Looking at the past can be painful

Barry Evans
Barry Evans

It is fascinating how an incident can make you think about things that occurred in the past.  I speak of events about which I had not considered for some time.  For example, I was in a doctor’s office recently when he asked the question as to whether I smoked.  I said no.  Then he asked if I had ever smoked. I indicated that I had not and added that when I was young we did not have much money so I decided that what money I had I would spend on girls not cigarettes.  He laughed and noted that I had made a good decision.  It is always nice to have a doctor agree with your course of action.

For some reason that made me think back when we lived in a small town and rented the bottom floor of a small apartment building.  Actually the building was owned by my dad’s parents, and my dad took care of the building.  In any case my parents decided to raise chickens.  There was a small out building on the property and the chickens were kept there.  They were not contained there all day.  They were what you would call today, free range chickens.  I have no idea how my parents got them back in the building at night, but they did – or at least my mother did.  I can recall her chasing them.  The chickens were Rhode Island Reds and they laid brown eggs.  That is pertinent today since The Blonde in the house will not eat brown eggs knowingly.  Do not ask me to explain.  It is one of the enigmas of the feminine psyche, I guess.

Then I thought about my Red Ryder BB gun. It was a great gun which I wish I still had. However, one day I was using it and it stopped working. I should have known better as I was not a handy-kid any more than I am a handyman today, I took it apart and a small spring popped out. Naturally I could not get it back in and Red Ryder did not work again for me. It may have been to the good as while my mother never said that “I would shoot my eye out”, she may have had cause to be concerned. I don’t think I have ever mentioned this to anyone, but a friend who also had a Red Ryder and I decided to shoot at each other while we hid behind trees.  He popped me in the back and it stung like heck. I decided no more of that.

At least I didn’t have that problem with my Roy Rogers cap gun – which I don’t have any more either.  I begged for it, and when I got it, I found that it did not shoot rolls of caps like other cap guns – including my Dick Tracy model. What it used was a special cap that contained only six shots.  The six shot cap was round and flat so when you put it against the chamber you could fire six shots just like Roy.  This was the case despite the fact that if you ever watched old cowboy movies, everyone whether the bad or good guys, was able to squeeze more than six shots out of his gun.  Now when you are fighting other kids a six shot gun would get you eliminated, so I had to use the ones with the cap roll. As a result my Roy Rogers gun did not get used a lot.

Now if I just had my Red Ryder BB gun, Roy Rogers’s cap gun, Big Little books, and comic books from my youth I would be sitting pretty.  Especially if I still possessed my first Superman and Batman comic books! Sometimes looking at the past can be painful at times!

Barry Evans writes about Life in The Villages for Villages-News.com