about finding religion. And as Joe the Plumber recently noted, if the Polish Jews had been armed, the holocaust never would have happened. Don’t let BHO and the liberals make it happen here!

  3. Will B. Donne says:

    Years ago, something like what happened to Ericcson happened to me. I was the shrimp who hung out with the athletes because I wanted to be like them, and one day they grabbed me and tied a jock strap over my head. I hated everything about them afterwards, and I hated myself as well. In time I got over it, of course, got my priorities straight, and in a very real sense, they did me a favor. For one thing, I’m no longer a shrimp. Also, I still like sports.

    The big difference is, after the age of 9 I never thought about getting a gun and blowing them away. Boys need to get over their childhood unpleasantries, learn their lessons, and grow up.

    I don’t defend bullying, of course. But there’s a distinction between a one-time prank with little harm and malicious intent and sustained persecution. Kids teach one another in all sorts of ways, good and bad. As adults, it’s important to recognize these moments and exert guidance with wisdom, not react with condemnation and blanket prohibitions.

  4. Lois Terms says:

    Sometimes I get the idea that among the gun-toters of America human life is valued less than it is in the Third World.

  5. mkhall says:

    Here is a bit of weirdness for you, Squatty. Ray Bradbury died just a few days before this story broke. As a fan of his stories, I decided to break out the books and the DVDs of his TV series, Ray Bradbury Theatre. The second episode I watched was a clever little tale called “The Utterly Perfect Murder.” The topic? A successful, middle-aged pianist who takes a carefully-planned trip back to the small town of his youth, for the sole purpose of killing the boy who had bullied and humiliated him those long decades past.

    When this story hit the wires I was a bit taken aback, as you might guess.

    • Squathole says:

      Yeah, that’s eerie. Cue the ooo-EEEEEEE-eee-ooooooooo, And it also reinforces my uncomfortable hunch that there’s but a hair’s-breadth difference between Ericsson and thousands of other people who were pushed around and humiliated as kids. (See Will B. Donne’s comment, above.) Good thing there’s plenty of guns to preserve frontier justice. even if belated, right?

    • Stan Garde says:

      I’m a big fan of Ray Bradbury, too. What strikes me is how often I’ll spot something bizarre in the news and be reminded of one of his stories. I don’t mean just crime, either.

  6. Pingback: Journalism Minus 101 | Obalesque

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