Archive for the ‘Region Rats’ Category


This is a revised Hub I wrote several years ago. It took awhile but the Hub eventually picked up momentum & made quite an impact on its popularity (positive & negative). It was written for entertainment purposes only, but – uh, that didn’t mean it wasn’t tested. Does it work or doesn’t it…? You decide.

Homemade Banana Gum

Psychedelic; LSD Effects
It Originated in Northwest Indiana

In the 1990’s there was rumor going around in Northwest Indiana (Lake, Porter, LaPorte, Newton & Jasper counties) about this “banana gum”. And no, it’s not a name brand banana flavored product you buy at a store. This banana gum is special. Really special. In fact, it’s so special that it’s been known to cause psychedelic/LSD effects on those who are daring enough to actually chew it.

Trust me, from experience, you DO NOT want to try this.

Banana Gum Has Never Been Officially Tested

Nobody Really Knows

Since there hasn’t been any official study on banana gum, the actual organic reaction to why it gives off a psychedelic/LSD affect is still a mystery. Like most scientific experiments, the process of making homemade banana gum must be handled with extreme care & delicacy.

banana-42793

 

Banana Gum Incubation Timetable

Incubation Time
Affect on Brain
Symptoms
Before 2 weeks
no effect
none(?)
2 weeks – 3 weeks
normal effect
hallucinations
4 weeks – 7 weeks
advanced effect
hallucinations/possible insanity(?)
8 weeks – 12 weeks
abnormal effect
insanity
Longer than 3 months
unnatural effect
?

The Banana Gum Process

It’d probably be best to use latex gloves but not necessary. Before the following steps are to be taken, a well  chewed piece of gum is needed. Any type of gum will do, but gum that’s recommended by the American Dental Association is said to work best.

Dentist gum

Dentist recommended gum works best

  1. Get a banana. The greener the better (but not too green)
  2. Peel/slice the banana open, carefully & slowly remove the banana without damaging the “insane vein”. Insane Vein
  3. Take the chewed piece of gum (preferably your own) and gently…AND I CAN’T EXPRESS THIS ENOUGHgently & carefully fold it around what is called the “insane vein”. Form the gum before if you have to – just don’t fold the gum over itself.
  4. Now carefully place the banana back in its peel.
    NOTE: The less it takes to peel the banana & remove it the better.
    Try not to break the banana, if it does it’s okay, just place the piece(s) back together.
  5. Wrap the banana in aluminium foil covering it completely. Don’t spare the foil!
  6. Hang the banana at least 18″ from its stem someplace dark. Absolutely no sunlight.
  7. Please follow the INCUBATION TIME TABLE listed above exactly.

Banana Gum Stories

STORY ONE:
The Man on the Other Side of the Park

YEAR: 1994
LOCATION: Harrison Park, Hammond, IN

Under the influence of this so-called “banana gum” I decided to take an evening stroll through the park. I’m pretty sure there’s a city ordinance about being at a park after dusk, but I didn’t care. I had this urge to leave; be somewhere else, so I decided the park would be the best place.

Fortunately, the local law enforcement was never involved throughout this entire ordeal. I was lucky too because I decided to hang out near this huge, orange monument near the corner of Hohman Avenue – a common route used by the Hammond police. Not only is this monument huge, but it’s bright orange…hello? To describe it without pictures, it’s like some sort of a giant head, but done in an an abstract/artsy way. It actually looks pretty cool.

So, anyway, here I am sitting on the ledge that surrounds this huge, orange head, and somehow, I notice a person like on the other side of the park. I kept looking and though he was very, very, very far away I could see this person standing there. Was this the affects of banana gum? Super sight?

I just sat on that ledge and stared. I didn’t even move. I even slowed my breathing. I knew that it person because I noticed sometimes they would move They would move like they were about to walk away, but then decide to stay where they were at. I squinted my eyes to see if I could get a better view. By doing so, after awhile, I noticed that they checked their watch. Well, at least it was a movement that what looked like to me someone checking their watch. It was then that I thought for sure that it was man – definitely.

I watched this man what seemed like a half hour before I realized that it started to look as though he was looking back at me. After all this time, this guy finally noticed me sitting way over here – on the other side of the park. I have to admit I was a bit startled.

I sat up when I noticed that he was starting to walk towards me. He was walking to me as if he knew me. You know that walk I’m talking about…? When somebody sees you from like the other side of a large room; like an auditorium?
No?

Oh well.

So, anyway, this guy has this certain walk to him. Now, my first reaction was to get the hell up and go home. But before I did so, the closer he got to me I began to notice that he was smiling. Was he smiling because he knew me and was surprise to see me hanging out by the huge, orange head? Or was he just a smiling stranger that was about to come over and “shoot-the-shit” with me? Now I couldn’t tell if this guy was black, white, whatever, but I could tell that he was smiling.
I know.
Weird.

I decided to stick it out and wait for this guy to come over. It took awhile – like I said, he was on the other side of the park. Meanwhile, all kinds of things were going through my banana gum infested brain. My safety being number one.

man-85.jpg

He was getting closer now. I could make out that he was a white guy. He was wearing a dark suit with a white shirt & tie and dark pants. He still had that walk to him though. It reminded me of a salesperson if that helps at all with the description. It was driving me crazy.

STOP WITH THAT WALK ALREADY!

We were in speaking distance now. Who’s gonna speak first?
Me?
Him?
It was me.

“Wassup?”
This was a common greeting that was said between Generation X er’s.

