As I suspected, everyone who commented remembers dreaming of flying. Why is it that we humans all seem to have that dream? Is it some primordial memory from a distant common ancestor, some prehistoric flying squirrel, that has lodged in our subconscious all these millions of years later? Or is it simply an aspirational fantasy, something we hopelessly earthbound primates all yearn for? And why is it that, as I’ve aged, I lost that dream? It’s been years since I’ve had it, and I, would pay handsomely to wake again one morning with the sweet sensation of soaring through the clouds still fresh, even if it was only a nocturnal fantasy, soon to be replaced by the humdrum realities of the day.
My dreams of flying always had a more realistic basis: I would “swim” through the air, and when I stopped moving my arms, I would slowly subside back to earth. But of course, I was just as keen on flying as you were. In fact, Peter Pan as much as Superman was my model. I once broke a bone jumping off the back of a couch.
And I thought I was the only one who had these flying dreams…and still do once in awhile. It’s a great feeling, no? And a welcome change from the more common “frightmares.”
You still have the flying dream? Man, am I jealous.
Miriam can also still fly:
I too can fly in my dreams; I always enjoy it and can even summon the feeling of power, if not the actual levitation, when I’m awake. What I never learned to do, asleep or awake, is draw, so thanks for your delightful illustrations!
I’d rather be able to fly.
Super Ed, sorry you couldn’t fly in the morning. In my youth, the girls were reading Archie, but I loved Amazing Adventures, Astounding Tales, Superman, Superboy, and my all time favorite: Supergirl.
What a wonderful story. It’s the universal human experience of not having, after all, something that you were so sure of. So many adult experiences are prefigured in childhood, and the first experience of anything is so memorable.
My cousin Alan adds:
I don’t remember the horror comics but I do remember the 3-D Superman one. It had a similar effect on me. However, my attempts to fly involved putting on a magic cape (actually, a bath towel knotted at the throat), climbing on the roof of my house and jumping off the eave. Fortunately, there was grass below and I never got seriously hurt, except for my ego. Flying was as elusive for me as it was for you and still to this day as devoutly wished for (second only to being able to play a musical instrument)!
Not to argue, but you did have a collection of horror comics. You also introduced me to Mad Magazine, much to my parents’ dismay. I used to jump off the roof, too, wearing a bath towel as a cape. I did once rig a bed sheet as a parachute, and it actually worked–until Mom got suspicious about the grass stains.
My blog post about the Kennedy-Nixon debates of 1960 drew a number of comments, as well.
I saw JFK in Palm Beach in 1960 when he was a candidate (I was a mere babe) and later on Long Island when he was President-elect. Handsome and charismatic even at a distance. I was smitten.
My grandfather came to live with us after he was widowed in 1958. Literally playing with my Erector Set at Grandpa’s knee during that debate. He was a massive man 6′ 8″ and remember clearly him levering his bulk up and out of his custom built chair, lumbering over to shut off the television. “Here’s proof boy that politics is just show business for ugly people like that d#%n Nixon!” That image and saying have lived on and I smile recalling it with every debate I’ve listened to in the years since.
Strange what we remember and what we don’t. I’d never fully realized that there was belief that the election was “stolen” that far back. I do remember I supported Nixon because I was an Eisenhower fan.
However, I’ve long posited that the 60’s and the early part of the 70’s, from an historical perspective, will one day prove to be a defining time in the Nation’s development and psyche. “Peace, Love, Dope”, Vietnam, assassinations, distrust of government, hippies, civil rights, integration, riots.
Our generation “came of age” in very turbulent times. I frequently question if we are the better for it.
I think many of us who lived through the turbulence of the sixties and early seventies now wonder whether we learned or accomplished anything.
Finally, the previous story about the Sinai Campaign produced these responses:
Though I don’t remember the details that way you do, the family dynamics are burned into my memory. We went to NY that weekend. Being the only grandchildren on my father’s side, my brother, sister and I were the light of my grandparents’ eyes. When we got there, my grandfather was glued to the television. Soon he and my father began to argue, which ended with my father saying, “No big deal, it will be over quickly,” and my grandfather shouting, “Get out! You are no son of mine!” We were quickly shepherded out of the apartment, completely confused. I will never forget my grandfather’s anger.
Wow, Ed, you’re already at Nr. 28. I can’t tell you how much your vignettes and stories mean to me. I was a little too young to be cognizant of this war. What hit home with me, of course, was the Six-Day War, which I was old enough to follow almost minute by minute.
Then, I remember having more a feeling of elation without any of the complexities; today, however, I feel only the complexities with no elation.
I think you’re speaking for many of us, Beth. Elation is hard to come by if you’re paying attention to the news these days.