Growing up, my brother and I were pretty good kids. We did as we were told, got decent grades, and didn't fight too much. At least, there was no physical fighting. We never hit each other or even had very many real disagreements, but we did enjoy verbally needling each other with the worst insults we could think of. We could (and did) do that all day long, much to my mom's chagrin.
Since cussing was forbidden in our house, we couldn't just call each other an "assbitch" or a "shitbrain" like most siblings do. We weren't even supposed to say "shut up" because my dad thought of that as swearing. So we were forced to be a little more creative, and looking back, my parents should have just let us cuss. Then they'd have probably been spared all the offensive crap we came up with instead, like blasphemy.
For some reason we got into the habit of constantly telling each other that Jesus hated the other one. Man, that was fun. I can't remember why it started. Probably because we both loathed church, particularly the Sunday school my mother dragged us to every week. I especially hated that class, and would spend the entire hour arguing with and haranging the teacher with all sorts of sacrilegious questions.
"Why should I worship God when he was such a jerk?" I'd rant. "I mean, look how he treated poor Job? And turning Lot's wife into a pilar of salt just for daring to gaze back at her home was way harsh. If you think about it, why should anyone fear the devil? He never killed anyone, unlike God who would happily smite entire villages just for not praising him enough. It seems to me that Satan was the unsung hero of the bible for being the only one who refused to put up with God's abuse of power!"
I'm sure that teacher detested me.
Anyway, my brother and I came to really enjoy trading blasphemous insults. One of our favorites was telling each other that Jesus hated him. This had the added bonus of upsetting our mother too.
"Hey, guess what? Jesus hates you."
"Jesus called. He left you a message," we'd say while sticking up a middle finger.
"Guess how much Jesus hates you?" Spread arms wide in crucifixion pose. "This much!"
Poor guy, probably doesn't find that joke too amusing.
My mom, who was quite the churchgoer back then, was horrified.
"Stop it right now!" she'd hiss at us, looking around nervously as though worried that God would strike someone dead for our heresy. "Don't say things like that!"
Naturally that just egged us on more.
We then took to making up songs about how much Jesus hated the other one, usually sung to the tune of whatever cheesy song was playing on the radio at that time. I've forgotten most of them, but I do remember one he sang about me that went like this:
Sung to the tune of "Sussudio" by Phil Collins
There's this girl with a flat behind
who's stupid all the time
p-p-pruudio oh oh
Now Jesus don't even know her name
but he hates her just the same
p-p-pruudio oh oh
I retaliated with this:
Sung to the tune of "We Built This City" by Starship
Well Jesus really hates you, especially your face
and God himself agrees, that you're a big disgrace
Knee deep in the hoopla, you make them want to puke
all three of them together - Father, Son, and Holy Spook!
But our hands down favorite thing to do was question each others paternal heritage, which we did constantly. We loved to speculate on what sort of disgusting mutant had raped our mother in order to produce such a freak. A typical exchange would usually go something like this:
"You have a butthole in your chin."
"So do you."
"No, mine is more of a handsome cleft. Yours is definitely a cavernous butthole, and it's also slightly off center, which points to especially low quality breeding. Your father was most likely a mouth-breathing carnie who raped mom at the county fair."
"Well, your father is obviously a dwarf. Or possibly an elf. Or maybe both. You were probably conceived from the sperm of a hundred little people when mom was gang banged at a munchkin convention. You are a dwarf elf and this is your theme song.
Slightly under 4 feet high
with a ruler for a nose and three glass eyes
so hideous he'll make you cry
it's Dwarf Elf! Dwarf Elf!" I'd sing.
"Oh yeah," he'd counter. "is that what the voices are telling you today? It's so sad to watch your mental deterioration as the schizophrenia slowly overtakes your brain. It's inevitable, you know, since mom was raped by that demented guy who covers himself in tin foil and impregnated with you. Soon you'll be joining your real father down at the supermarket parking lot, babbling to everyone who walks by about how the CIA developed killer bees in a lab while trying to assassinate Castro. You are already starting to grow some bitchin hobo whiskers just like your pop. And once he makes you your own tin foil hat you'll be the spitting image of him."
If my dad happened to overhear one of these exchanges he would get upset. Although not, as you might think, at the suggestion that he wasn't our father, or that his wife had been gang raped by various trolls and lunatics. Instead he would be pissed off at the cussing.
