In recent days, there have been quite a few screaming headlines - and an angry outcry - over bullying.
The issue has triggered a few childhood memories (as usual).
I was an "A" student, pretty down-to-earth and easygoing in nature, and popular with the girls (with the boys, too, I was later to discover) so - of course - I was the target of a couple of bullies when I attended a grade school in Agincourt (a suburb of Toronto near the 401 Hwy).
For example, one kid (who was actually quite handsome) often took a poke at me - or gave me a slap on the back of the head - whenever he spied me on the street or in the schoolyard.
I was a bit of peace-nick, and not a fighter by any stretch of the imagination, so I often ignored the bullying.
Unfortunately, one fine day, "Norris" jabbed me in the chest a little too hard - and for some inexplicable reason - I struck him with a back-handed slap across his face.
An automatic reflex, I suppose.
Within minutes, the startled big bruiser was sporting a horrific shiner (black eye).
On that day, I became the local school hero!
In fact, after that incident, one of my teachers - Mr. Walters - began to refer to me in class as one of the "Golden Boys".
Curiously, in spite the humiliation Norris was served up that day, he continued to get rough with me occasionally when I least expected it.
It wasn't until years later that I realized that the poor kid was probably a latent homosexual and that that was his way of getting "close" to me.
What do 'ya think?
Love, attraction, and passion sure manifest in strange ways, eh?