We lived in an older neighborhood when my brother and I were growing up. One summer day I found myself left to my own devices. I was in the backyard and our neighbors’ grandsons were visiting. They called me over to the chain-link fence between our yards.
Smirking at each other one of the boys challenged me to a fight. I was only a girl, he said. I didn’t stand a chance. Surprised but up for a challenge, just not a fight I noted I was standing next to a small tree, maybe 6″ around, so I said he’d better not mess with me, I could pull that tree right out of the ground!
When they finished laughing bully boy put on his game face again and balled up his fists. Grabbing the tree I yanked with all I had. I landed hard several feet away, tree in my hands.
Little tough guys stood gaping at me a few seconds. They practically knocked each other down running the other direction.
I’m still looking at this tree that, for its size was amazingly light. I walked over to where it had come out of the ground and saw it was crawling with ants. Completely rotted.
Laughing, I looked up to yell, “hey, it’s a dead tree!” knowing the joke was on me.
They were gone. My bravado worked and no fists were flung.
Just as well. They never bothered me again.