Pork Chop was smarting over an unfortunate encounter with the runt that lived down the street. Peanut was helping him evaluate his performance.
Turns out, telling another guy he fights like a girl isn't appreciated.
Pork Chop was getting up to throw Peanut on the ground, but his sister, Bertha, took exception to the comment and beat her brother across the room.
I don't think Peanut saw her foot move until it swept the back of his knee. As he landed on his backside, Bertha pounced on top of him, flipped him over, dug her knee into his back, and shoved his right arm in a chicken wing before he could grunt twice.
Once he was helpless, Bertha gave him a little scratch on his neck, grabbed his hair and pulled it hard.
"Kick, scratch, claw, pull hair -- you boys think you're sissies if you fight that way," Bertha said. "That's how girl's fight. If Pork Chop fought like a girl, he wouldn't be licking his wounds now."
Peanut yelled a few demeaning insults at Bertha and then said "uncle."
After turning Peanut loose, Bertha glared over at me. I had always thought she was cute until that moment. For once, I was a smart boy and kept my mouth shut. The Groves family is a highly charged group.
Ever since then, when I hear the term "fight like a girl" I look over my shoulder for Bertha.
That term is posted underneath the email signature of one of my friends. She and her family have helped me a lot over the years. In fact, I never would have been elected to public office without them. I'm highly confident that I could stop her from putting me in a chicken wing, but I've never pushed it.
I got a call from her a while back. She wasn't in much of a mood for our usual lively conversation about politics (she says Sarah Palin is great and I throw up).
"Listen," she said. "I want you to hear it from me that I've got breast cancer."
I hated hearing that almost as much as she hated saying it. This cancer stuff really ticks me off. It scares me too. I've had too many friends and family who've had their bodies ripped apart by it or worse.
The day before my friend had surgery to eradicate the cancer, her husband was diagnosed with esophageal cancer. The next day, he was at her side after her surgery both of them joking about losing their hair together.
After her successful surgery, she began chemotherapy. He started radiation and chemo treatment to shrink the tumor before they performed surgery on him.
I stopped in to see him a few weeks later after his successful surgery. He was asleep in the hospital bed. She was curled up under a blanket in the chair next to him. Neither had hair, his head shiny and reflecting the light, hers covered by a bandana. There are a lot of courageous acts in this world. A husband and wife fulfilling their vow of love in sickness and in health is one of them.
I wiped the tears welling up in my eyes before they woke up and saw me. Brave people those two. They're gonna fight together. They're gonna win.
When it comes to cancer we all have to kick, claw, scream, hit, and fight without giving up. The disease is a wretched, wicked beast. It effects one out of three people. You can list ten folks effected by cancer in sixty seconds or less. I know you can.
It takes great strength to beat this beast. A lot of these cancer surviving warriors will be on hand at Dellinger Park on September 11. That's the day (and night) Relay for Life is holding a walkathon to raise money to fund cancer fighting research.
The goal is to raise $300,000. It hasn't been reached yet so you have an opportunity to do something worthwhile and join the fight. There will be over 100 teams walking and having other fundraising activities going on to reach this goal. The cost for a team is only $100 and the more teams, the merrier the event. Find out more information at www.bartowrelayforlife.org.
Before that happens though, plan to eat some bar-b-que and listen to the Etowah Jazz Band down by the creek at Freddie Gunn's place. Festivities begin late Saturday afternoon. That's August 14.
Freddie's place is on the right up highway 41 north just past the hospital. He'll have some signs out so look for them. If you cross the creek you've gone too far. The food and music are free. The donation is $20. It helps to make your donation in advance, but if you can't make early arrangements, Freddie will meet you ate the door with a hardy "thank you sir or ma'am" and take care of you.
So, I'll see you this weekend at Freddie's and again on September 11, at Dellinger Park. Bring your wallet. Things really worth doing have a cost.
The folks you are helping are warriors using whatever means necessary to win their battle.
They fight like a girl.
Mike Fields lives in Cartersville. His mother-in-law and her only sister died after long illnesses that started with breast cancer. His sister-in-law is a breast cancer survivor. He has a wife, two daughters and supports breast cancer research