Author Archives: Wilson Knapp

Quazi Minono

Behind a kickball field in Pasadena, there is a house that belongs to an old lady that all the kids call Quazi Minono. She lives in the house directly behind the tall fence at the back of the kickball field. Whenever Garret and his friends play kickball, they never go to retrieve their ball if someone kicks it over the fence. It is said that a boy climbed over the fence one time to get the ball and the old lady Quazi Minono killed him. Apparently, no one has ever seen what Quazi Minono looks like or exactly how old she is. However, she has a husband, or what the kids believe may not be her husband, who everyone can see because he sits in his wheel chair on the third floor of the house constantly peering out the circle window that faces the kickball field. He sits facing out the circle window for most of the hours of the day without ever moving. It is rumored that the old man sitting in the wheel chair is actually the kid who Quazi Minono killed. Instead of killing him, she kept him prisoner in his house. He can never leave because he has a full body paralysis. So, he sits almost all day staring out the window wishing he could leave and play kickball again. Garret and his friends never ever go over the fence to get the kickball.
Most likely, a killer old lady does not live in the house, and the man in the window is her husband enjoys looking outside instead of sitting facing a wall all day. It is sad to think that kids can think up such a scary story for the situation the old man is in.

Little Willie mean as hell, threw his sister in the well, mother said when drawing water, “Gee it’s hard to raise a daughter.”

Will’s grandparents would watch him and his siblings when his parents went on trips. Whenever Will would act up or do something wrong, his grandpa used to say to him “Little Willie mean as hell, threw his sister in the well, mother said when drawing water, ‘Gee it’s hard to raise a daughter.’” When his grandpa would say this to him, it was a sign of disappointment. It was a way of making Will feel bad about whatever he had done wrong without actually getting angry with him. Will would protest and say that he wasn’t mean, and he would try and disprove his grandpa the first few times his grandpa would say the phrase to him. There were other versions of the saying that Will’s grandpa used to say to him, but he can’t remember exactly what they were.

Baseball superstitions

John and his team had certain traditions and superstitions for baseball. One of the biggest superstitions was to never touch the chalk lines when running onto field to get in position. It was bad luck to touch the chalk lines, and it was known to bring misfortune to the player and the team.
Whenever a player was designated to be the pitcher for the upcoming game, the pitcher would have to get to the field exactly two hours before the game started to get ready. The pitcher and one of his teammates would then warm up with a drill they called two ball. They would toss two baseballs at the same time using both their left hand and their right hand to the other person who would have to catch both baseballs. The notion behind showing up two hours before the game and practicing hand eye coordination with the two ball drill was that it significance of two. In order “two” win or in order “two” beat the other team, they needed “two” work twice as hard as the other team.
In addition, when it came to the actual game, each batter would perform a ritual with their bat and the home plate. Each player, before he batted, would touch his bat to the top right corner of home plate, then the top left corner, then touch the middle of the plate. This ritual was performed in order to create a better chance that the batter would reach both ends of the field and then return home.
Even though these traditions and superstitions did not work every time, the players still would follow them because they just might mean something.

You Are My Sunshine

As a morning ritual before school days, Cat’s mom would always come into her room to wake her up. Since Cat was such a terrible morning person, her mom would try and perk her up by singing the song: “You Are My Sunshine.” He mom would come into the room singing You are my sunshine, my only sunshine, you make me happy when skies are gray, you’ll never know dear how much I love you, please don’t take my sunshine away. Every time that her mom got to the line “love you,” her mom would pull off Cat’s covers to lovingly force her out of bed. Because her mom would pull her covers off every day on the same line, Cat would clutch onto her covers as strong as she could to try and thwart her mom. However, every day Cat’s mom would always succeed in waking her up to go to school. They performed this ritual every school day morning from Fifth grade through senior year of High School.

Cool Plays

Charlie and his cousins would play a game they called Cool plays. The game was a mix between baseball and football. There would be two teams of four, but if there was one bigger person (and generally there was always one kid who was a lot bigger than everyone else) then they would have a team of five and a team of three (the team of three would have the big kid). The team on offense would stand out a little past half the field length, while the defense would stand a third of the way to half field. One person on defense would stand a third of the way from the end zone with a bat, while one person on offense would stand a few feet away to pitch the ball. The special thing about Cool Plays is that the ball is a basketball-sized tennis ball. The pitcher would throw the ball with one bounce at the batter, and then the batter would try and hit the ball as far as he could. With a successful hit, the people on offense would try to get the ball to the end zone without being tackled by the batting team. If the offense made it to the touchdown, they got three points. However, if the defense tackled the person with the ball before they got to the end zone, the defense got a point. Each person on defense bats one time before they switch sides. The team who gets to ten points first wins.