Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Times Have Changed

This morning I was cruising on I-20 with my usual load of students. The girls immediately behind me were enthralled by the carpet of bluebonnets alongside the road and were wondering about bluebonnet seeds. I started to speak up and tell them that the seeds were about the size of BB's and just about as hard. But I held up when I realized that kids today probably don't know much about BB's. Sure was different in the '50's when I was a Culver Street urchin.

I think every household was home to at least one BB gun back then. Of course, there was no government watchdog to bark loudly about all the inherent dangers to having this weapon around the house. In retrospect, these things shouldn't have been allowed in the hands of anyone under 21, but back then Moms everywhere would just say, "Be careful...that thing could put somebody's eye out."

This was so typical of the laissez faire attitude of parents back then. Crime was almost non-existent. And kiddoes getting hurt with frightful Christmas toys was extremely common and to be expected. Parents just patched you up and sent you out the back door for more fun and deathly games. "Billy, grab that Daisy BB gun and see if you can shoot this can off my head!"

Another example of how carefree times were occurred during my summers on Culver Street. We lived 2 blocks from the railroad tracks, and I spent hours there nearly every day except Sunday. Again, in retrospect, this was crazy to the max. I chatted up winos and hobos on a daily basis. I would crouch in the trestle over Samuell Blvd. as a fast freight blew past at over 60 mph...just inches from my fairly empty head. There was another trestle a mile away that crossed another track, with a drop of about 70 feet to the rails below. One day, my older brother decided we would cross the trestle by walking on the rails. This particular trestle didn't have the steel sides to it. It was just bare track. Charlie went first and made it. I couldn't afford to be cowardly or indecisive in his presence, of course, so I started out. I remember vividly concentrating only on the rails, but I could easily see the track way down below using my peripheral vision. I guess God had plans for me and I somehow made it.

If there's any good to come from my parents' transition to heaven (other than the obvious), it's that they never knew about the winos or the hobos or the trestle trek. Here's what scares me, though. What haven't our 3 kids told us about??


Brooke said...

Hee-hee! Wouldn't you like to know!

Tim Perkins said...

Yes, I would. I think.

Blake Perkins said...

If you only knew where Brett and I rode our backs. Forney road. We walked the creek that goes under Forney. We always like to cross Jim Miller and ride on those elevated tennis courts.

Blake Perkins said...


Tim Perkins said...

That's it. Both of you are grounded.