Dirty Joe

There was the one odd kid in school, no one really knew him and I don’t think anyone wanted to. He was kind of a… idiot if you would. His name was Dirty Joe, literally no joke his full name was Dirty Joseph Levingstine and every time it was back to school the teachers would always flips because of his name. There was one time I remembered when a teacher asked him “What kind of name is that, what could you have possibly done to get a name like that?” and really a lot of kids asked the same thing but you don’t have to do anything wrong when you have parents like his. Sadly there was a lot wrong with his parents, his dad was raised in a house in which out of a child’s mouth would be called “The Dump!” His father seemed like one of those people who were dropped on their head a lot when they were young. His mother was raised basically the same way except her house would be called “The Mental Hospital”.
Dirty Joe was given his name when he was born in in a barn, poor little Joe came out and his father dropped him in a pile of horse excrement rolled down the hill of stink and into a pit of food waste. His dad wanted to call him Trash Joe but his mom said “No! We have enough of that around here.” So they decided on “Dirty Joe” because of how dirty he got the day he was born. The reason I know all of this is because he told me and we have grown to become friends over the years and despite all the weird things he does at times he can be a very nice person, but by looking at him you couldn’t tell.
The first day I ever met Joe was the first day of middle school. Honestly I did not want anything to do with him, mostly because nobody wanted to. Anyway I met him when I was waiting for the bus at the bus stop and I was talking to some friends that I hadn’t seen sense fifth grade until… I smelled something; the smell was rancid, kind of like a dead opossum that nobody had bothered to do anything about. We looked around looking for a dead animal until we found the source of the smell, it was not an animal, and it was not a dumpster… it was a kid, my friends walked away while I stayed because I got caught up in an awkward conversation with him and his stench. The very first thing he said to me was “Howdy!” just by that simple word and how he is dressed I could tell he was white trash, he wore baggy pants with holes and dirt on them, white T-shirt with grass and dirt stain (which I hope it was grass and dirt), a flannel jacket with the sleeves cut off, and sandals. Grade “A” white trash is the first thing that came in my mind; of course I said hi back to him but then he started talking non-stop about all of this weird stuff like his pet snake, his birth mark that looked like a squirrel, and his pet snake that he found in his trash can when he was ten years old. I didn’t get to say anything because he kept talking on and on blowing his horrible breath in my face.
Luckily I was saved by the bell when the bus came to pick us up, I told him the bus was here so he stopped talking and started heading towards it. When I got on the bus I was walking through the aisle and there were cards with our names on there telling us were to sit, I sat in my seat hoping that I finally got away from him, until… I saw him walk down the aisle, he was looking for his name and thank god he past my seat. The bus started to move but Joe could not find his seat, the bus driver told him to sit down, he finally found his seat but unfortunately for me we sat in the same seat together. The whole ride to school ended up with him talking the weirdest things you would ever hear out of a human beings mouth. Just when I thought his stories couldn’t get any creepier he started talking about his foot fungus, thank god that we were finally at school and it was time to get off the bus before he could say anything else. I try not to be a jerk but I couldn’t help it I was only eleven years old and I have never met anyone as bizarre as Joe.


The teachers getting the kids off the bus told us to go straight to our home rooms and I had math class with a teacher named Ms. Johnson. I made it to the class room with two minutes to spare until I looked over and there was Joe sitting in the front row, fortunately my seat was far from his “Unlike the bus” I said humorously in my mind. When the bell rang the teacher immediately called roll. Everything seemed to be going well until... “Joshua Latell, Brandy Limberg, Dirt…” there was a silence “Dirty Joe Levingstine? Who was messing with my roll call list?” the class laughed but the teacher did not find anything amusing “Be quiet!” she yelled, she kept walking back and forth at the front of the room and constantly asking who messed with her list. Joe raised his hand and said “That’s my name.” the teacher just stared at him for a second and she didn’t know what to say except the same thing every other teacher had asked him “What did you do to get a name like that?” The class eventually resumed after a long awkward silence.
There is not much I can say more about the school day after the first period cause that’s the only period I had Joe in, except counting lunch when he brought his own squirrel stew lunch that basically made ever girl at the table nearly vomit, so I’m just going to skip to the end of the day when we were all heading to the bus, I arrived on the bus to see that Joe had already been seated on the bus past out asleep so I went ahead to sit down next to him. When the bus finally started to leave the school it looks as if things couldn’t get any worse, but sadly it was just the beginning of the long ten minutes of humiliation, to start it off the bus driver took a sharp right turn which caused Joe to fall over on to my shoulder, his greasy hair got all over my face and his drool got all over my shirt, and if that wasn’t the worst of it, being surrounded by twenty plus kids and all of them seeing that there is a boy’s head on another boys shoulder makes it feel like a person on a megaphone yelling “Let the gay jokes commence!” There was a lot of laughing, giggling, and whispering into each other’s ears. I didn’t hear all the jokes but there was one that I did hear because the kids behind us were making, I believe the joke went like this “I guess he likes his men dirty!” once I heard that I gently pushed him over and turned around and said “Do you want your teeth knocked out today or tomorrow?!” he just stared at me and I said “That’s what I thought.”
We finally arrived at the bus stop and I ran off the bus without thinking of anything at all, just to get away from the embarrassment. As I was walking home I started to think a lot, is this what middle school is going to be like for me? Is this how middle school is for everyone? Should I have been such a jerk to Joe? Out of all those questions there were only two answered, this is only the beginning of harassment and torture, and maybe I should try to be a little nicer to Joe. Then I realized Joe is still sleeping on the bus.
Now that I’m in high school and a lot older I’ve grown to become a little smarter about these things like life is going to be with smooth rides on a road but then there can be the bumpy rides and the traffic cones in the way. Me and Joe have become friends now sense then and I realized that he is a very nice person and very funny, he is a little cleaner now and less weird but that’s what happens when you get older thing will change and can be for the best. I guess that’s an example of the saying “Life goes on.”





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