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The Day Superman Flew Away


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Back in my very early years, I had this toy. It was a superman glider, with a cool

slingshot. Superman would fly clear across parking lots, over houses and trees....


But the coolest thing was, he would fly all the way to our vacation destinations, with

me holding him out the window. I learned a lot about flight dynamics in those years.

Once, we were going up Fayette Mtn,, on a horseshoe turn, overlooking the edge

of the mountain that loomed over the New River far below. It was chilly that night,

and the rain was roaring down. All the times I flew superman out the window, this one

night was the most challenging. My hand out the window kept getting cold. Stupid rain.


One horseshoe turn, then another. My parents kept trying to convince me to quit,

and roll the window up. I had gone through some excuses - can't roll it up, hand is too cold....

arm too stiff, window frozen... to no avail.


There came a time when they started being funny, talking about if I was really their kid or not.


When they started that conversation, it was kinda close to the time when they acted serious

that maybe they should stop and make me walk up the mountain. And, I ran out of excuses.


They always said the school said I had a very high IQ. Not a very smart kid, apparently, or I could have

come up with some kind of excuse to get superman flying all the way up the mountain.

So, I gave it up. But just then, the wind and the roaring rain caught superman, and

he slipped out of my numbed grasp - and flew over the guardrail, over the mountain, and out of sight.


My protests that we had to stop so I could go get him back were met with headshaking,

and more quiet jokes about how maybe when I was born, I got switched with the perfect kid they should have had. Funny..."ha... ha".


But despite my pleas, getting them to stop so I could run a rescue mission wasn't an option.


Some day, some archeologist with some fancy scanner that detects plastic, will find superman,

and he'll yell "Hey JOE, I found another great piece of fossil evidence of some dumb kid holding

his hand out the window til it turns blue! Yeah, must be two hundred years old !!!"


Some things are just small enough to not be lifechanging, but still an annoying memory



you just don't let them affect how you see the future. Like previous Browns' losing seasons,

with "coaches" who shouldn't have been, and systems like "run, run, pass" every down that

even a kid who lost his superman would know was stupid, and dimwitted choices in the drafts..


You don't forget, but you just see the humor in it all, and you don't let it ruin how you see the future.


So, I see a big win over the Dolphins, and the best season since before '99 for the Browns.

I see the other teams shaking their heads on the sidelines, in disgust that the Browns will win

the game handily. I see the playoffs. Say, I wonder if I could find that superman toy on ebay....

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man, you should write a book.


here's a long story for ya.


i'm in wurzboro, germany at like 22 years old. they assigned me to the S3 section of our signal company cuz i was an illustrator. i did the kasernse's signage, did the charts and overheads for the six week war games called reforger where i drove for a captain. so i became friends with the other drivers....some driving the battalion commander and some the first sergeant......didn't matter we all partied together.


so after setting up camp in the german white forest (which took us 2 days..considering land lines, and stoves with the generators running electric for our callcomm) they put everyone in a german high school gymnasium with the lt.col. giving us the oldA" everyone here has done a great job, take a shower and get some sleep cuz tomorrow will bring you another day, which you might not like.


it literally took these schmuggs 1/2 to pass out. at least a hundred guys snoring their asses off.


all of a sudden i got a denmark thrown at me. i turned and looked and saw my two other driver friendes already up and heaeding for the door. i think i made it to them in under 30 secs. got in my jeep, bought a rack of the local monk brew and acted up all night long. i mean getting on the US military radio and sayung shit like breaker breaker one-nine looking for some hookers..etc.etc.


snuck in the gym about a 1/2 hour before wake up call and no one knew shit.


i was one lucky dude. guess it's the girl i'm livin with.

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