"Did you just say the B word?" he'd yell. "Go to your room right now!"
My parents got used to these daily exchanges, I guess. We never really got in that much trouble for them. Except for this one day when we drove our mother over the brink.
I can't remember what we said that set her off. I'd like to think it was the time I told my brother that the real reason Jesus hated him was because God came down from Heaven one day after getting drunk on sacrificial wine and raped our mother while disguised as Phil Collins. And because God's sperm had been contaminated with Phil Collin's DNA, the resulting child - my brother - was a dwarfy idiot with bad musical taste and a propensity towards early balding, whom the angels referred to as Jesus 2: Electric Boogaloo.
"Look Jesus," they'd elbow him and smirk. "Here comes your retarded brother lil' Jesus "Shabba Doo" Shrimpstone. Wow, you must be so embarrassed to be related to that spaz!"
I'd like to think it was that one that drove our mother over the edge, but I can't really remember if it was or not. But lemme tell you, I'll never forget what happened next.
My mom, who must have been in the laundry room, came charging into the kitchen where we were washing the dishes while taunting one another, screaming angrily at the top of her lungs.
"Stop it! Stop it at once! I can't stand it anymore!" she shouted, her face the color of a tomato. "You children are horrible! Absolutely horrible!"
Then she snatched up a damp dish towel and began flogging us with it while screaming about how horrible we were.
That was a bit surprising because she'd never smacked us before, but not really alarming. The wet towel slaps didn't hurt much. No, the really alarming part was that she did all of this while not wearing any pants! No underwear either, just totally naked on the bottom. She was wearing a shirt, though.
I guess she'd been doing laundry and thrown her pants and undies in? Whatever the reason, it was really disconcerting to have her yelling and smacking us with towels while her furburger was totally on display. We were pretty shocked.
And when I say furburger, I mean it literally. It was obvious that my mom didn't believe in using a razor down there. Her bush was positively sasquatchian.
(I know sasquatchian is not a real word. I just made it up to try to describe the hairiness of my mom's pubes. It did kinda look like she had Bigfoot in a head lock.)
My poor brother didn't know where to look. "Mommy, please put on some pants!" he pleaded, while trying to shield his eyes.
By that time she was in a frenzy and kept whipping us with the towel and yelling that we needed to be taught a lesson, and she was going to tell our dad to beat us with a belt when he got home.
Like I said, it was shocking. My mom was usually pretty modest. Not that she'd freak out if you saw her undressed, but she was never one to walk around naked or anything, especially not in front of my brother. We just stood there open mouthed and gaping, unable to believe what was happening.
Then, just as she began winding down, the absurdity of the situation struck me and I started laughing my ass off, which made my brother lose it too. Our laughter fired mom up again and she grabbed another dish towel so she could double flog us as we rolled around on the floor laughing.
"How....dare....you....disrespectful....horrible...." she panted in between whippings. I honestly tried to stop and get a hold of myself, but every time I looked up and saw that giant bush in between her petite little legs staring me in the face, I lost it again and cackled even louder. My brother laughed silently, shoulders shaking and shaking until he hiccuped.
"That's it!" My mom finally screamed. "Get out of my house, both of you! Get out now! I don't want to see you again until you learn some respect for God!" With that she threw the towels at us and stalked off. We got up to leave, but the sight of her angry little bare ass wiggling as she marched up the stairs set us off yet again. By the time we made it outside to the driveway we were clutching our stomachs in pain.
You know how it feels when you laugh so hard you kinda strain your stomach muscles? And it starts to hurt really bad, but even then you can't stop laughing? That's the kind of pain I'm talking about.
We spent the rest of the day outside on the grass, blaming each other for driving mom insane and bursting into fits of uncontrollable giggling that nearly made us gag, until she called us in for dinner. My mother seemed to be over it by then and never referred to the incident again.
If you ask her about it now, she claims not to remember ever doing anything like that and claims I'm making it all up. I know I didn't hallucinate this, though, because anytime I feel like needling my brother all I have to do is hum a few bars of the Primus song "Winona's Big Brown Beaver" while he's taking a drink. He ends up spitting and choking every time.
My mom has never understood why we nicknamed her Winona. She thinks this song is dumb.