One day I thought back to how fun it was as a relatively young boy to pop caps, from the red strips of paper that had little holes and dots of gunpowder in them to the colored plastic ones that came with certain toys. Memories flew into my mind about cap guns and the kind of poppers that are thrown onto the ground to make loud sounds when they explode upon impact, and party poopers (oops, that’s supposed to be “poppers” but the typo was so funny—at least to me—that I decided to leave it.)
As luck would have it, these memories came to me when I opened a package that contained air pillows to protect an item that had been shipped…
Now when my young grandson Thomas visit he says “hi” to “Mama” (Heidi) then runs into my office, yells “PAPA!” with his arms outstretched for me, as I turn in my chair and yell “Thomas!” just as loudly. He crashes into my outstretched arms with all the subtlety of a tornado and we give each other a big bear hug. Thomas then looks around for the stash of air pillows he knows I’ve saved for him.
Most of the time the air pillows are attached to each other like a roll of caps. He’ll grab the narrow end of the first one and I’ll grab the other end of it, then we’ll look at each other, nod, and yell, “ReadySetGo!” as we begin squeezing to try to pop as many of them as we can as fast as we can.
The first time we did this, when one didn’t immediately pop, I squish-scrunched my face as though I was giving it all I had. Thomas thought I looked hilarious and immediately began copying me. Now, as we look at the funny faces we’re both making, we roar with laughter.
Most air pillows pop fairly quickly, with a wonderful loud bang. That gets us cheering! Pop! POP! Pop-pop! PFLLLFTTT!!!
PFLLLFTTT?!?! A dud! The first time that happened, Thomas looked at me for a second, wondering what happened, then a huge smile broke out on his face and he exclaimed, “It FARPTED!” I played along and yelled, “OOOOHHHH! STINKY!” Now the duds are our favorite ones and they all seem to create their own unique version of the sound of gas being passed. Each one gets us roaring louder than the one before, with versions of “That’s a BIG one!” “Did you do that?” “No, you did!” and the like being shouted whenever we can catch our breath from all the laughter.
I suspect that his Mommy and Mama are less than thrilled with some of these goings-on but, they are wise, and let their boys be boys.