Sometimes short messages are the best way to make a point. This AbBerrations section contains ideas that don’t precisely fit within a present discussion.
Dal sent me this clipping dated 1942 and it brought back memories of a time when things were tightening up in America. The Japs bombed Pearl Harbor a year earlier so we were in the war and not winning.
All the kids wanted to help our troops. One girl received an award for an idea she submitted. She said her father’s barn was full of spider webs and wanted to know if our government could use some, thus the phrase, “think outside the box,” was born.
In class we whittled Japanese and German airplanes out of wood so our fighter pilots could study them from all angles and better identify the enemy. I remember how proud we were to help in that way.
Once a week grades 7 through 12 turned out of school to collect rubber and iron. We went door to door asking everyone to donate what they could for the war effort. One little old lady was ironing when I spoke to her through the screen door. She said, “Here, you can have this thing as soon as it cools.” That’s the way it was, and we’d pile everything up in the school yard. Some stacks were 10 feet high because people drove by and threw things on. If you looked closely you could see guns, bicycles, fishing reels, skillets, and nearly everything else. The Army came by with big trucks and all the boys helped throw things on.
When I was 13 and Skippy was 15 we volunteered to check coats at the USO. Fort Hood was about 35 miles away and on weekends Temple was full of soldiers. The winter wool coats were really heavy. There were so many troops lined up at closing that we didn’t have time to look at numbers on the check stubs, we just handed each guy a coat. I think most of them left before they realized they had the wrong one. Some of those sergeants were pretty big so Skippy and I were quick to slip through the side door and run to the safety of 1413 north Main Street. f