Every child who has swam in a lake or the ocean, where you can not see to the bottom of the water you are swimming in, has been startled when something bumps their leg or body. Some may think for a brief moment that a monster or large fish is attacking them and panic, until they realize they are safe and it the fish was actually just a piece of seaweed or wood. For this camp prank, I as well as a few other counselors could hold our breath under water for a very long time. We would swim under the pier into the camper’s swimming area and start yanking on the legs of campers to get them freaked out.
One day we brought a camcorder to videotape the event and I’m glad we did. We chose a rather large portly misshapen boy, Jake, to do our dirty work on. I swam very close into shore where the water was only about three feet deep and started yanking on a Jake’s leg, almost pulling him under water. I did this several times over a five-minute period. The last time I did it, I gently bit him on the leg as I pulled on him and he went berserker — thrashing and kicking all around him. Another camper happened to be swimming under water, was unaware of what was going on, and by chance surfaced next to the aggravated camper. When Jake saw him come up from the water, he immediately started attacking him and flailing him with his arms in a fit of rage from an adrenaline rush. The other boy had an absolutely perplexed look as to why he was being pummeled without provocation and swam away as fast as he could. The next day we asked Jake why he wasn’t swimming and he wouldn’t say. We apologized to him and told him it was us, at least I hope we did, I can’t quite remember.