“Hey. What’s going on?” he answered.

“Not much.”

He jumped on the ledge a few feet away from me. I wasn’t looking at him but I could still see him in my side vision. I forgot what that’s called – it’s on the tip of my tongue.
Forget it.

Then there was silence. You could only hear the traffic from Hohman Avenue. I took a glance at the traffic (opposite direction from where he was sitting) and I started to feel a bit awkward. It’s been like a minute or two and we haven’t said anything to each other. I tried to think of something…anything to say, but nothing. But then I heard what sounded like as if he was sliding off the ledge. I quickly turned toward him, but he was gone.

No shit.

I. Freaked. Out.
I went straight home and stayed there promising to never try banana gum again.

I should also mention that I’m not very good with keeping promises with myself.

Until next time,
James Timothy Peters

 

 

 

 

In Mysterious Ways

Posted: December 17, 2016 in Region Rats, True to Life

camera-sword

A few months ago I purchased this sword handle and what looks like a small part of the blade that has been cut off (very short) and covered with a plastic cap. However, that’s not what I thought I purchased. The picture I saw was an actual sword, in fact, it was a man holding a full length sword. But to be fair, there was another picture that went along with this Ebay item. It looked exactly like the item I purchased, but I thought it was just a closeup shot of the sword handle.

Funny How Things Turn Out

Anyway…you’re probably wondering two things.

  1. Why was I purchasing a sword?
  2. Why is there a camera in the picture with the sword handle?

I’ll tell ya.
I wanted to purchase a sword because….duh, it’s a sword. Not just a sword though. It’s a sword that’s used during the practice of Tai-Chi.

That brings a third question:

3. Why am I interested in Tai-Chi?

I’ll tell ya.
Trying to control my impatience, anxiety and anger. Not saying that I have “issues”, but I’d like to learn how to channel any negativity into a positive thing (if there is such a way).

I wasn’t expecting a sword handle – I mean, just a sword handle?
Really?
People buy those?
So I receive this sword handle in the mail and I’m like “What the hell?”
You know?

I’m pissed.
I throw the item and it lands behind a sofa in the back room.

It stays there for months.
(to be continued)

As For The Camera

I had an audition for The Onion (an American digital media company and news satire organization that publishes articles on international, national, and local news. Wikipedia) and I decided to to take my camera along to take pictures for my Pixabay account. Unfortunately though, I’d forgotten that I took out the SD Card and I didn’t replace it. So taking the camera was totally useless. I just kept the camera in my backpack. So after the audition I went straight home.

When I got home I set my bag down next to my desk and it stayed there for two days. When I went to retrieve my camera to place the SD Card back in it I couldn’t find my camera. It was gone…GONE!

I was thinking that maybe I left it on the train, but why? I couldn’t use it. I didn’t have a memory card. Why would it be out? Why would I have it out?
I wouldn’t. I couldn’t use it.
I COULDN’T USE IT!

I looked around the house “off & on” for a week…couldn’t find it.
Finally, I came to the conclusion that somebody must have opened my bag and took it. That was the only way. I know I didn’t have it out…like I said, I couldn’t use it.

It’s been a month now and I’m happy to say that I found it!

That’s right!
I found it. It was in the back room on a shelf. I don’t remember placing it there, but there it was. Mystery solved.

Now, back to the sword.

Today I went back behind the couch in the back room and got the sword handle from behind it. I started to remember how pissed I was. I shook the sword handle a little and heard a rattle. Whatever it was, it was loose and inside the handle.

To further my investigation, I shook the sword handle harder. I started shaking it even harder and even doing it in the weirdest positions. All of a sudden, the plastic cap flew off and this long sword blade constructed out of it!
WHAT THE…? No shit?

It came out in sections and was about 36″ long.

HOLY SHIT!
ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

That sword sat behind that couch for months. I had no idea that’s how it worked.

So, I found my camera and I figured out how the Tai-Chi sword works,
It’s been a good day, even though I did come in last place at the Mama’s Little Piggy Mashed Potato Eating Contest  in Hammond, Indiana.


by Alex Srednoselac Films The Perfect Date Directed by Alex Srednoselac Written by Edward Jones & Melissa Hansell Starring Mima Nova Nicole Phoebe & James Timothy Peters Crew Edward Jones M…

Source: The Perfect Date [trailer]

 

 


We all tell stories to our young ones. Whether they’re true or not; to make a point or just for entertainment, stories are important because they can be helpful. Well, I came up with a story that soon spread to all my nephews and nieces. I titled it…

The Little Boy Without a Coat

Always Put Your Toys Away

SnowStorm2014

Winter 0f 2013-’14

My nephew Julian had his toys all over the living room. He seldom picked them up on his own (if at all) so he was constantly being told to pick up his toys.

It’s not that there were toys out, but it was every toy he had that was out. To top it all off, he’s just sprawled out in the middle of the mess watching television (actually, the Spiderman DVD for the thousandth time).

One day, driving home from pre-school, he spots a little boy in the neighborhood running down the sidewalk. Now, it’s cold outside, damn near freezing, and my nephew notices that this little boy doesn’t have a coat on! Julian was beside himself! He couldn’t believe it! He just looked at me through the rear-view mirror pointing at this coatless little boy.

“He doesn’t have a coat on!” Julian exclaimed.

“I know. It’s cold outside,” I explained.

“Why doesn’t he have a coat on?” Julian asked sounding a bit concerned.

