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Featherbed lane was the place where George Washington's soldiers were given featherbeds during a winter to sleep on. It was also the scene of one of the worst fights between me, George, and a gang of 10 year olds lead by a short kid named, "Butch."

Butch and his gang of urchins, saw me and my friend George and chased us towards the top of Feathbed Lane where they caught up with us.

There was a low stone wall there that surrounded the Church courtyard, and a drop of six or ten feet into the courtyard. Butch and his gang pinned me up against this wall and were attempting to toss me backwards into the courtyard.

I have no idea to this day why Butch was after us -- its possible it was because they were mostly Irish and we were Jewish -- but most probably it was because we were not as tough as they were and easy to pick on.

But throwing me over the wall -- that had me terrified -- and I fought back -- kicking and punching wildly -- and I connected with Butch in the face and still remember the shocked looked he had. There was a moment when time froze, and he wiped blood from his lip. Then, more determined then ever, he and the other kids had me halfway over the wall, and I could look down into the courtyard. As I was about to fall over -- some grownups came by and broke it up.

 

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All photography copyright Dave Beckerman.