Thursday, November 17, 2005

Snippets of Early Memories

Staying out of the sun from noon to 3. This was an anti-polio strategy of my parents even though we had gotten the recently discovered polio vaccine.

Lucky for us, Topper was on during that time and I watched it with my older sisters every afternoon.

Playing house with my older sisters and always being sent out to work.

Playing Mass with Necco Wafers as Communion. Since I was the only boy, I assumed the priestly duties most of the time.

Running around giggling as we shouted "They're attacking from the rear" after hearing that phrase from a Zorro episode.

Our skinny, 3 level back yard. It was level at the back of the house, then there was a steep rock garden area, followed by another flat area with a giant cottonwood tree, followed by a steep hill of maybe 4-5' and another flat area with wild berries and honeysuckle growing along the fence.

My American Flyer train set, with its beautiful smoking engine and in true Cold War fashion, a rocket launching car. As C. K. Dexter Haven would say, "It was yar."

Being surprised when my Dad painted a box the size of a strike zone on the cinder block basement wall so I could practice pitching all winter long. This violated the "No ball playing in the house rule".

The one and only baseball game that my Dad took me to. It was a night game and I thought it was cool that the "Sun Deck" that I saw during the Sunday day games on TV became the "Moon Deck" at night. I remember nothing other than Roy McMillan hitting a fly to medium center field that I thought was way out of the ballpark.

About that same time, my Dad got me a crystal radio tuned to the Reds station. I would lie in bed listening to Waite Hoyt announce the games.

Hearing Waite Hoyt recreate West Coast games from the telegraph ticker. I was turning 6 the year that the Dodgers and Giants went West and I recall that the radio broadcasts for the first couple of years were re-creations. I've done a quick scan of the 'net and the bits of information that I found say that re-creations disappeared by 1950. But these first couple of years might have been exceptional cases.

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