Make-believe was our most important entertainment equipment, our XBox mindcrafting soft technology some six decades ago.
Graphic display was called “imagination” spontaneously projected on the screen of the visual brain. Sound effects were produced on the spot. Some–like rolls of caps–were from props, most were monauralÂ engine sounds and sirens, whoops and whinnies, by mouth of course.
The memories of childhood play are still in there somewhere, and for some odd reason, this weird three-dimensional decaying tree stump brought all that back to the surface a few weeks back Â as Ann and I walked a high seldom-visited logging road above the pasture.
I insisted I should stop and take this picture. She did not understand why I wanted it. I didn’t either. Something in this ragged rotting root evoked a memory. I only retrieved that story when I got the image home and gazed atÂ it on the monitor for some while. Then it came to life.
I could see toy soldiers or cowboys and Indians doing battle from the parapets or inside the keepsÂ and secret chambers of that old stump. What memory had seen that the eye at first could not was a stage produced by nature where a six year old mind creates his own epic adventureÂ with heros and villains, crisis and resolution.
Three dimensional! Lasts for years! All natural! No batteries required! Not available in a store near you!
Where did your imagination make stories as a child? Odds are very high that it was outdoors and that you spend untold hours there.