“Maybe his mom and dad couldn’t buy him one,” I added trying to tug at his heart-string.

Julian was quiet for a moment while he looked out the window. I was about to pull into the drive when asked me, “Do you think he has any toys?”

“I don’t know,” I said. I put the car in park and looked at him through the rear-view mirror. “Do you want to give him some of yours?”

I thought Julian would have said “yes”, since he sounded so concerned, but he shocked me by giving me a serious face and shaking his head “no”.

“No?” I asked him. “Why?”

“Because he’ll break them.”

I exited the car and got Julian out of his child seat. That’s when I came up with the story.

“That’s okay,” I said calmly, “people don’t need give the “little boy without a coat” any toys.”

Julian looked puzzled.

“Yeah, the “little boy without a coat” just goes around and takes other kids toys. Since his mom and dad won’t buy him any toys he has to take other kids toys.”

Julian slowly walked to the front door and listened to my story.

“So whenever you leave your toys out and if you’re not watching, the “little boy without a coat” comes and takes them.”

I started opening the front door and Julian looked up at me and asked, “Even in the house?”

“Even in the house.”

We entered the house and I could tell that Julian was still processing the story. He took off his coat, hat and gloves and walked into the living room. He saw the living room and how cluttered it was.

“Look at those toys the “little boy without a coat” could have taken, had he known they were here. Good thing the curtains were drawn,” I said to really get him thinking.

Actually, the curtain was drawn so the mailman couldn’t see that my living room was a wreck.

“Here… maybe if I open the curtains….” I started to say but was immediately interrupted by Julian screaming in terror.

“Noooo….  wait!” Julian yelled out.

“Well, I’m not sitting in here with the curtains drawn all day, you better pick up these toys,” I warned him.

He started to whimper and whine, but he slowly picked up his toys and put them away.

Julian

My nephew Julian

It may have taken him almost an hour, but he did it.

Now, the “little boy without a coat” has become my ‘GO-TO’ guy.

If you need to, you can borrow my “little boy without a coat” story.

I’d be honored.
Thank you.

 


Being part of filming BEWARE OF THE KLOWNS was one of the MOST exciting things I’ve ever done. Thanks to Tim Wolak, Alexander Hale Gibson, Rosaleah Sunserra Gonzalez and Brandon Berk.

Most of the CAST & CREW for BEWARE OF THE KLOWNS

Most of the CAST & CREW for BEWARE OF THE KLOWNS

Crawler the Klown

Crawler the Klown

Trench the Klown

Trench the Klown

Fatty the Klown

Fatty the Klown

HORROR MOVIES UNCUT

Here at HMU we are some sick individuals. Even our creator Travis Brown decided to send this teaser to one of our writers Stacey Beth who is terrified of Klowns. If anything it gave us the perfect reaction to know we had to key you guys in on this film. Browsing the redditsphere we came across this teaser for a film currently under production BEWARE OF THE KLOWNS. Yes with a K folks stay with us now. The film is directed by Tim Wolak we have the plot below picked from their Facebook page. All you need to know is there is a group of killer klowns that ain’t getting out a small car for your f**king entertainment. They want blood. Check out the trailer and we will be keeping an eye out for more news on BEWARE OF THE KLOWNS in the near future.

View original post 179 more words


Ah, the summer of 1989. A lot of good times & memories (of what I can remember anyway) were made in that year.

We were a little older, a lot crazier, unfortunately, none the wiser.
We made it through the summer of 1989, however, with nothing to show for it. All except for a fridge half-full of beer and a small canon.

That’s right. We got ourselves a canon,
but that’s a totally different story.

The fact that there was absolutely NO SUPERVISION is what made all this possible.

Summer of 1989

820 Eaton Street

Hammond, Indiana

I thought I was living the dream. Probably the dream of every 18-year-old male across the country. Well, at least maybe among my fellow “Region Rats” anyway. I guess that’s why we pretty much hung out at my house all the time. The lack of supervision made it the perfect environment for all the “Shit Starting & Shenanigans” we got ourselves into.

We had a large assortment of beer thanks to the Great Beer Heists of '89

We had a large assortment of beer thanks to the Great Beer Heists of ’89

It usually started with a garage/back alley BBQ, but things always got carried away and into the basement as the evening rolled in. By this time, most of us were already half-lit. There was always plenty of beer (free of charge). Of course, this was before the “major bust” of The Great Beer Heists of ’89.
In fact, the warm keg of Guinness spent a good portion of the summer of 1989 in my basement before it was finally moved to a new [undisclosed] location for further study & observation. A few of us would always take a crack at trying to get the beer out, but it always ended up in failure. If we only had that specific tap for that Guinness keg maybe a few us would think differently about Guinness beer.

Then again, maybe not.

Thanks to the “Boys of Wildwood” we finally did get into that keg of Guinness.

 The “48 Club”

Let’s get to the point of the story.

We came up with a competition that if completed you were made a “48 Club” member. It was called the “48 Club” and to become a member you had to drink 48 beers within 48 hours.
Here are the rules:

  1.  You can NOT leave the vicinity.
  2.  You can eat, sleep and throw-up all you want.
  3.  48 beers must be consumed before the 48th hour in order to become a member.

Flaming Shots of Everclear
(an important part of the story)

Alcohol is flammable. The purer the alcohol in the liquor, the greater chance of it igniting.
It’s very flammable. Extremely flammable.

