The kick in my nuts
1 – The kick

That little Japanese kid was very weird… well… actually, he wasn’t. I was. I was the weirdo. And I was bullied because of it. We all discriminate, but when we are the victim, we are quick to champion the cause. I kept to myself, in my imaginary childish corner; when I looked both ways and saw the world that existed, I actually interacted very little, not always in a way I can be proud of.

It was 1983. Little Mingau Ácido was at preschool. During our physical education class, we queued up to practice tumbling on the mat, following directions from Miss Scarlett. The little slanted-eye creature right in front of me kept throwing me dirty looks, looking as friendless as I was. He was not having any of Little Mingau Ácido’s taunts.

“Open your eyes, Jap! You’re going to miss the mat when you tumble.”

“I’m half!”

“You’re Japanese. Hahaha…”

The boy's eyes, which to me were practically Martian, were so small that they seemed not to exist, and started getting red and bulging. The samurai inside this little Asian began to get annoyed: "where is the dignity of your ancestors, who shouted BANZAI and held grenades to blow themselves up at the end of World War II?" railed his inner self.

The somersaults came to an end. It was time to divide the mischievous boys into two teams. The first in line bent down and ran on all fours under the splayed legs of his other team members until he got to the end. Then at the finish, he stood up, spread his legs, and waited for the next one in line to repeat the cycle. The team whose members could complete the whole circuit of this tunnel of legs would be the champion. Of course, I landed on Banzai’s team.

Little Mingau Ácido watched the children passing beneath him and thought to himself:

“What a bore this game is!”

My little head soon figured out how to spice it up, just as it was the Japanese kid’s turn. When I saw this creature from the land of the rising sun–where everyone speaks gibberish and write funny scribbles—passing underneath, in that humiliating position, I had no doubt: I bent down a little bit and prepared my hands in attack position.

The little four-footed “oriental” passed slowly, but his trousers stayed in my hands. A few fractions of a second passed until the little samurai realized what had happened and what a humiliating situation he was in: he was running on all fours... in pink underwear.

The humiliation was great and the joy was widespread. A full plate for a group of six-year-olds. Little Mingau Acido, what have you done?

Nakano was the name of this poor kid. I will stop calling him by these insults before the politically correct police appear to tell me I can’t or to accuse me.

Nakano slowly came towards me. Serious body language and pink underpants. Little Mingau Acido was holding his trousers in his hand. Was I supposed to be afraid, or to laugh myself silly? Oh, what a dilemma! Nakano took it upon himself to clear it up for me. A kick square in the crotch silenced my laughter.

“It serves you right, Marcelo,” was Miss Scarlett’s violent judgment.

“Why did you keep hassling Nakano?”

Yes, Miss Scarlett... you were being fair-minded... Later, I would learn in history class about a famous law: “an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth….” A pain in the neck for a pain in the neck? Sounded fair enough...


2 – The consequences

“Honey, you are going to need to have an operation! When Nakano kicked you he hurt your little testicles.”

“Really, mommy?”

Although I was only six, I remember it like it was yesterday: I was lying on a stretcher, and half a dozen men and women with green clothes and masks were taking me into surgery.

"What a bunch of cowards," I thought, "Why do they need to hide behind the masks?"

But they were so nice! Seeing that little quiet boy about to have surgery on his scrotum, they just had to be friendly and joke around.

“Hey, what’s your name, young man?”


“You’re going to have an operation on your scrotum, young man!”

“I know...”

“Are you happy?”

“I guess so.”

“Then how ‘bout a peck on my nose?”

“I don’t think so...”

Suddenly, the games were over. One of the masked staff, a young woman, came toward me with a gigantic needle.

“No, no! I don't want it, lady!”

The benevolent gazes suddenly lost all their sparkle. They were no longer friendly. Two of them held me down. The young woman came closer holding that syringe with its frightening needle, and another masked man held up his finger in warning, saying:


They thought that they were in front any old scared child, but no, this was Little Mingau Acido!

“I’d rather have the gas.”

“The gas? You’d prefer the gas?”

“Yes, please.”

The lady dropped the terrifying injection and placed a plastic mask into my very small hands. I held it and took two deep breaths. Before I could even enjoy it and say "niiiiice", I blacked out...

Look how cute, people! Little Mingau Acido was so small and already could stand up for himself.

I woke up the following day with a bag of saline running into my arm and complaining about my mom that I didn’t feel so hot.

“Hang in there, son. Now, you can't move.”


3 – Revenge

Time passes, and six years went down the drain. Little Mingau Acido became a boy of twelve. The year was 1989. The little crotch that Nakano had kicked was already had its first bit of fuzz and its residents were already enchanted by girls.

The science teacher divided the class into groups of six to do an assignment. I whispered to four of my classmates in my from group:

“I won’t be in the same group as Nakano.”

“Why?” they all asked in chorus.

“Because he kicked me in the balls six years ago and I had to have an operation.”

“Whoa. So you’re sterile,” lamented Christian sarcastically.

“Me? How do you figure that?” Mingau Acido was a bit startled.

“You'll never be able to have kids, and when you turn 18, you’ll never get a hard-on,” was James’s apocalyptic prediction.

“That's right, Mingau Acido. If I were you, I would try to take advantage of everything you can now,” was Michael’s opinion.

“I think Michael’s right, Mingau Acido,” concluded William finished.

“And if I were you, I would beat the crap out of that Japanese kid.”

Mingau Acido was innocent and believed everything they told him. The Japanese kid deserved payback: an eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth… and a crotch for a crotch!

“Nakano, you jerk, this is for my kids!”

The Japanese kid fell like a log onto the classroom floor. Stretched out and with the face of someone who had just placed a load in his own pants, he cried:


Another twenty-five years have gone by. The year is 2014. I googled Nakano and discovered that grew up to raise poultry, breeding little chicks in incubators, who grow up to be what else but cocks..

Such are the vagaries of life…

Mingau Ácido (Marcelo Garbine)

Writer: Marcelo Garbine Mingau Ácido
Translation: Tracy Smith Miyake
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Illustrated by Nanci Penna

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