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Jerry McGrellis

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Member Since: Jun, 2007

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Growing Up in a Tough City
by Jerry McGrellis   

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Category: 

Action/Thriller

Publisher:  iUniverse, Inc. ISBN-10:  0595422950 Type: 
Pages: 

136

Copyright:  16 May 2007 ISBN-13:  9780595422951
Fiction

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Growing Up in a Tough City

Growing up in Jersey City, New Jersey, from 1966 to 1979, Tony quickly learns that there are few rules on the streets. A child born in the city has to learn fast, and Tony is no exception.

From the beginning day of first grade in Catholic school in 1966, Tony creates friendships that will last a lifetime. There's Chubs, one of the leaders of the group and the toughest boy in the class; Patty, a skinny blond kid with a penchant for making people laugh; Mickey, the boy who loves sports; and Chucky, a short kid who always bounces when he walks.

Through the school years and the summer months, the boys play football, basketball, and baseball-and land in a whole lot of trouble. Tony has his first fight while walking home from first grade one day and soon learns from his mother, It is a tough world and you have to be tough, too. Yet in this rough city, the boys protect each other and learn the importance of honor and loyalty. But they also realize that escaping from the inner city isn't as easy as they think.

The fictionalized memoir of author Jerry McGrellis, Growing Up in a Tough City speaks to the carefree days of the past while simultaneously focusing on the current problems of inner-city youth.

Growing up in Jersey City, New Jersey, from 1966 to 1979, Tony quickly learns that there are few rules on the streets. A child born in the city has to learn fast, and Tony is no exception.

From the beginning day of first grade in Catholic school in 1966, Tony creates friendships that will last a lifetime. There's Chubs, one of the leaders of the group and the toughest boy in the class; Patty, a skinny blond kid with a penchant for making people laugh; Mickey, the boy who loves sports; and Chucky, a short kid who always bounces when he walks.

One time Patty and I went to church. We sat in the back of the church. Patty was bored so he was trying to make me laugh. He was making faces and dancing in the pew. I did not like laughing in church. No matter what he did he could not make me laugh. I just ignored Patty; he stopped trying to make me laugh for a while. I knew it was the calm before the storm because I never saw Patty sit still for so long before. He was planning his next move. Well there was this nice Nun sitting next to me, the Nun was short and fat. We did not know the Nun she was probably visiting from another parish. When the priest said, let us show the sign of peace, Patty look at me with a serious face and said peace be with you and shook my hand. Then he turned to the Nun and grabbed her hand and shook her hand and patted her on top of the Nun hat and said peace be with you, you fat little chubby little nun. Well I could not stop laughing I was rolling around in the pew laughing. The nice Nun looked at Patty like he was crazy. I could not stop laughing. I tried to bite my tongue to stop laughing but that did not even work. I had to leave the church. Patty ran outside and said don’t you know it is a sin to leave Mass early. He hugged me and we laughed for a long time. Patty would not stop until he made you laugh. Patty invited me to eat dinner with his family. He waited until I took a sip of milk then he looked at me with a funny face and said Fred Head. I squirted the milk out of my nose. Patty kept my childhood fill of laughter.
Excerpt
We had an old saying in Jersey City “Nobody is perfect”; everybody messes up now and then. The trick of life is not to make the same mistake twice.


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