We found out that a particular brand of alcohol (liquor?) would actually ignite – Everclear!
I’m not sure if Everclear was intended to be sipped straight from the bottle, but we did it anyway.
It was horrible.
So, to liven the party, we lit a shot glass full of Everclear on fire and drank it that way.
Makes sense…right?

Yeah, right.
Now it doesn’t only taste like shit, but it’s dangerous too.

Not sure where the idea of throwing flaming shots down your throat came from, but after a few hits & misses , some of us became rather good at it. Almost expert even. May sound like a useless skill but I have to admit, it is rather interesting to witness. If you ever get a chance to witness a drunk throwing fire towards their face, take it.

48 Beers in 48 Hours

48 Beers in 48 Hours

Sometimes, things could go terribly wrong.
Like someone lighting their face on fire.

Or, things could go hysterically funny.
Like someone lighting their face on fire.

Note: On all Flaming Shots you are suppose to extinguish the flame before you drink it.
Nobody told us about that part.

(Back to the “48 Club”)
Let the Competition Begin!

By the fourth hour of the very first 48 Club Competition, there were only 6 or 7 serious (semiconscious) applicants still in the competition out of a basement full of juvenile delinquents.

You remember Cousin Mike?
He was with me during the “Jumping & Riding Trains” incident.

He was one of them.

The McDonald Brothers.
They were with me during one of the Great Beer Heists of ’89.

They were both hanging in there also.

So, there was Cousin Mike, the two McDonald Brothers, myself and a few others.
One of those still standing was Benjie Garrison.

Benjie Garrison is an awesome bowler and already a well-known competitor among his peers and other young professional bowlers. He is very, very good. I met Benjie in high school through a few of my friends. And like myself, he lived with just his father. I remember spending many days ditching school at his house when mine was “unavailable”. We dominated Super Mario Bros. on Nintendo.

Region Rats - photo by Open Clips

Region Rats – illustration by Open Clips

My house, however, was the hub. It was a bit bigger, plus it had a basement that was equipped with a bar. The bar was nothing fancy but it served its purpose. Built in the 60’s by my grandfather, this bar has seen its fair share of shit starting & shenanigans…

…and today was no different.

Although the rules simply state that nobody may leave the vicinity of the competition, Benjie and the younger McDonald  got hungry. Since there wasn’t any food in the house and nobody delivered this late, we decided to make an exception. There was a tiny 24-hour Mexican restaurant just a block away. The infamous LAS BRISAS Mexican Restaurant was a Region Rat hot-spot.
Sorta.

Being that Las Brisas was open 24-hours a day, it too, has also seen its fair share of shit starting & shenanigans. Serving not just the sober during the day, but also the drunks, addicts and idiots during the night. If you ever wanted to test your self defense skills, visit Las Brisas anytime after 1 am and wait. Even though the Hammond Police Department was exactly kiddie-corner from Las Brisas, some knuckleheads didn’t care. Something’s going to happen…

…and tonight was no different.

Benjie and the younger McDonald brother left the house together. It’s best to go in pairs. Besides, Cousin Mike was in no condition to go anywhere. He was worse off than the rest of us. And since this was my house and he was my cousin, I was the one to look after him.

So off they went.

Las Brisas wasn’t the safest restaurant in the Region, nor was it the cleanest, but it sure had GREAT tacos! photo by KAM MISTRY

When they walked into Las Brisas they could already tell that something was not right. There were three employees, one up front, one in the back and another sitting in a booth next to the register. All three of them had their eye on a couple (guy & girl) that were waiting for their order. They looked as if they were pissed off at one another.

The employee that was up front walked to the register and asked Benjie if they were ready to order. Just when Benjie was about to speak, a loud “Fuck you!” was shouted from the girl.

Benjie quickly turned and looked at the couple, “Wow. What was that?” Benjie jokingly snickered.

The guy looked up at Benjie for a moment and then went back silently speaking to the girl looking rather irritated

“What the fuck?” the younger McDonald said to Benjie.

“I don’t know. Whatever.” Benjie said back and then placed their order.

You were to pay right after you order at Las Brisas. This prevented ‘Dine & Dash’. When the employee gave Benjie his change she quickly went to finish up the couples order and gave it to them. The couple immediately left.

Not even a minute after the couple left, Benjie heard a ruckus right outside the restaurant’s front door. Benjie and the younger McDonald went to investigate and found the guy beating the shit out of the girl. Both of them went to grab the guy and pulled him off her.

Suddenly, Benjie felt a thud on the back of his head. When he turned around he saw the younger McDonald throwing the girl a pretty good distance away. When he did, a loud clank was heard. The girl dropped a tire iron in the process of being thrown. After the younger McDonald threw the girl down he jumped on the guy and started beating the shit out of him.

Yes. This happened.

The guy was totally unconscious, but the younger McDonald kept beating away. The girl stood up and decided not to intervene. I guess she knew that it didn’t matter she was a female. It wasn’t until Benjie, when he got his bearings, that stopped the younger McDonald from beating the guy any further. They both went back inside the restaurant. The girl just stood there and continued to scream at the both of them.

The Hammond Police showed up just when they sat down to eat their tacos. It looked as though the girl was trying to explain to the police why her boyfriend was laying unconscious in a Las Brisas parking lot. She was looking through the restaurants glass, pointing to the both of them telling the police who they should be arresting. But the police never came in the restaurant and asked any questions. It seems that they just hauled the couple away to jail.

End of that story.

