George Luz was an interesting character. Everyone in Easy Company could agree on that. They could also agree that they all loved him. He was the beloved radioman with a talent for impressions, especially famous people and high ranking Allied officers. He always had a joke or a smile for anyone in the company. Sometimes he invented games to boost morale.
To amuse himself (and various others) during long walks in tactical column formation, Luz had devised a game called “Grab Fanny”. It sounded simple enough, stay in formation and alert to German attack while grabbing a man’s fanny (which was always fun). And Luz had ways to make it more interesting. First, he had a point system.
In his most official voice, he explained in the chow line, “Grab fanny is a simple game, gentlemen. It’s five points for any enlisted man of equal or lesser rank, ten points for NCOs, and fifteen points for officers like Buck or Welsh that are easily accessible. Twenty points for Winters since he usually isn’t around us when we play, so consider him the high score.”
To make it more challenging, Luz would even add points for reactions to the fanny-grabbing. He came up with this while taking a piss. “Points for the fanny grabee: Five for surprise/anger, ten for laugh/good humor about it, and twenty if they look like they enjoy it.”
Right after back pay was issued, when people had money to burn, they even started betting on the game.
“Leibgott for a laugh. Five dollars.” Luz put a bill on the table.
“Boy, are you stupid? Lieb’s an angry guy. I don’t think he’ll take kindly to a fanny grabbing. He might be in a bad mood.” Randleman blew cigar smoke at Luz.
“Just take my bet.”
“Fine Luz, you’re gonna lose.”
Luz ended up winning the bet because he caught Liebgott on a good day when he was fantasizing about a Jewish girl with big soft titties.
Luz once bet Toye that he could get Doc Roe to laugh when he grabbed his fanny. Everyone around scoffed at the thought. Gene barely cracked a smile since Toccoa. Luz won the bet, though, with a touch of poetry. “What a lovely derrière you got there, mon cher.”
Gene Roe could not deny the humor in that line. He chuckled and said, “Luz, don’t ever say anything like that to me again or I won’t ever patch you up, uh.”
Luz laughed, agreed, and collected money from Toye, Talbert, and Grant.
Luz won a lot of money off of his friends, especially Randleman and Perconte since they didn’t set any restrictions on Luz being able to do voices while grabbing fannies. He would use the “appropriate voice” while attacking his prey. A little Marlene Dietrich for Guarnere and Colonel Sink or Harry Truman for Buck as an amusement.
Up to this point, Luz’s crowning achievement was grabbing Lipton’s fanny during one of these marches. He would not comment as to whether Lip enjoyed it or not. He said it was between them and left it at that.
With every game, “grab fanny” was getting old (not to mention that many of the platoon leaders were calling him out on it out of annoyance that they were getting grabbed too much or not at all) and needed to be retired. Luz decided to take the game out of commission with a bang. He was going to go for the highest point total possible: forty. The only way he could achieve this was to go after Winters’ fanny and make him look like he enjoyed it. Luz knew that something like this could get him court-martialed or something worse, but he was a brave soldier and a gambling man—and sometimes a little stupid, willing to go to such lengths for amusement of himself and others.
Luz spent the greater part of a week stalking his prey. He made excuses to help Winters out as a runner or just practiced how he could “accidently” end up behind him to attack.
Once he finally figured out the perfect approach for the swan song of grab fanny to forever seal it as legend, Luz fell into step behind Winters. He mentally prepared himself and then went for it. He reached forward. Luz had to admit that Winters had one of the most fit fannies he had ever had the pleasure of grabbing. The man was in shape.
Luz spoke as he grabbed the fanny as to not alarm his superior officer (since he remembered he was going for Winters enjoying it), “Well, Dick. George Luz might be up to something with this ‘grab fanny’ game. It’s kind of fun.”
Winters smiled. “Nix, I think you may be right.” He turned around. No one was there. He stopped and looked around. “Nix?”
Luz scurried back to his usual place in formation. He tried not to laugh as he elbowed Perconte. “Frank, I’ve retired grab fanny with the best total of all—forty points. I got Winters!”
Perconte adjusted the toothbrush in his mouth. “No way. I don’t believe you.”
Luz pointed to the sky. “Listen.”
Winters’ voice in the distance, “Luz!”
Perconte shook his head. “You’re getting a court-martial, pal.”
Luz shrugged. “It was worth it.”
Winters shook his head. George Luz got the better of him. He should have known. That didn’t feel like Nix’s usual touch. Just then, the real Nix came up to his side. “Why were you yelling? You never yell.”
“I…Luz…he…” Winters smirked. “Hey, Nix, want to play a game?”
Nix shrugged. “Alright, I could go for a game. What is it?”
“It’s called ‘grab fanny’.”
“Ooo, I like it already.”