I was just thinking about how cruel people can be at times especially during those years between ages 5 and 18. I think we've all known a bully or two in our lifetimes or perhaps we, ourselves were that bully. During Junior High School (it still seems weird to call it Middle School now) we had a definitive way of knowing exactly where each of us stood in the grand scheme of things and in the hierarchy of popularity. I was always fortunate enough to be a social chameleon during those years and to fit into whatever group I was around at the time. I have to shamefully admit I participated in bullying in a passive aggressive way by helping pigeon hole people. The aptly named SLAM BOOK was without a doubt a way to express all those things we otherwise might never say out loud directly to someone we disliked...or liked. The times were masked by a cloud of peace and love and were perfumed with the aroma of incense and marijuana, so calling someone out after school to roll around in the gravel to settle a dispute was no longer deemed as cool. A version of Mean Girls 1960's style was quickly developed to take its place. Today, I hear the internet is used in much the same way.

Maybe the before mentioned SLAM BOOK was just a Maine thing or a Bangor, Maine thing, although I doubt it. I believe the concept was far reaching and as I think about today's bullies, I can't believe kids don't indulge in something as creative as a SLAM BOOK or do they? Is that what all the social networking websites are used for by the youth of today? Is it a way of stalking, bullying and being a rotten, unfeeling bitch or bastard to unsuspecting, undeserving, defenseless individuals?

For those of you who are scratching your heads and wondering what in the world I'm talking about, let me enlighten you. Quite simply, to create a SLAM BOOK all it took was a notebook...preferably a spiral notebook. A sign-in page was kept separate from the notebook and was always kept in the possession of the creator of the SLAM BOOK and no one else. Each person was assigned a number whereas to keep their identity a secret. Anonymity was a crucial factor for a great SLAM BOOK. Once a person had a number then the object was to go through the book writing how you truthfully felt about each person and any topic listed. It looked something like this:


Mildred needs to take her meds
on a regular basis and stop
acting like such a lunatic!
The next time she comes at me
with her enema bag, I'm going
to knock her into next week.
(love you, Mildred!) XXXXOOOOO


  1. I feel your pain.....

    Muffy Love

  2. Muffy, I was one of those likeable stoners in school who was friends with everyone. What I lacked in looks, I made up for in attitude. Like so many others that age, I never thought about how my actions effected people. I have dear friends from way back then who I'm still friends with...why? I can't exactly answer that since I spent most of my life teetering on the edge and pushing people away. I guess they loved me and saw something in me that I never saw in myself and for that I am deeply grateful.

  3. Wow. I mean, WOW! Who knew?

    If we had those here, I knew nothing about them. I'm a few years older than you, so in my day, fights after school ruled. along with degrading nicknames and untrue rumors.

    I would never, I mean NEVER want to be a kid again. EVAH!

  4. You is kind; You is smart; You is important. (The Help)

  5. Jnuts, you really never heard of a Slam Book? I don't remember ever writing anything mean about anyone because there were so few people that I disliked (mostly authority figures). In hindsight I feel bad for promoting a tool that caused others pain. Just another dumb kid I was (still am in many ways). I wouldn't go back either...maybe to 35 or so, but only if I could stay there!

  6. "The cruelty of men is as wonderous as Peru"

    Nothing makes me angry more than cruelty

  7. "At the top of the hole sit the privileged few,
    making mock of the vermin in the lonely zoo,
    turning beauty to filth and greed...
    I too have sailed the world and seen its wonders,
    for the cruelty of men is as wondrous as Peru
    but there's no place like...grade school!"

  8. I never saw a slam books in school (being an outcast and all), but I'm sure they existed. Jeez, I'm glad middle and high school are over.

  9. Ur-spo, how does one distance oneself from the cruelty that is all around?

    Jnuts, I'm not familiar with the quote you and Ur-spo used, but it's very fitting.

    Ahab,I know I never though I'd be thankful for being old.

  10. mildred: the quotes are actually lyrics from a song in Sweeney Todd: "No Place like London."

    as for distancing oneself from cruelty...hermitage, sweety, hermitage...and drink. I kid...sorta.

  11. Jnuts, the hermitage works pretty well and since I have liver disease without drinking, I don't think I'll push my luck or maybe I should! LOL

  12. it's really not fair that you have liver disease without the drink. I'll do the sipping for you...even though it's a no no with the diabetes.

    as for the limerick. I'm not really good with those, so for the time being I'll just offer a favorite old standby.

    There once was a man from Kildare
    Who raped an old maid on the stair
    One his twenty-first stroke
    The bannister broke
    So he finished her off in mid-air.

  13. Jnuts, very little in life is fair, my friend. I love the limmerick...great mental image!