Meanwhile…

Back at the house, none of us knew what was going on with Benjie and the younger McDonald. This was, of course, before the readily available cell phone.

This was also when we started doing “Flaming shots of Everclear”.

Turning up the heat!
alcohol-408446_1280

Benjie and the younger McDonald finally made it back from Las Brisas.

“We got into a fight,” Benjie announced as soon as he walked down the basement stairs. “Man, we kicked the shit out of some guy and his girlfriend.”

The younger McDonald went ahead and tried to explain what happened, but with the tape deck blaring “Sweet Child of Mine” by Guns’n Roses made it a little difficult.

Before any of us could ask Benjie any questions, he was already at the end of the bar with his taco take-out. He sat with his back to us and that’s when I noticed the blood stain down Benjie’s back.

“Dude, you’re bleeding!” I shouted.

The younger McDonald went to check out Benjie’s head.

“That chic busted your head open.”

We all checked out his wound. Yep, there was a gash alright. She bashed him good.

Benjie took his last bite and muffled with a mouth full, “That bitch.” He grabbed a napkin and went upstairs to clean himself up in the bathroom.

Meanwhile…we showed the younger McDonald what we were up to since they left. Rash Key, Jay Gee along with the older McDonald brother with myself included poured ourselves a half-shot of Everclear. Each of us then lit the Everclear in the shot glass on fire.

“What the…?” the younger McDonald said looking wide eyed. “What are you guys going to do now?”

Before he realized, all four of us at the same time, threw the flaming shot down our own throat.

“HOLY SHIT! That’s fucking crazy!”

“Oh yeah?” a voice said coming from the other side of the basement. It was coming from Cousin Mike as he stumbled toward the bar. “I’ll show ya how to do it.”

Cousin Mike grabbed the bottle of Everclear and an empty shot glass. He carelessly poured himself a FULL shot spilling alcohol all over his hand as well as the bar.

“This is how you do it.”

Before any of us knew what was going on, Cousin Mike lit his shot glass on fire.

And his hand.

And the bar.

But that didn’t stop him.
Uh-uh.

Cousin Mike went ahead and was going to finish what he started. He tried to throw that flaming shot down his throat. But it was more like him throwing a fireball at his entire face than down his throat.
Oh yes. He threw fire at his own face.

So, Cousin Mike lit his hand and face on fire along with the top of the bar. I freaked out and everybody started yelling. I just started whacking Cousin Mike in the face trying to put the fire out. He gripped onto the bar with both hands (one of them on fire) and let me slap the shit out of him. The idea soon spread because everybody stopped screaming and started slapping Cousin Mike in the face.

And I do mean everybody. Like four pairs of hands.
I then threw a towel over his burning hand and put out the bar.

After a few quick moments of trying to extinguish Cousin Mikes face the fire eventually went out.
But wait a minute.

Benjie wanted some of that.

From nowhere Benjie flew into the scene. Throwing himself over the bar and with a stretch – SLAP!
He slapped Cousin Mike the hardest of everybody…and the fire was already out.
What the…?

But hold on.
This night doesn’t stop there.

Check back and find out what happens later when we come across vomit, a beer-bong & $100.

There’s Something in the Backyard

And You’re NOT Going to Believe It

Not a typical night.
Not a typical night at all.

I know this going to sound crazy, but I’m going to tell you anyway.

In the summer of ’89 I had to attend summer school in order to receive my diploma. I was short one English credit.

No big deal, I lived 500′ away from Hammond High’s main entrance. I could wake up 10 minutes before school started and still make it on time.
Which I’ve actually done.

The rules on attendance were very strict. You were not allowed to miss more than two (2) days. If you missed three (3) or more days, you were disqualified from receiving any credit for that class. NO EXCEPTIONS!

Summer Flu

I don’t sick often, but when I do…look out. I feel I’m on the edge of death when I get sick, especially with the flu – but in the summer? Who in the hell gets sick in the summer?

Oh, wait…I do now.

I used to never get sick – especially in the summer.
But of course, when I have to attend summer school, I get sick with a summer flu.
The summer flu…? Am I kidding?sick-29351_1280

I am not.

Thankfully, it started on a Friday night. Because when I awoke Saturday morning I thought I got hit by a truck. This wasn’t a hangover either (even if it was during the BEER HEISTS era)…it was death creeping up on me. I thought I might have had a touch of the stomach flu as well, because when I unloaded – man, I unloaded.

I was losing it out of both ends.
And at the same time too!
Trust me, it’s a disgustingly neat trick.

That Saturday Night

I shouldn’t have drank as much as I did the night before. All day Saturday I felt horrible. I couldn’t keep anything down. I was constantly on the toilet. I was freezing, but yet I was sweating as if I was burning up.
I was alone and I thought that I just entered the beginning stages of death.

I needed medication; some sort of medical attention, but I was clueless. I didn’t know what to do. By late evening, I realized that my dad wasn’t coming home and so I managed to gather enough sense to get off the living room floor and check the medicine cabinet.
But soon realized that we haven’t had anything in the medicine cabinet for quite some time.

I hunted through the kitchen cabinets, looking for anything that could ease my stomach and found nothing. I went for the cabinets above the stove – nothing.

Then something happened. Through the kitchen window I saw something that caught my attention. It moved across the backyard. The backyard light wasn’t on so it was hard to see clearly. It was large, stocky and low to the ground. I immediately thought it was a dog, but then I heard the rattle of the chain-link fence as if someone (or something) was trying to climb over it. Dogs don’t climb fences…do they? I tried to take a closer look, but the backyard was almost in complete darkness.

