@ 2018 Bill Murphy
Bob Hope had it right! We can be thankful for some memories. But for a toy?
A few of my childhood toys bring back memories…. like the large 3-wheel bike, without brakes. I was 5 or 6 at the time. The thing was really an oversized, stretched tricycle. Boy was it fast! I discovered that the very first time I rode it.
Dad unloaded the new toy at our driveway, and I immediately took off, lickety-split down Evergreen. I should have gone in the other direction. I was rapidly approaching busy Terry Road when I discovered the thing had no brakes. I managed to pull off the sidewalk as I neared Mrs. Busby’s house, hoping I could slow it down in her front yard, or perhaps, as I circled her house. I did neither. Instead, I crashed full-tilt into the large tree, with larger roots, at the end of her driveway. I think I went 5 feet UP that tree!
Things like that, one can’t help but remember.
But the toy which brought me at least as much pleasure, but with none of the pain, was a unique water-gun. My guess is that it came from H.L.Greens, downtown. It probably costs no more than 50c. But it gave me many, many happy hours of flying and fighting fun! This water pistol was made in the shape of an airplane!
Jets were new at the time, and this toy was a close replica of the all new U.S. Air Force Republic F-84 Thunderjet. I’d fill ‘er up, grab the handle, and take off… zooming into action… on search and destroy missions all around our yard. I’d sweep down low… making my best jet-fighter sounds… and strafed anything and everything that moved: enemy tanks (roly-polies), ants (troops), crickets (vehicles), and worst of all, evil spiders, (artillery)! The fun only stopped when I was forced to return to base to re-fuel and re-arm.
A few months ago I saw this one pictured above (with missing canopy) for sale on eBay. Someone obviously knew just how much unadulterated fun was contained in this small plastic toy – because I could have purchased several dozen cases of them way back when… for what they wanted for this single item today!
No, I didn’t purchase it… it was that expensive. Anyway, I suppose I would look rather silly now, running across the yard make jet-noises, and squirting at ants.