And I (Bobby Joe) Wasn’t Even a Cop


Bobby Joe (my alter ego). The Suppressed, Violent Shadow In My Life

“Bobby Joe” Another form of my given names, Robert Joseph


Margery and Bob

That very special, calming person, my wife in my life



My earliest memory of Bobby Joe in action (the shadow within me revealed)

            My brothers and I spent much of our growing up years in Freehold, New Jersey. There was a section of town, on the other side of the railroad tracks, called Texas. It had no connection, what so ever, with the state that also bore that name. Even during the depression years, Freehold’s Texas was poorer and rougher and meaner than the rest of town.


            Unfortunately, Texas was also the location of the Synagogue and Hebrew school. It happened on the way home from Hebrew school. My brother, Ted, was on his bike, trailing me on my bike by five or ten yards when I heard his shout for help. Just to set the stage, Ted was seven years old and small. I was nine and bigger. I also had my right wrist in a cast having fractured it a few weeks earlier.


            Turning my bike around I found two or three of the local, junior barbarians holding on to Ted and his bike. I attacked them, rather, it was Bobby Joe who did the attacking and they fled. Bobby Joe, I was to learn many years later, loved danger and excitement and was never, ever afraid (I could never understand that). Bob Flicker, on the other hand, was no stranger to fear.




         Many years ago there was a very popular comic strip called Terry and The Pirates. One of the characters in the strip was a giant of a man who was rather stupid but could be dangerous. Bobby Joe had his own version of Big Stoop. He was a problem for me when over one summer, home from college; I was lifeguard at the local lake. Big Stoop was there causing trouble and threatened me. Bobby Joe took over and Big Stoop ran from the lake never to be a problem again.


            Somewhere, between that incident in Texas and the confrontation with Big Stoop, I learned that Bobby Joe, for some unfathomable reason was never afraid while most everybody else knew fear including me, Bob Flicker. I would say, in later years, following a Bobby Joe situation that he was going to get me killed. So far I’ve been lucky. The closest I came to that possible event occurring is described in my article: I’VE GOT A GUN IN MY POCKET! GIMME YOUR WALLET  (Click Here)



         I was standing on the crowded platform of a New York City subway platform on the 14th Street station waiting for a train to arrive. There were three of them, standing apart from the waiting passengers. I noticed them by the way they were dressed. Two of them wore dirty, ripped jeans and tee shirts while the third was extremely well dressed in a suit, white shirt and tie, an almost startling contrast to the other two.


            It happened when the train pulled into the station and opened its doors. After the passengers of the train filed out, I entered the still crowded train. I was barely inside the doors when I noticed the two ripped jeans went past me, pushing their way into the train. Their friend in the suit was directly behind me with his hand inside my pants pocket where he thought I kept my wallet (it was my key case). I grabbed his wrist and SHOUTED, “You’re trying to pick my pocket!”


            His reaction was to deny trying to pick my pocket and then hurried off the train, followed by his two friends. I didn’t realize, in the excitement, that train doors were still open. The three friends remained on the platform, acting casually as if nothing had happened. Enter Bobby Joe. I stood in open doorway of the train and my fury took over as I watched the three, particularly the one in the suit who had tried to pick my pocket standing around casually talking.


            Bob Flicker withdrew, becoming an observer, as Bobby Joe took over. It was Bobby Joe who raced out of the parked train and grabbed the pickpocket and threw him against a steel support column shouting, “You’re under arrest!”


            His reply was, “Hey man, you can’t arrest me!”

            Bobby Joe’s reply was, “You’re right. Releasing him.


            At that moment a police officer appeared, questioning the goings on. Incidentally, the train had not moved. Bob Flicker was back and I explained what had happened. After a struggle the pickpocket was arrested. I (Bob Flicker) appeared as a witness in a grand jury hearing and, for Bobby Joe, and me ended the story.




Do you admit that you too may have your very own Bobby Joe?

Who me?



Bob Flicker

August 2015



Recognizing your own Bobby Joe:

You can be of either sex and of any age. If you are always angry, your Bobby Joe may have taken over. Not good. It’s time to find that even-tempered you and let that part of yourself take over. Your Bobby Joe will never leave you and be there when needed.


When will your Bobby Joe be needed? You will know. For examples: (1) Someone pushes or shoves in a store sale and doesn’t apologize. (Bobby Joe time!)  2. You are driving your car and a piggy driver cuts you off intentionally. (Bobby Joe time!) A waiter seems to intentionally ignore you after waiting overlong for service. (Bobby Joe time!) And the list goes on and on.   



Don’t forget to put your Bobby Joe back in the shadows when he or she is no longer needed. Let your nicer self reappear. You will be happier for it.


Bob Flicker


Bobby Joe


 © robert 2014