by Nnenna Josakweker
I’m Curly…pfff. You all know who I am and if you don’t….what am I saying? Is that even possible? Nope and you know why? Cause’ everyone knows Curley; The best or let me look for a better stage name. The “Bullet,” yeah that’ll do. I’m as fast as a bullet. I always win the fight. Nobody dares to look for my trouble. They know too well I fight like the tiger. I’m the boss’ son. The Man with the fists of steel and I sure know how to use them. But that was before that BIG BEAST LENNIE CRUSHED MY HAND. OH MY! I am going to kill that son of the devil! I don’t care whether he is dead or alive. He must go to hell! He killed my wife!! Who the hell did he think he was?!I wonder, before he killed her, if he remembered whose wife she is! She’s not just anyone’s wife. She is Curly’s, the son of the boss of the ranch, heir to the ranch’s, wife!
I am tougher than all the guys on the ranch, apart from that big ol’ Lennie! If that slug Slim hadn’t come and made me swear to not tell anyone or my pride would be tarnished, I would have told her what really occurred that day. What that giant meatball really was! She would have stayed clear of him. It wouldn’t have had to end up this way. She there and me here… Now look at me; no wife and disabled. You think I love the way I am? With my father’s rank, you would think so but actually I don’t. I don’t like fighting. But that kinda helps me escape me; the small, hurt, useless Curly; now known as the mean, tough Curly.
I wasn’t always mean, loneliness made me this way. I had no friends both at home and at school back then. I don’t think anyone would want to be my friend now. I used to hear jokes like “Aren’t you like an inch away from being a midget?” or “How’s it going down there?” when I was a kid. It was never funny. I got bullied way too much. I was picked on in the school yard just because I had no one to fight for me. I remember one time in 5th grade, when this kid in my class; he was called the “Bull,” bullied me. His friends called him that because he was the biggest kid in the school and the meanest. He pushed me in the middle of the playground and everyone was gathering and cheering for a fight and I the small frail kid could do nothing but stand there and hope I could go home with at least one eye to see that day. He hit me once, twice, my hands were dangling by my sides, and I could do nothing. He was twice my size. As if that wasn’t enough, his friends joined in and no one helped me, you know why? Because I had no friends; nobody. My mom usually used to say, “Don’t pay evil with evil. Be the better man.” I tried but that didn’t always work. She was the only one that held me and treated me like a human, which was before the accident that took her away from me. Dad started talking about how I am a disappointment to him. I have grown up feeling unloved and a shame. With all the lack of attention in school and at home, you can’t blame me… Yeah I am short but that really isn’t the thing. The problem all started after my mom died. When she was alive, my dad gave me a bit more of a listening ear. We used to play outside. The game I loved the most was called hide and seek and whenever I found him, he’d give me a dollar as my reward. My mum on the other hand would make me give it back to him because she said he needed it more than I did. She was strict but I loved it and very reasonable. I miss her but now she’s gone and so is he. He barely listens to me. He always said he had things to do. Am I the cause? Or mum? Or is he really busy like he claims he is? I really don’t know…I miss him. I really do. Now he prefers slim. He wishes I were more like Slim… Slim this, Slim that, I am sick of hearing that crap all the time!! Now I am not going to be the bullied kid rather the bully. The only thing I had that none of the rest had, not even Slim was a girl. Someone I could show off with to the other guys but then that bastard, Lennie had to go ruin it for me didn’t he? He killed her; my pride, my bride. The only friend I had. The only person I could have to myself. She was the reason I could walk around with my head held high. We fought all the time but still she was…my wife and I could say that to anyone. To Slim, to George and even to that messed up retard, Lennie. She was real pretty…mhmm…And I felt proud walking around knowing that everyone knew she was my wife. I really loved her but the mistake I made was not showing that to her. Real men don’t show their feelings. That’s what I live by but I was stupid enough to apply that even with my wife who was supposed to be an exception. But she’s gone now….. And I can’t take that back.
I act as though I’m tough and I go after the big tough guys like Lennie to show that I ain’t scared of nobody but that still is not of much help. I need a friend. I never had one and would love to know how it feels to be a friend and to have one but nobody understands me. I am always the bad guy. The one everyone looks down on. No, I can’t be seen as that. I’ve been pushed way too much and I ain’t gonna let that happen no more. I can never get my wife back. I can never get the simple human need to find a kindred spirit. To connect and to know in my heart that I’m actually not alone, that I actually have someone. Right now, I just gotta figure out how to avenge my wife and uhm….clean up this mess on my face. Don’t want anyone seeing me like this. This is the part of me no one can see…I’m starving. Crooks…Crooks….HEY CROOKS!! GET ME A SANDWICHH! OH YEAH AND A BEER NOW! MAKE IT FAST!!