Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Tanner 1: Grandpa Tanner

Since it will take a few weeks to write the history of the Parkinson (20/21) and Bryant (22/23) families thanks to a Stapley family history forwarded by a distant cousin, here is an anecdote from Grandpa Tanner's early life for all his great-grandsons who are starting school (and will certainly be avoiding this kind of adventure).

All of the recesses for a full week or 10 days in the first grade were taken up with what you would call an elimination contest.

You were challenged, and you either became a mamby-pamby sissy if you didn't participate, or you participated in a round-robin elimination tournament-of-sorts wrestling match. And you wrestled somebody and somebody wrestled somebody else and somebody wrestled somebody else, and everybody challenged anybody they wanted to challenge. And finally you established a pecking order, all the kids that you could lick and all the kids that could lick you, and knew where you stood.

And I was big and I was strong, and especially I was strong, and I whipped everybody. The one person that I had a problem with was a boy by the name of Benjamin Brown, Jr. And Ben Brown, Jr. gave me fits, because I easily wrestled with him and got him down and ready to say—you made them actually say, "Uncle." That was the ritual. When they said, "Uncle," that was admission of defeat, then you let them up, and from then on you didn't bother trying to whip that kid.

When I got Ben Brown down to say, "Uncle," he was not about to say, "Uncle," and I put a hammerlock on him, and he reached over with his fist and clobbered me right in the nose. And that was against the rules, the unwritten rules. But he hit me about three times and we got up and we had a bloody mess until he finally said, "Uncle," but I respected the fists after that.


  1. Funny story Amy. Thanks for sharing it.

  2. i think my favorite part is when he says, "but i respected the fists after that."

  3. These grandpa stories are great!