The catapult on Sunday – by Arlen van der Wall

The catapult on Sunday – by Arlen van der Wall

The catapult on Sunday – by Arlen van der Wall

The Sri Lankan Buddhist had an admirable compassion for other life forms. So the catapult became a ‘stealth’ weapon.

It had to fit a little boy’s pocket in a way that allowed rapid deployment. When the tailor skimped on material, it had to be stored inside your shirt. But that never felt right.

A cowboy with a six gun stuck in his waistband, never met the aesthetic demands of a 9 year old comic addict. You knew he was doomed.

A pult inside your shirt felt the same. Much of the pleasure of seeing fear in the eyes of the neighbourhood dogs came from a pult properly stored. When you had to venture out in your Sunday best, no matter how deep the pockets, the dogs gave you hell. Either they knew Sunday clothes or had X Ray eyes.

In these moments you shared a great emotion with the gunslinger who had to surrender his guns to the sheriff. Two empty pockets felt terrible, but sometimes your Mum compensated with a rosary. Collectively, the little beads gave the illusion that at least you were left with your projectiles.

The illusion did not reach the dogs. They gave you hell on the way home too. A quick change but you could never fool the dogs, they vanished at the sight of you.

Revenge on Sunday was never possible. No matter how hard you prayed.

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