Paddy had always enjoyed clay pigeon shooting. In fact, he was something of the local champion. His nine-year old son, Charlie, was a great help too. Charlie would sit in a ditch on the farm and pull the clay pigeon trap, shooting the clay pigeons into the air at different adjusted angles and heights. Paddy would stand back at quite a distance and shoot each clay pigeon as it suddenly flew unpredictably into the sky. Paddy practiced clay pigeon shooting usually a couple of times a week.
On this particular occasion young Charlie had just over thirty clay pigeons to fire into the air. His father missed hitting only two of them. All the others were successfully blown to smithereens.
When he ran out of clay pigeons to fire into the air, Charlie popped up from the protective ditch to tell his father that the clay pigeons were all used up, and quick-reflex Paddy blew his son’s head off.
Oh to think! A world famous group of sports men and women were visiting from another country. The host country wanted to give them a taste of the domestic home life in the host country. Each sports person was billeted out to a different family. The Smith Family were to host Vlad. He was an Olympic Gold Medallist in Cycling.
Sam Smith, the son of the host family, was over the moon. Vlad was his hero. Oh but what a disappointment! Sam Smith couldn’t be home for the night that Vlad was to stay. His mother would get an autograph – and give a blow by blow account of how things went.
“Dear Sam, Vlad has come and gone. I’m afraid your father rather let us down. Our guest brought a bottle of vodka for us and your father decided to show how much he appreciated the gesture by drinking it all. He’d never touched vodka in his life. Then he started singing some rather bawdy songs he knew from when in the Navy. Terribly out of key, and then singing his own words to the Song of the Vulgar Boatmen. I was glad you weren’t there; you would’ve heard words you wouldn’t know existed. It was a relief, when before we’d even sat down to dinner your father went off to bed. He was out to it. Vlad seemed to enjoy his meal; in fact he seemed to enjoy the whole episode judging by his laughter. It was such a pity he couldn’t understand English, but I suspect he didn’t need to.”
William’s father was mad on sport. So since the day William was born, his father pushed him, pushed him, pushed him. William was pushed from one sport’s event to another.
William hated being pushed like that. He got used to it. And he loved his father. His father made him sit and watch the football on television, providing drinks and potato chips. His father made him sit through the basketball, and hockey, and golf. Even a five day cricket match. For his fourteenth birthday, he gave William a special sport’s blanket to snuggle into when he watch sport in the lounge. He said, “I always wanted a son who was into sport. You’re the dream kid.”
All said and done, William didn’t overly mind, especially the drinks and chips. And he knew his father loved him, and his father made it fun. But he hated to be pushed.
One day, suddenly, William’s father dropped dead. There was no one now to push him. William sat in his wheelchair and bawled his eyes out. He loved his father. He needed him.