Fictional Flashback: Livingston, New Jersey – it’s a sunny morning in 1974, the 8th grade boys are attending their regular gym class at Squirestown Elementary School. On the east wall of the gym hangs a blue and gold banner proclaiming, “Respect is the Name of the Game.”
The boys are preparing for an exciting, but often vicious, game of dodgeball, when in waddles a tardy, rotund twelve year old, named Chris Christie (His parents are alliteration devotees). Immediately, one kid yells, “Hey Christie, how come youse late, didda ya stop by youse locker and eat a fudgeba?.” Then another shouts, “Christie, you look like one of dem balloons in the Macy’s Parade. Hey guys, let’s pop that balloon.”
With that, coupled with taunts and laughter, a maelstrom of dodgeballs pummels the young Christie. Chris cannot escape; he tries to run, but he’s not too fleet a foot, and is soon trapped between the immovable back wall of the gym and a herd of screaming twelve year olds relentlessly launching pain-inducing projectiles at his soft body. He crumples to the floor, a whimpering helpless mass.
Mesomorph Coach Nagel intervenes, bellowing, “Cut it out; stop it now; you will all be in a hell of a lot of trouble.” Note: Coaches are the only educators allowed to use mild profanity – it adds to their image. The attackers cease their bombardment, and Nagel soothes Christie.
Christie tearfully moans, “Kids shouldn’t be allowed to make fun of another kid’s weight.” Nagel responds, “I make the rules in this gym; however, let’s refer this to the Student Council Advisory committee and see what they have to say.”