Whatever it was – it was gone now.

Later That Night

I still had no luck on finding any relief. I felt miserable. I couldn’t eat, drink or sleep. I eventually wandered into the kitchen to take another look in the cabinets. Again, I looked in the cabinets above the stove. Nothing.

I remembered that “thing” or whatever I saw move across the backyard. I moved the curtains even more off to the side and took another look. I decided to get a better look. I walked a few steps down to the landing and opened the back door. I stood inches away from the screen door and scoped things out.

There was the garage, the boat-house, the row boat…then I saw it. The street light in the alley gave the silhouette of what looked like a small husky figure wearing a horned helmet standing on the garage roof. I wasn’t sure, but it looked like it had a beard too. Before I could make ‘heads-or-tails’ of anything, it was gone. It must have ducked towards the back of the garage roof, becoming completely out of sight.

“What the…?” I said to myself. I thought, “Did I just see what I think I saw?”

I stood quietly and tried to listen for anything out of the ordinary.
But this is East Hammond, out of the ordinary is hard to distinguish.

Whatever it was, there was something definitely standing on the garage roof. Watching my toes, I quickly closed and locked the backdoor and ran back upstairs. I went to the back bedroom (which I called the “Red, White & Blue Room” for obvious reasons) and looked out the window which faced the backyard. Through this window, I had a better view of the garage roof, which I saw nothing.

Once again, whatever it was – it was gone now.

Sunday Morningcold-156666_1280

I still felt like crap Sunday morning. This was no hangover, I knew then that I was officially sick. I hardly slept because I kept tossing & turning. Not only because I wasn’t feeling well, but the thought of that ‘whatever-it-was’ on the roof really bothered me.

I know I saw a horned helmet.
I just know it.

I laid in bed and watched the sun rise and shine through the sides of the window shades. I finally got out of bed. It was 1 PM.

Yep, I’m sick.

Perfect. And I’ve got summer school the next day. Well, I might as well start the day.

I wore my sweat pants and a Hammond High School sweatshirt. I wandered out of my room and into the kitchen. I looked out the and noticed that the chain-link fence had been damaged. I pulled up my hood and got myself ready to go outside.

As I stood and looked at the fence I noticed that something had bent the chain link. It looked as if something heavy and/or strong climbed over the fence bending it all to hell.

My dad was going to be pissed.

Just when I was about to head back inside, I noticed a rather large boot print in the dirt/grass. This boot print (and several others) had tore up the grass as if someone were running through the yard. These prints were as long as mine, but were much wider.

My suspicions that I saw someone on the roof grew stronger.
Something wasn’t right.

Later that evening I spoke to Lisa and Brandy. They happen to be out-and-about with their friend Micky. I told them how sick I was, had nothing to treat it with and that I had school the next day. I wanted them to feel sorry for me – and it worked. They went to the drug store, bought me a BUNCH of stuff.
I didn’t tell them about what was going in the backyard, I figured I’d keep this to myself…for now.

Before bed, I loaded up on some over-the-counter medication and went to bed. My bedroom was at the front of the house, closer to the front yard. I slept with the side window slightly open. The sound coming from the traffic on Calumet Avenue I found soothing.

Not even fifteen (15) minutes in, I heard the chain link fence being rattled.
Once again, it sounded as if someone was trying to climb over it.
I mean, I heard it plain as day. But I just laid there with my eyes open and feeling heavy; listening to the clank and the rustle of the chain link fence. I didn’t care.

That’s because the NyQuil gel-caps I swallowed with a couple of chugs from the NyQuil bottle made it so that I was in no condition to go and investigate.

Good night, NyQuil.

In the END

I never found out what it REALLY was that was running around in the backyard. My dad never said anything about the fence being damaged when he came home a few days later. I wasn’t really sure if I should tell anyone…so I didn’t.

That is – until now.

The War Dwarf

I’ve wanted a war hammer ever since.


This story is the second part of another story that happened to me.

Well, I did it…I ran myself over!

It finally happened

I worked a late night. I drove to the boss’s house because I was going to ride to the job-site with him. He moved his van from his back alley parking spot and I parked in (backwards) in his place. It was around 9 pm.

After three and a half hours at the job site, we ran out of material and had to wrap things up. My boss drove me back to his house and dropped me off. We said our good-byes and I closed his door. I walked over to my van and I crawled underneath it to start it.PEACE

Remember…? I have to start my van underneath it.
And yes, I haven’t gotten around to fixing that ignition problem.

I grabbed the tool that starts the van and was feeling around underneath the van with it. It being dark out, I was having a difficult time trying to locate the starter. I scooted a little further underneath the van thinking it would help me find it…and I did.

At first, the van didn’t start right up. I had to do it again. The van finally started and began to accelerate slowly in reverse. I was still underneath the van.

Quickly I tried to get away, but the right front tire pinched the material of my coat, trapping my arm in place. My upper arm was trapped underneath the tire of my moving van. It was obvious that the van was in reverse. There was nothing I could do to stop it.

I couldn’t sit up, I desperately grabbed for the slowly rolling tire that was gradually crushing my bicep. The pressure was immense. I thought that my arm was going to explode. All I could think about was having to amputate my arm. My face was inches away from my vans front tire. I watched as the wheel slowly rolled over my arm. All I could do was lay there.

