Summer will be over before you know it

Growing up summers in the woods of Georgia was actually quite cool. The lushly verdant landscape in Georgia in the 1970s made for perfect afternoons of exploration.

My brother and sister and I spent a lot of time traversing creek beds, climbing trees, pushing each other into ponds (and, once, out of a tree) and poking at things with sticks. And poking at each other with sticks. I would offer a belated apology to my sister, but her eye healed quite beautifully.
When my mother had enough of hosing the mud off the back porch, she took us to the library, a bastion of air conditioning that healed the pattern burned into our thighs from the vinyl seats of our Subaru station wagon.
Actually, now that I’m thinking about it, summers probably weren’t that cool at all. But as kids, we didn’t care about mosquitoes, soaring temperatures or sweaty clothes. We worried about sunburns, swimsuits and how long until the ice cream truck rolled back through the neighborhood.
Oh, to be a kid again.
With summer here and the humidity beating us about the head and shoulders, it’s time to throw off the trappings of adulthood and play hookie from maturity.
It’s time to find a swimmin’ hole, a Popsicle and a stick to poke things with.

Here’s a guide for you.

Things You Can Poke With a Stick
1. Your siblings, but not their eyes
2. Your spouse’s heinie — fun!
3. Bugs
4. Non-venomous snakes
5. Dead things
6. The television controls, and other buttons
7. Politicians
8. Meat (then throw it on the grill!)
9. Ant hills
10. Austin Rhodes

Things You Cannot Poke With a Stick
(This list goes to 11!)
1. Artwork
2. The James Brown Statue
3. Strippers
4. Police officers
5. Your coworkers
6. Children
7. The homeless
8. Wild animals
9. Except rats, you can poke them
10. Your boss
11. Except Metro Spirit editor Tom Grant: you can poke him. (Web Exclusive! Click here to send him a poke by e-mail!)


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