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Ponietz

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Member since: Thu Jun 28, 2018, 06:04 PM
Number of posts: 2,425

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I was chased by a Nazi and saw him get punched

In 1972, I was 11. I loved life, knew everyone in the neighborhood, played in the streets and parks whenever school was out. Everyone knew me—I was always knocking on doors to sell little league raffle tickets, do yard work, or collect on newspaper subscriptions.

The kids would play touch football in the street after dinner and knew to avoid the yard of our ex-Nazi neighbors. The wife would call the police if the ball went in her yard. The grown daughter was a recluse who always wore army surplus. The father was a German scientist relocated here at the end of WW2. There was no animosity amongst my pals but the wife’s behavior was a joke. This family wanted to be left alone and we didn’t bother them. I already knew half the lesson.

One summer afternoon I was walking home and happened to look behind me. The father was walking quickly toward me, 100 yards or so behind. It startled me so I quickened my pace. I looked again and the man was running now. It terrified—I ran and jumped a wall leaving him behind.

My mother and father came home from work. I stayed near their closet until they arrived—still hysterical. Inconsolable.

Did I mention my father was a Marine? Saipan, Okinawa, Nagasaki occupation. Coolest cucumber I ever met. All he said was, “Is everyone ready to go out to dinner?”

We all got into the station wagon. “Where does he live?” he said.

We parked at the curb and, though I didn’t want to, had to come with him to the Nazi’s door. The Nazi answered. “My son tells me you chased him today”.

“Yeah, look here!” and the Nazi crosses the threshold to point to his window. It had a BB hole in it.

I was joyful in my innocence. “I didn’t do it! I wanted a BB gun for Christmas and you said no!”

“He says he didn’t do it”

“I don’t give a shit what your son says!”

It all happened so fast but in an instant it was Clay standing over a fallen Liston. My father had dropped the guy with one punch. He towered over the Nazi whose nose now bled, and told him if he ever came near me again he was a dead man.

We returned to the car. I was triumphant. The matter was dropped. In that moment I understood the whole lesson:

Don’t provoke Nazis but when they cross the line they must be punched in the face.





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