When the van rolled over my arm I watched as the van back over my boss’s privacy fence. It continued to roll into the backyard and came to a stop when it crashed into a tree.

My boss jumped out of his van and ran over to help me up.

“Are you okay?” my boss asked in disbelief. “Did your van run over you?”

“Yeah…my arm.”My Arm

“Oh my God! Do you need to go to the hospital?”

“No, no, I’m alright, really,” I said. “Sorry about the fence.”

“Forget the fence, how are you? Where did it get you?” he asked as he looked me over to see if I was okay.

“My arm. The van rolled over my arm,” I told him as I lifted it. It was weird that it didn’t hurt like you’d think it would. I mean, it was sore but strangely enough it didn’t bruise.


The Shit We Pulled

Part of the “Shit Starting & Shenanigans” Collectionrailroad-54350_640

Being a 15-year-old male in “the Region” was an exciting time for me; being a policeman’s son, sometimes made it that much better.

I was daring, reckless, maybe a bit of an idiot.  Some may even say that I was a complete lunatic, but whatever it is you’re told, they’ll also tell you that they’ll never forget the shit we pulled – I made sure of that.

Jumping and Riding Trains

My two cousins (Mike & Bill) and I got this crazy idea about jumping and riding trains, we thought that it be a great way to get around – you know…free transportation!  The problem with that idea was that these trains didn’t go anywhere we wanted to go, so jumping and riding them was pretty much pointless and a waste of time, but we didn’t care; we jumped and rode them anyway.

PART ONE – COUSIN MIKE

One of the first incidents that almost went horribly wrong while jumping and riding trains was with my cousin Mike.  Mike and I talked and planned about jumping a train that carried brand new (tough built) cars from a nearby auto plant.  We thought that we could hop a train car that carried these new cars and then take the radios out of them.  I’m not sure what we planned to do with the radios once we got them…we didn’t plan that far ahead.

I mean, it’s not like we knew anyone that was in the market for stolen, factory built car radios…and besides, we never got that far anyway.

It was mid afternoon when Mike and I decided to head out towards the train depot.  Neither one of us have ever taken out a car radio before so we weren’t exactly sure what tools to bring – so we brought hammers.

Yes. Hammers.

Not the first tool of choice for most thieves.

These weren’t your typical claw hammers either, no, these were the odd looking mechanic hammers…the hammers with the ball point at the back instead of the usual claw.  Yeah, this was our tool of choice for such an operation, according to our calculations, we figured hammers would do just fine.

Oh, did I mention that this was our first time doing something like this?

…hammers are terrible tools to use when trying to steal a car radio. 
James Timothy Peters

mechanic-hammer-24230_640Our tool supply came from our grandfather, Grandpa Schreier (Mike’s mother and my mother were sisters and Grandpa Schreier was the father).  Grandpa Schreier had an ample supply of tools.  Masonry tools, carpentry tools, drafting tools, levels, ropes, chains, hooks and a single car garage filled to the rafters with wood.  He had a room in the basement/workshop that was totally dedicated to doors and an old bomb cellar dedicated to ladders.

When I asked my uncle why Grandpa had all that wood in the garage, the response was “In case the house burns down he’d be able to build another one.”

The Door Room: A room that is dedicated to just doors. It is filled with interior & exterior doors; closet & bedroom doors; French doors, Colonial style doors, &c.  Whatever door you may need…Grandpa Schreier just might have it.

The Ladder Room: An old bomb cellar that Grandpa Schreier built under his front porch, surrounded by brick 12″ thick (minus the entryway).  It may not have been able to take a direct hit or withstand the radiation from a nuclear blast, but you sure felt like it could when you stood in it.  After the bomb scare in the 1960’s, the bomb cellar eventually became the new storage place for all 30 of his extension ladders.

There was an opening in the chain-link fence of the train yard that was just big enough for us to squeeze through.  We brought along a pillow case that we took from our grandmothers linen closet.  We carried our hammers in them on the way to the train depot and we were going to use them to carry our car radios on the way back.

Everything was coming together.

As we crept through the hole in the fence and through the high brush and tall weeds, we moved slowly and made sure we weren’t spotted.

Now that I think about it, Mike was wearing all white.  A white tank-top; white shorts & boat shoes.  The perfect outfit for a stealthy operation such as this.

Luckily, a train carrying these automobiles was just on its way out of the train yard.  It was going so slow you could walk next to it and still keep up.  It was easy to hop on…very, VERY easy to jump and ride this train…almost too easy.

We quickly climbed on board and hid until the train made the turn at the bend in the gully.  We stayed hidden and made sure that none of the “yard guys” saw us.  As soon as we made that turn in the bend we went to work.

I instantly jumped up and ran next to the car that Mike was looking at.

“This is how you do it,” I said to Mike as I slammed a hammer against the car door window and smashed it.

“What are you talking about?” Mike said back. “That’s the back door.”

Wow.
He was right.

“Alrighty then,” I answered back.
So, as casual as I could make it, I went over and smashed the front door window.

We looked at each other.  He looked at me as if I were crazy; reached over and opened the door by the handle.

There was no need to smash the windows – the doors were unlocked.

Oh well.

I jumped in the car and went to town.  I smashed the shit out of that dashboard with that hammer trying to get at that radio.  I got it down to the metal…damn, all I needed was a Phillips screwdriver.  If I had that, I would have gotten that radio out a lot faster.

Oh yeah, that’s right…I got it out – with an ugly looking hammer.
And Mike got his out of the car he was in with his.

