Vol.2..Norwegian Farmer’s Son..May 11th

May 11th…………“SINCE YOU SHARED, GRANDPA, THAT YOU HAD A TELEVISION IN YOUR FARM HOME NEAR KIESTER, MINNESOTA, WHAT WAS AN EXCITING SHOW (OR SHOWS) THAT YOU ENJOYED WATCHING”?

Actor Clayton Moore (L), famous for his good guy role as The Lone Ranger, actually plays the part of one of the villains in the twelve chapter series called, “Radar Men From The Moon”.

“NOOOOO!!! LONE RANGER!!! NOT YOU!!! YOU JUST CAN’T BE A BAD GUY”!!!! Such were the pleading words flowing out of my emotional little boy mouth as I mourned over even the thought of my great childhood hero of the “Silver Screen” and television having given himself over to the “dark side” and was now a villainous bad guy!!!! Even though the actor, Clayton Moore, was not wearing his famous Lone Ranger mask, my youngster ears could hear and discern that voice of his easily.

There I was, perched precariously on the very edge of our family sofa in our snug little Living Room, fully captured and enraptured by what I saw happening on the screen of our old black n white Zenith television that sat in the corner of the room. Drying off my sweaty palms on the knees of my blue jeans, I watched as Commando Cody donned his amazing leather coat flying suit and stepped outside of his laboratory office building. He carefully mounted his silver bullet-looking flying helmet on and then began turning some buttons on the chest of this rocket jacket he wore. Electronic whirring noises were building to a crescendo as he ran towards me and leaped into the air with the sound of rockets propelling him skyward.

Little did this prepubescent farm boy know of anything when it came to the reality, logic and chronological timing of this Hollywood make-believe. To my young mindset, I, like many literal-minded children of that age span, perceived that Commando Cody really did fly in his rocket suit and that that large, pointed sausage of a space ship really did fly to the moon and back, etc., etc.. If it was on the screen of our Zenith, it must be real, right? πŸ˜‰

Elliott’s mother, Clarice (holding tray), and family sit near the little television set in the corner that “Radar Men Of The Moon” was broadcast on. Circa 1960.

The first chapter, entitled “Moon Rocket” ended with high suspense as “Retik”, the evil Ruler Of The Moon fired his atom ray-gun that exploded a large piece of Moon Man equipment that Commando Cody was hiding behind. Was he killed? I wouldn’t know until the next week when Chapter Two would continue this hair-raising adventure.

In the meantime, I decided to go outside to imitate my own version of Commando Cody and his flying suit which rocketed him through the skies and down to rescue anyone in need. A small piece of cardboard, with crayon drawings of dials and switches would have to do for my little boy “flying suit”. The section of cardboard seemed to fit pretty good between my bib overall suspenders that came over my shoulders and clipped onto the breast-piece of those striped bib overalls.

Now, all I needed was a launch point from which I would jump into the air and pretend I was {{{{COMMANDO CODY!!!}}}} πŸ˜‰

A stack of straw bales, near our barn, seemed to do nicely for their height; they would be my launching pad into “space”. With a hope-filled leap I came down off the heights of the bales and hit the deck running. With head down and arms outstretched in front of me, I ran like the wind around the yard looking down, just like my space hero did, looking for the nasty, evil henchmen below. As I’d locate those scoundrels, I’d make a jump in the air and land (as if I had come down out of the sky, of course……….Hehehe! )

I’m so glad that I grew up in an era when the imagination station between my ears was much more advanced than staring into any video game that the youngsters zombie on today. And, on top of that, I exercised my entire body in my playtimes and not just my thumbs, such as today’s generation of children do. It was sure fun, in those days, to enjoy being a Norwegian Farmer’s Son. πŸ˜‰

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