The story of Guy Fawkes does not end well.

After confessing to being part of a plot to kill King James (a Protestant) and replace him with a Catholic, Fawkes fell (or leapt) from the gallows before he could be hanged, broke his neck and died.

His body was cut into quarters and distributed to the four corners of the kingdom as a gory warning to anyone who might be thinking about assassinating kings.

The November 5 bonfire tradition comes from Londoners being urged to light fires and celebrate the failed assassination attempt.


Yesterday, I watched a young man in his school uniform stroll along a busy footpath pointing a "10 shot" firework at fellow pupils, and alarmingly, my car.

I don't think he was commemorating King James' near miss.

The "shot" fizzled out before it hit my car. A second one pointed at a fellow pupil fizzled as well.

I bit my tongue, suppressing the desire to yell "hey, you dickhead".

The shot didn't hit my car, and the spent firework was tossed aside.

Also, the last time I yelled at a teenage boy he took umbrage and chased me.

He had been ambling across a busy intersection, deliberately blocking traffic to impress a giggling girl.

The slow amble may also have been due to the restrictive nature of his shorts which hung so low he walked like someone who had just ridden a horse from Kaitaia.

It was a Friday after a long week and I was tempted to run the little so and so over.
Instead, I lowered the passenger window and yelled out "you're a dick".

There may have been another word between "a" and "dick" but the trauma of what happened next caused me to forget what it was.

Because the subject of my insult must have hitched his shorts up, as he was running, after my departing car.

I am pretty sure he was all show, but I didn't fancy having my door panels kicked in.

Driving toward a red light, stopping seemed a poor option.

I shot into a supermarket carpark, exiting southbound - the wrong way.

I eventually got home after crawling through the Western Hills Drive roadworks ... something else that is capable of evoking the desire to yell rude names.

As for my firework friend in his uniform, he sauntered across the road to his school almost as slow as the cowboy with the giggling girlfriend.

A responsible girl stepped on the smouldering remnant of one of the "shots".

And no one cared, the roadworks meant traffic was already travelling at a slow crawl.