My First Whupin

by Mick Lindley, Feb. 2002

    When one of the children in our neighborhood got into trouble he was called into the house by his mom. When he came back out we immediately wanted to know, "Didju git a whupin"? I guess it stemmed from the fact that we wanted and needed to know just what a kid could get away with.

    My family moved from Winston county Alabama to Birmingham in 1951. We didn't own a car so my Dad borrowed an old truck from my Grandfather for the move. He found work at the steel mill in Ensley and luckily could walk the few blocks to work.

    It was a few years before we could afford a car so my Mother and I rode the bus to town or any other place we wanted to go. It was on the bus where I got the first "whupin" I can remember. It was common to see children getting a whipping in public. No one thought anything about someone disciplining their kids.

    As we were riding along in the bus I noticed people were pulling a cord above the windows when the bus neared their stop. As they pulled the cord a bell would ring alerting the driver. I sat there as long as I could while thinking what lots of fun that would be. Finally I couldn't stand it any longer, so I stood up. It was common for children to stand up in the front seat of cars or buses. Mom or Dad would throw their arm in front of you to try and prevent you from hitting the dashboard in a sudden stop. As soon as I thought my Mother was not looking I reached up and pulled the cord. The feeling I got from stopping this giant bus was one of achievement that I will never forget. The bus driver got the bus stopped looked back and patiently waited for someone to get off. Of course no one came, so off we go again. After riding along a few blocks I remember wondering "can I do that again"?  Again I stood up and when I thought my Mother was not looking and pulled the cord. The bus stopped again and no one got off. This time was different. Mother's have eyes in the back of their head, she had seen me do it. She promptly said, "don't do that again, or you'll get a whipping".

    We rode for several blocks as I sat there with my eyes fixed on that cord. All the while remembering how good if felt to stop the bus. I could stand it no longer so I stood up again. This time I was going to be even more sneaky, or so I thought. I stood there a long time never looking at the cord. Again when I thought she wasn't looking I reached behind me and pulled the cord. You know the rest of the story, "I got a whupin".

   The bible says to honor your Father and Mother. It's a good idea.