The Bunk Bed

From My Brother Wears Pink Pants by Tim Parsons
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I was about 9 and my brother was about 6 and we had a bunk bed.

Sometimes, I was on the top.
Sometimes, he was on the top.
Sometimes, I was on the bottom.
Sometimes, he was on the bottom.
You get the idea.

Well, one night,
I was on the bottom bed
and I was bored.
Very bored.

I look around
with nothing to do.
What to do?
I look up
and stare
at my brother’s bed.

Mmm . . . I wonder . . .
Mmm . . . I wonder . . .

You see,
above me,
were 10 pieces of wood
that his mattress was lying on.

I could see his mattress
through the wooden pieces.
It was blue.

I wonder . . .
I wonder . . .
I wonder if my . . .
If my . . .
If my hand will . . .
Will fit . . .
Will fit through . . .
YES . . . it fits.

I push the mattress up a little
but I soon stop.
I’m only 9
and I can’t push that hard.
I give up.

I’m still bored.
Very bored.

I look around
with nothing to do.
Nothing to do.
I look up
and stare
at my brother’s bed again.

Mmm . . . I wonder . . .
Mmm . . . I wonder . . .
I wonder . . .
I wonder if my . . .
If my . . .
If my foot will . . .
Will fit . . .
Will fit through . . .
I stretch out my right leg and . . .
YES . . . it fits.

I push the mattress up a little!
I laugh to myself.

My leg is stronger than my arm.
A lot stronger.

This could be fun!

I watch my right leg
push the mattress up.

Just a little bit.
Hold it . . .
Hold . . .
and drop!
CRASH . . .
KABOOM . . .
He wakes up.

‘Eh . . . what’s going on?
Where am I?
Erm . . .
Flying elephants.
Biscuits please.
What’s going on?’

‘You’re having a bad dream,’ I say.
‘Go back to sleep.’

‘Oh, right . . . yeah,
erm . . . OK . . .
shall we . . .
Zzzzz . . . Zzzzz.’

He falls back to sleep
and I laugh my head off!

I do it again.
This time,
I stretch my leg out
even further.
Hold . . .
Hold . . .

(my leg begins to shake a little
with the weight)

and drop!
CRASH . . .
KABOOM . . .

He wakes up again!
‘Eh . . . what’s going on?
Where am I?
Erm . . .
I don’t want to go to bed yet.
What’s going on?
Where am I?’

‘You’re having a bad dream,’
I laugh.
‘Now go back to sleep,
you’re bothering me!’

He lies back down.
‘Oh . . . sorry . . .
Do you think that . . .
Zzzzz . . . Zzzzz.’

He falls back to sleep.
I cover my mouth
with my hands
so I don’t laugh my head off.

I don’t want to wake
mum and dad up!

I do it again.
And again, but a bit higher!
And again, but a bit higher!
And again, but even higher!

By now,
I am laughing so much
it hurts. I have tears
running down my face.

Then it happened.
This is when the game ended.
Have you ever heard
someone say,
‘It will end in tears’?

It usually means your joke
will get out of hand. This joke did
and it did end in tears!

I was going to be in big trouble.
My tired leg stretched out for the last time
(I didn’t know it would be the last time of course).

I really stretched it . . .
and then stretched it
a little more.


In slow motion,
the entire contents
of my brother’s bed
slid off the mattress
and fell through the air,
including my 6-year-old baby brother!


It all happened so slowly.
My leg was still stuck
between two pieces of wood.

My face turned to my side
to see my brother
waving his small arms around
in a desperate attempt
to fly back to his bed!

Stupid, eh!
I panic.
I panic big time.

I try to catch him
but only manage to
karate chop him,
POW . . .
right on his nose!

For a split second,
his eyes glare at me
as he falls towards the floor.

He looks confused.
Well wouldn’t you be?

Being kicked out of your bed
whilst dreaming and then being karate chopped on the nose is hardly a nice experience for anyone. Especially if you’re only 6.

Could things get any worse?

I was already wondering
what mum and dad
were going to say.

I was going to get really told off!
Then things did get worse.

How, you may ask?
Well, we weren’t the tidiest of brothers.

we were really, really messy!
Totally hopeless.
I still am actually
and I’m an adult now.

we had been playing
with our toys during day
and our toys belonged
in a big wooden box.

The box had wheels
and the box slid
underneath the bunk bed.

The box was still out.

It was below my brother,
just where he was about to


This is what was in the box:
action figures
toy soldiers
cricket bat
and much more.

It might not have been too bad
if we had this in our toy box:
cuddly toys
and bean bags.
But no such luck.

He was in big trouble.
This was going to be painful.
He looks at me again
just before his crash-landing.
He looks down.
He looks at me.
He looks down.
He looks at me.

Boy he looks mad.
And then, my brother disappears from sight.

The noise was so loud:

His landing was colossal.
All the toys were launched into the air,
coming level with my head
before falling back into the box.
Well, on my brother actually.

Then . . .
Then . . .

Silence for about 5 seconds.

This was the time it took
for my brother to
wobble himself up
from inside the box
and back onto his stinging feet.

I perch on the edge of my bed and
I’m staring nervously at my brother.
He is wearing his pink pants
with his little white vest.

Bits of Lego are stuck
on each sore arm.

Plastic toy soldiers
are clinging to his
battered left leg
and two metal cars
are stuck to his
painful right leg.

His bottom lip starts to shake
and wobble and his whole body starts to tremble.

I realise this is it.
His eyes start to water.
I’m in big trouble.

I reckon I have about 10 seconds
before he screams out
‘MUMMY . . . DADDY . . .’

What can I do?
There’s only one thing I can do.
BEG for forgiveness.

You know when things are that bad
when you have to beg for forgiveness.

‘I am really, really sorry.
You can have the top bunk forever.
You can have all my sweets.
I will give you my pocket money.
You can play with my football.
You can be on my team at school.
You can use my skateboard.
Please don’t tell.
PLEASE . . . PLEASE . . .
I promise you can have . . .’

‘MUMMY . . . DADDY . . .’
he cries.

Too late.
That’s it.
I’m in for it now.
I have one more trick
up my sleeve though.
I climb back into bed
and pretend to be asleep.

Mum and dad eventually rush in.
they both shout.

I turn around very slowly,
rub my eyes as if I am waking up,
focus on my brother
and pretend I know nothing
about it.

My brother’s right arm rises deliberately as toys continue to fall off him and land in the box.

He points in my direction!

Who did they believe?
That’s right.
Not me!

Did I lose my pocket money that week?

Was I allowed out to play the next day?

Did my brother laugh at me in the morning?

Would I do it again?
Of course!
Did I do it again?

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