Mark is what you would call a bully. He’s big, even for a fifth grader, and he likes to make fourth graders like me turn red in the face in front of all his friends. I’ve seen what he’s done to other fourth graders and have learned to stay away from him. I do this by hiding in the farthest corner of the field by where the fences meet and the trees drop a bunch of leaves on the ground. I usually sit there during recess and lunchtime, watching out for him and his gang. I know if they found me they would make jokes about me, or maybe even try to pick a fight. Grown-ups say that bullies are bullies because they don’t know how else to express the feelings that they have. Why couldn’t they just play football or something?
Anyways, this one day at school I had a really close call. It was about the middle of recess and I really had to go to the bathroom. I didn’t usually go back toward the classrooms until after I heard the bell ring, but I was scared I might have an accident and that everyone in the fourth grade would make fun of me once we got back to class. I quickly walked past some kids playing football, and then some kids playing basketball once I got to the courts. I didn’t see Mark and his friends anywhere, which made me glad. But when I opened the door to the bathroom I heard Mark and one of his friends giving some kid a swirly. They were in the big stall at the far end and didn’t know that I was there. Like I said, I really had to go, so, without making a sound, I went up to one of the empty urinals and went pee (I didn’t even unbutton or unzip my pants because I was afraid they might hear). Then I waited for them to get to the part of the swirly where they flush the toilet, and when that happened I flushed at the same time and ran out as quick as I could. I walked back out to the corner of the field where the fences meet, sat down, and waited until the end of recess. It really was a close call.
Just so you know, I washed my hands in the drinking fountain on the way back to class. I wouldn’t want you to think I’m dirty or anything.