It was time to go.
We stuffed those two radios in the pillow case and when I was about to hit another car I heard Mike say something that changed everything.

“Jimmy. We have a problem…look!” Mike yelled as he pointed outside.
Mike was standing where we climbed on.  I walked up to where he was standing and looked out.
“The train picked up speed!”

Oh my God.  It was flying.
At the time, I would have said we were going 50 mph easy, but maybe now that I think about it, it was going about 25-30 mph – tops.  That may not seem fast, but try saying that while hanging on the side of a train.

We didn’t know what to do.  Things started to speed up.  We’re like “Okay, okay…be calm.”  Then we’d look out the train again and saw a sign that read GARY, as in Gary, Indiana.  We needed to get off and get off fast.

We got our thoughts together and decided to get rid of the evidence.  We’ll toss the hammers and the pillow case full of radios off the train and then if things go right, we’ll come back and pick them up.
Good idea.

We went to the other side of the train and looked out.  There was just another set of tracks and a huge field.  I tossed the hammers first.  I tried to toss them gently and tried to remember where I tossed them, but it didn’t matter.  I tried to toss them over the other side of the other set of tracks but I missed.  Those hammers hit those tracks so hard they bounced right underneath the train.  So much for those.

Mike tossed the pillow case of radios off the train and when they hit the ground, the whole pillowcase exploded.  Those two radios flew into pieces.

So much for our BIG score.

I thought Mike was going to bounce underneath the train just like the hammers.

I thought Mike was going to bounce underneath the train just like the hammers.

We had to get off this train because we’re headed for Gary, Indiana… and that doesn’t mean it’s going to stop in Gary either. With our luck, we’d probably end up in Ohio somewhere if we didn’t do what we did next.

Mike thought quickly and came up with the idea of hanging on the side of the train and try to run with it – while still holding on to the train.  When he thought the time was right, he would let go and just gradually slow down from running on his own.

At the time, it sounded like it’d work…
but it didn’t.

Mike took about three or four HUGE running steps and started somersaulting head-over-heels right next to the train.  His boat shoes flew off in opposite directions.  He had to have flipped six or seven times before veering off away from the train.

I had to have been at least 40-50 yards away before Mike came to a complete stop.  He stopped in a patch of sticker bushes just to make matters worse.

“MIKE!” I yelled out from the train to see if he was all right.  I saw him pick his head up and his arm signalling me he was okay.

I hung from the train like he did and decided that this was NOT for me.  I climbed back in the train and decided to just run and jump off.  That’s more my style.

I landed; rolled a little bit; jumped to my feet and ran over to see if Mike was okay.

Guess what?
He was a bit bloody, but he was okay.

PART TWO – COUSIN BILL

To be continued.


I will never ask the question: “How in the HELL can you run yourself over?”

If you’re guessing where this is going – you’re correct…
I almost ran myself over.

I nearly ran myself over!

I know what you’re thinking, “How can you run yourself over?”

It’s a little tricky, but it can be done!

I understand how it happened, I just can’t imagine what would have happened had my van actually ran me over.  If it wasn’t for my “cat like” reflexes and my keen “sense of aware“, I might have gone to the hospital.

I know, I know… whatever.

CLICK HERE

CLICK HERE

But if you’re interested in reading on HOW & WHY it happened, then by all means – please, continue.

Early one morning…

I was opening Lauers Pub in Calumet City, IL and decided to park directly in front of the tavern.  When I came to a complete stop, I turned off the ignition before placing the gear in park.  Quite simply – I forgot.  The van was off, but it was still in drive.

This is what it looked like before I had it repaired.

This is what it looked like before I had it repaired.

I know what you’re thinking, but before you decide that I must be FULL OF SHIT, let me just tell you that my van was once a stolen vehicle.  And in order for them to steal the van, they had to pop its ignition.

So now, that safety feature that disables any vehicle from starting if it is NOT in park…yeah, that feature has been disconnected in my vehicle and will now start in ANY gear (even reverse).

Needless to say, I jump out of the van and continued on with my day not realizing that I had not put the van in park.  So it sat IN GEAR for half a day.

When it was time to go, I dragged ass back to the van and used a screwdriver to enable the starter/ignition.  I crawled under the van and used the same screwdriver to jump the starter.  This is when everything went wrong.

When the van started it instantly took off.  If it wasn’t for my “cat-like” reflexes, this day may have ended on a more serious note.  Luckily, with my self-taught ninja skills I managed to roll out of the way of the out-of-control van.  Rolling from underneath a moving van while against a 6 inch curb was a bit tricky, but again…because of my athletic ability, I managed to avoid running myself over.

I sprang to my feet and started running after my van down the street.  Fortunately, it turned towards the curb and jumped it.  When the van hit the curb it slow down considerably making it possible for me to open the passenger side door and jump in.

The van was now heading towards a fire hydrant and I still wasn’t able to stop the van – just steer it.  I quickly turned the steering wheel to the left to get back on the street – missing the hydrant by inches.

When the van rolled down from the sidewalk onto the street, I jumped over to the drivers seat and was able to take control.PerfectlyNormal2a

I slammed on the brakes and took a minute or two to gather my thoughts.

Did that just happen?

I got my shit together and turned the van around.
While I was doing this, I noticed an old lady standing on her porch looking at me shaking her head.

You’re welcome, lady.
You’re welcome for the entertainment.

WANT TO READ PART II? CLICK HERE!