Long, long, ago, in a decade far, far, away, there was an annual battle that rocked an otherwise quiet neighborhood. It was the annual Super Soaker wars of the McNeslonHuberMuir Clan.
As I think back, I do not remember how this annual get together originated. The first time this group of family made an appearance at my newly build home was for a sod laying party. If you have laid sod, you know the last thing anyone wanted to do at the end of the day is play games.
I do think that the sod laying party did lead to an agreement to meet once a year for a barbecue and drinking party in the newly sodded back yard!
It was during the first summer time barbecue in the back yard that a Super Soaker war broke out. Like anything traditional, the first one was an impromptu affair. A couple of kids running around with the smaller Super Soakers, an adult soon becomes collateral damage. The adult steals one of the kid’s weapons. Then naturally, that adult cannot pass up the opportunity to squirt yet another adult. Soon, you have everyone running around soaking each other down with high-powered water guns.
All the while, the old folks are on the deck yelling, “You better not shoot me!”
There is a good chance one or two of those gray hairs were the victims of “friendly fire”.
As the games progressed, we created rules. Most of them on the fly by winded middle aged men.
- No shooting someone who is refilling, or waiting to refill.
- There is a safe zone for beer bellied middle aged men could rest. Again, no shooting them while in the safe zone.
- No squirting anyone going into or out of the house.
- No hiding in the garage and the garage is not a weapons free zone.
- Don’t shoot the old folks hiding out on the deck.
Rules are no good without consequences. Since it was a game, we needed a punishment that was suitable, but deterred users from violating the rules, yet kept the game fun. The solution was a firing squad. I don’t remember who came up with the punishment, but it became far more effective than I imagined it would be.
We lined the perpetrator up against the basement sliding glass door. All available Super Soakers came to bear. On the command “Fire!” everyone unleashed a torrent of icy cold water.
I witnessed this punishment a couple of times before experiencing it myself. As a witness, the punishment seemed pretty innocuous. We were all wet to begin with, so what was a little more water. Well when it was my turn to face the firing squad, I was surprised at the level of trepidation I felt.
I even winced a little when I heard the command. I would have been a fool if I did not close my eyes. A dozen over powered water cannons released a torrent of water and hit me like an icy cold fist. Every one of them was unleashing the water they just loaded from my garden hose. The temperature of that water was probably less than sixty degrees. The force of those streams was impressive, especially when teamed up with a dozen more streams.