Features — 20 August 2013 — by Charles X

The ad has been on Krem Radio for months now. This morning, my daughter finally accosted me, “Daddy, is that true? Did you guys really want somebody to beat up your little brother?”

She was referring to the oft repeated ad for “Colin B. Hyde’s book.”

My immediate response was, “Well, not really. Of course not; but you know, sometimes there are angles to a story.”

I later dug up a few lines I had scribbled privately on the matter a while back. See below:

Thurs. June 13, 2013

In the advertisement promotion for Colin B. Hyde’s book, “Growing up in Old Belize,” they say his big brothers “wanted to find a boy to beat him up.”

I read the book also, and enjoyed it. I learned many things that I missed as an older brother growing up “in Old Belize” with the said Colin B. Hyde as my little brother.

I was there on that memorable day, when my older brother “Bumble Bee” (Stephen) and his school friend “Gippo” (either Gilbert or Stanley Gibson, I’m not sure which) suddenly departed the scene, and I was left watching as a bold and aggressive youngster approached a bewildered Colin and declared, to no one in particular, in a challenging tone, “Atta hihn kyan beat me!”

Colin was taken aback, obviously, but he didn’t back down or back off. He stood his ground, and they stared at each other, neither venturing to initiate hostilities.

At school, older boys are always eager to spur feuding youths into action, encouraging them to “knock out di bomb and touch di man” in order to get a fight going. Nobody “held a bomb” for the two would-be combatants, Colin and “Gee” (as I later learned Gippo’s little brother was called) to “knock out” and begin the war.

In fairness to “Galem” (one of Colin’s early nicknames), he was on somebody else’s turf, like a dog far away from his yard, and the would-be opponent was a complete stranger. Gee had obviously been prepped for battle; but ‘Lem was caught completely off guard.

I certainly didn’t, and I am also confident that “di Bee” didn’t want or expect “Gee” to “beat up” our little brother, Colin. Rather, I suspect it was an exciting way to settle an argument between di Bee and his friend Gippo, as to whose little brother was the better warrior. In fact, I would think that di Bee, as I was instinctively feeling when the situation developed, would be “riding” hard with little brother “Lemwell” (another of Colin’s early nicknames) to conquer the adversary.

It’s just one of the games that children play.

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