23 July 2009

See the man with the stage fright . . .

It happened when I was nine years old, which would make it the summer of 1955. Having been fed lunch my brother and I were invited by our mother to spend the rest of the afternoon outside. Actually, it wasn't so much an invitation as a declaration of what was going to happen. She had cleaning to do; soap operss, Queen for a Day, and Liberace (the last two were different) to watch; and she didn't need two young boys doing their best to distract her.

To be honest, Mom did not really have to say very much to get us out of the house. The last thing nine and seven year old boys wanted to do on a nice summer day was stay inside. We had ants to watch, a tire swing to break our arms and/or necks on, and a cardboard rocket behind the shed to fight invading Martians in. At the very worst we could sit on the back steps and watch our cat taunt our dog by staying just an inch or so beyond his reach.

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