OPINION COLUMNS

Public service information regarding the goose

By Gerre Joiner | Published Wednesday, February 11, 2015
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Definition of the term goose:

“To sharply poke or pinch someone. Derived from a goose’s inclination to bite at a retreating intruder’s hindquarters. (Some urban dictionaries suggest a place on the human body above the back of the legs and below the back of the torso.)”

Gerre Joiner

Gerre Joiner

There are at least two men who regularly drink coffee with our bunch who are profoundly “goosy.” They are normal in every way. They are middle-aged men with homes and families. They exhibit normal reflexes to regular stimuli … except goosing.

When a goose-er stands behind one of these men and surprises him with a poke to the ribs, it’s anyone’s guess what might happen next. Here are a few of the reactions:

  • He tenses suddenly.
  • He suddenly stands erect.
  • His arms suddenly close the gap between their pre-goose location and his ribs.
  • His hands quickly form fists as he prepares to clobber the goose-er with his dominant (either left or right) hand.

This reaction is completely involuntary. I have told one of my goosy friends, “I promise you that I will not touch you, and I won’t even get close to you.” Then I make a motion with my index finger like I am preparing to goose him.

I have discovered that it is not necessary to make a fast motion with my hand or index finger. I only need to show him my hand or index finger, and then kind of point it toward his rib cage, and the following things happen:

  • He tenses suddenly.
  • He suddenly stands erect.
  • His arms suddenly close the gap between their pre-goose location and his ribs.
  • His hands quickly form fists as he prepares to clobber the goose-er with his dominant (either left or right) hand.

It’s important for the potential goose-er to consider a few things before yielding to the temptation to goose:

  • If he gets hit or dope-slapped because of the goose, he had it coming.
  • If food or drink is scattered all over a restaurant because of the goose, the goose-er should own his mistake quickly. (“This mess is my fault, and I’m terribly sorry.”)
  • If the goose-ee involuntarily cusses a little because of the goose, the goose-er should (again) own his mistake quickly. (“I caused you to cuss in this very public place, and I’m terribly sorry.”)
  • The goose-ee was probably tickled and poked too much as a child and cannot be held responsible for the dope slap, the clobber or the messy restaurant resulting from a goose.

This column is presented as a public service. You are welcome.

Gerre Joiner is a semi-retired church musician and has lived in Decatur since 1999.

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