Wednesday, December 8, 2010

~~~MAGPIE #44~~~RB Red Racer Sled

Behind the cold steel fence Jimmy could only stop and stare dreamily about sledding. He watched with great anticipation as a group of boys proudly walked their brand new RB Red Racer Sled up the steep neighbourhood hill.

The RB racer sled was everything Jimmy ever wanted, at least for the last two Christmases. Each year he would ask his parents for the sled, but each year his parents would say "Maybe next year, Jimmy!" Jimmy did not care that it was too expensive for his parents, or that he was still abit too young for the challenging sled. He could sing the song backwards;

"RB Red Racer Sled RB Red Racer Sled, the Faster Racer...On The Hill!" RB Red Racer Sled, RB Red Racer Sled, RB Red Racer Sled"

For many hours Jimmy would watch the other children screaming with tantamount pleasure. As the children would go up and down the hills for hours on end laughing wildly with glee while sledding with wreckless abandon on the Old School House toboggan hill.

To Jimmy it seemed that everyone had a RB Red Racer Sled. Most every child did have a new RB racer. Jimmy did not seem to mind feeling left out of his seemingly simple request for Christmas. He knew that sooner or later Santa would bring him the sled, he just had to be patient.

Today, Jimmy could not stand it any longer, he would be bold. He had to prove to himself the RB Red Racer Sled was everything it was cracked up to be "and then some" Jimmy would alway say to his parents. He absolutely must try the new sled, he felt, to see if it did, in fact, really did go as faster than a jet airplane. The commercial on the radio said it would go faster than anything!

Jimmy would run to the bottom of the hill before the others started to head for the hill early Saturday afternoon. Jimmy was hoping someone would ask him to join them. No one ever did. Jimmy sighed and thought;

"Maybe I should go home, I'm starting to get cold."

With much hopeful anticipation and naive anticipation Jimmy would ask one of the popular boys of the Ladbrooke Road Gang "Can I play with you guys?"

"Hey, Spike; did you hear that? Jimmy wants us to play with us! Jimmy wants to go sledding! Hey guys do want Jimmy to sled with us?" With a quick sarcastic bite "Why don't you go ask your mommy to get you a sled for Christmas".

All Jimmy had wanted for at least the last two Christmases was a brand-new RB sled racer. For Jimmy, that seemed an unlikely request, Christmas would not be the same since his father was laid off from the glass factory.

"No! the boys said in unison, the sandy-haired boy piped in "Yah, go home and wash your dirty dishes!"

Jimmy started to turn his back and sadly walked away. "Thump" Jimmy felt the full wallop of an icy snowball to the back of his head. Jimmy turned around "Hey!" Before he had a chance to feel the throbbing pain decided to "Vamoosh" his favourite word lately. It seemed to be his Dad's favourite word too, and Jimmy took awhile to figure out exactly what it meant when he was told to do the same often.

As the obnoxious gang began running after him, Jimmy tried to use every trick in the book, every tactic possible to deflect any harm. Jimmy knew this did not feel right, that he better get heading home.

Jimmy started running as fast as he could, which was not fast because he was dressed in full snowsuit gear. The old fashioned and overstuffed overboots functioned similar to walking on the moon, slow as molasses in January.

A recurrent dream had been haunting Jimmy lately. Often he dreamt of being chased by boggeymen in little red UFO's. When he looked around him, he felt everything was happening to him in slow-motion, he had nowhere to hide. The gang looked like alien life form, and acted like it too.

Jimmy felt a return to the frozen part of the nightmare the part when he was unable to move a muscle while the aliens crept upon him. Plus he had the added bonus of an upset stomach. "It must have been the Ovaltine" thought Jimmy.

His holey old hockey socks would always bunch down at the ends of his boots creating a very uncomfortable and audible squishy feeling. The effects of being cold and sweaty besides the awkward need to explain his stinking old popcorn feet to him Mom was over-rode by the dangerous numbness he noticed and the bluish tinge starting to threaten to frostbite his feet.

Like a hungry alligator, Spike aggressively grabbed Jimmy by the back of his snow pants, trying to find the wedgy area. Being a size too small, Jimmy was lucky, Spike could not give him the dreaded wedgy; not today anyway.

Spike determined to drag him up the hill by his snowsuit straps. His mother would not be happy as one strap was torn clean off his pants. The other boys followed laughing wildly. "Ha-Ha". Jimmy felt terrified and started to cry.

"Remember you said you wanted to go sledding? Well you're goin' sledding!" Spike yelled out to the other boys; "Hey BB, Get the rope out of the knapsack".

Jimmy soon realized that the boys were no longer headed towards the regular run. Spike had decided to walk through the woods towards The Bluffs, the highest and most dangerous hill in town.

As soon as Jimmy realized what the dastardly crew were up to he began screaming "Noooooo, Help...Help..." to no avail, they were far from earshot.

It was late afternoon by now and it was getting a lot colder as the sun was beginning to set. Jimmy's eyes were wide with terror.

"Here you go little boy, you're finally going to get to try out the new RB sled" Spike's yellow eyes slanted to pinpoints as he tied him face-first onto the sled. "We'll make sure you're going to have an exciting ride". With that Spike, BB, Mikey, Fang and Bulk started to push with all their might the young Jimmy down the steep hill.

It was getting close to midnight. The police had been scowering the area since early evening. There was no sight of the little boy anywhere around the hill. Jimmy's mother and father were frantic waiting at the bottom of the hill, praying for their son to magically appear before them.

An officer yelled out to his Captain "I think we finally found something, Sir". With flashlights the police could make out a distinguishing feature on the ice covered pond. "I think it's says RB Hed Racer".

Late in the evening on the Old Schoolhouse hill in mid to late December, a small voice can still be heard on the biting winter wind singing an old familiar song;
"RB Red Racer Sled, RB Red Racer Sled, RB Red Racer Sled the faster racer ever!"



  1. RB Red Racer Sled....wants YOU to write a poem, prose, short story, novel, dissertation, tome, whatever, Just do it! Here;

  2. nice the end did really well with this one...

  3. wait a minute...what the hell happened? This just doesn't feel right?

  4. What happened is that Jimmy
    flew through the midnight darkness
    and sliced hard into legend, into
    a tale told every holiday, into
    a heartache and a sad smile.
    Terrific prose piece, Jane.
    Made me sad, but I admire
    the wordsmithing.

  5. oh poor Jimmy, and your story started of so innocently, a tense read, and such a sad end.

  6. Sad. Kids can be as cruel as their elders. Well written piece that brings a cry to my heart!

  7. Jimmy should have stayed home...poor Jimmy...bkm

    I love to listen to Sade...every time I visit of my favorites..bkm

  8. Beautiful story, despite the sad end! Loved reading it! Thanks for sharing!

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  10. OH, SO SAD! Well done, you brought a tear to my eye. Poor, poor little boy.

  11. This was such a sad tale and, all too often, we see this type of thing happen - with very few consequences. Heartbreaking, really.

    Mine is at:

  12. Terrific write... pains of longing over the sled, but wait, one hill and he's ...??? Nicely done.