Alan Meyer went to public school with a tough hombre named Teddy Phillips. Teddy’s dad had deserted his family when Teddy was five and he was brought up by his Mom, Lois and his older sister Joanne.
Teddy showed anti-social behaviour on a regular basis as he was constantly trying to beat up kids during recess. Alan once overheard a teacher saying to another teacher that Willy was ‘’a poor maladjusted.’’ Alan had no clue what that meant.
All the kids were somewhat terrified of Teddy and did everything they could to avoid him, Alan included. In Grade five, Alan was friends with a girl named Janice Hankins. Teddy came over during a conversation Alan was having with Janice and grabbed him from behind, putting his hands around Alan’s neck. Alan reacted by using a move he had seen that previous Saturday afternoon on television while watching wrestling. He lowered his shoulder and flipped Teddy over him. Teddy hit the floor hard. The teacher saw everything and yelled at Teddy for starting trouble. As Teddy was being sent to the principal’s office he looked over at Alan. ‘’I’m going to be waiting for you after school and we’re going to have a fight.’’
Fighting after school was dangerous, who would be around to break things up? When the bell rang to end the school day Alan ran through a sliding door, through woods to a side street and home. This was repeated for about two weeks before Alan was able to convince Teddy during a gym class that he was his friend and fighting would be stupid.
In High School, Teddy’s Mother started working for a store called ‘’Shoprite.’’ This was perfect as Alan’s Mom loved to shop and soon she and Mrs. Phillips were on very good terms. Teddy started to come up to Alan in the hallway to pass messages from his Mom. ‘’My Mother said to tell your Mother that Shoprite is having a big scratch and dent sale starting on Friday. If your Mom wants to come in on Thursday, my Mom will show her the stuff and she can have first chance to buy it.’’ Alan thanked Teddy and moved on as quickly as possible.
One day, Teddy was standing at his locker and grabbed Alan ‘’Listen, I know you call me Teddy, but that isn’t cool. People just call me Ted, so from now on my name is Ted, not Teddy, okay?’’ Alan nodded and once again moved on. He couldn’t have cared less what…