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Name That Trauma :: Reader Bracken on a Grade School Gang Gutting

September 12th, 2011 by aunt john · 1 Comment

Is there anyone else here who has a recollection of seeing an After School/Scared Straight type T.V. program from around 1980-ish that ends with a boy being stabbed in the guts and bleeding to death in the street?

When I was about 10 or so (around 1980-ish) my grandmother made certain that I was home from school so that I could watch a late afternoon television movie about the down side of falling in with the “wrong crowd” (you know what road “good intentions” paved.) The kid in the story was playing baseball/softball/stickball with some friends and hits a homerun that smashes through the window of some gang members’ hangout ruining their pizza. The gang kids then track down the ball player and stab him to death in retaliation for nailing them with the homerun ball. My recollection is that at the end of the movie, the kid who has been narrating the whole thing is lying in the vacant lot holding his bleeding stomach (I also remember the gore being very explicit–his guts might have been hanging out) while repeating, “I don’t want to die.”

The program was followed by a documentary on the making of the show detailing how at least a portion of the script was written by gang kids who had been invited to help develop the cautionary tale. It didn’t make me afraid of gangs or baseball, but it started a lifelong interest/obsession/recurring nightmare with belly cutting.

Got a title? Any ideas?

Thanks,

Bracken

AUNT JOHN SEZ: Bracken, your Name That Trauma induced some serious déjà vu as I think it is the same After School Special reader Shane wrote in about a little whiles back. Readers, please help us kill two birds with one stone and sound off in the comments!

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1 response so far ↓

  • 1 TaylorNo Gravatar // Sep 12, 2011 at 3:39 pm

    “The kid in the story was playing baseball/softball/stickball with some friends and hits a homerun that smashes through the window of some gang members’ hangout ruining their pizza.”

    This made me laugh. If there’s one thing gang members love, it’s their pizza…The only thing that could make a gang member stabbier than when his pizza is ruined would be someone bumping the couch so their thumb slips on the controller sending Mario skidding off of the Rainbow Road into space.

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