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Kids Playing Mud Football Realize They're Playing in Sewage

In his book Glorious Mess, Mike Howerton tells the following story about a childhood experience playing "mud football." After a huge downpour, he and his neighborhood buddies found a gully filled with two inches of standing water. Howerton describes what happened next:

We had a blast. Every tackle would send you sliding for yards and yards. The ball was like a greased pig, which meant tons of fumbles and gang tackles and laughter.
I remember tackling one of [my friends] and watching him skim across the surface of the water for something like four miles and thinking, "I might be in heaven." When he got up, I noticed something stuck on his shoulder. I peered closer, wondering, "What is that?" Now, there was a huge, concrete sewage runoff drain right next to the gully. And apparently during heavy rains, all sorts of things got backed up, and I don't know if the apartment complex immediately next to the school burst a pipe or what, but I do know we didn't really pay attention to the flotsam in the gully until I noticed that something on Craig's shoulder. I peered closer and suddenly realized it was a soaking piece of toilet paper. In that same instant I realized the smell surrounding me was a bit more pungent than a typical mud football game ought to smell. I yelled out, "We're playing in POOP WATER!" and we bolted for home as fast as we could.
Talk about an instant of mental transformation …. Sometimes in life we need our thinking transformed. Sometimes we think we're having fun until we realize we're rolling around in sewage.

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