When I was a kid (I know I’ve never really grown up), the town of Clyde was our play ground. I would say that the summer of my 8th grade year (between 8-9th) had to be one of the funnest times of my youth….at the least the only one that I can remember.
I ran around with friends Randy Miller, Mike Porter and quite a few others. We were the cool kids of Clyde (or so we thought). We were the hoodlums of the town…smoking cigarettes and what ever else we could get our hands on 🙂 It was the time of BMX bikes, off-road trails by whirlpool and the Clyde Community Park. Sometimes we’d hang out there all day long, riding jumping smoking and whatever mischief we could do. I wonder what kids do now…I mean you never see them out there getting dirty or even riding bikes. There would be so many of us, sometimes it would look like a motorcycle gang (except on BMX Bikes)…you don’t see that today. I just hope they’re not all sitting home playing X-Box etc.
We were so eager to grow up back then. We all thought our older siblings or parents had it made. We thought life was all about getting rich and having fun. We never thought about how you got rich. Hell $100 was rich to us…really $20 was. Life was great if you had enough change to stop at Steve’s new Stand and get a soda and bag of chips and hang out in the back room amongst the stacks and stacks of old news papers. Then back to our bikes and the trails. Mike was the best of all of us on the BMX…he rode a Mongoose (I think I remember that right), mine was a Buckeye Mart Special. He could jump higher and go faster than all of us. He didn’t seem to have any fear. Me, I was always afraid to jump too high or too far….it rarely turned out good for me. We rode our bikes everywhere but the best times were riding to Whirlpool Park in Green Springs to go swimming. That was about and hour or so ride down CR 175 and past Gene’s Carry-Out, where we’d stop and get a drink and buy smoke bombs to set off later…while causing trouble :). We’d swim all day long and then make the long ride back to Clyde.
It’s kinda funny when I look back and see the kid I was and think, what happened to each of us that made us turn out with the life we have now. We could have easily turned into the bad kid that grew up on the downside of life. What made each of us change when we got to high school…change our ways. I woke up one day and said I want to do good in school and then started getting good grades. I said I was going to stop causing trouble and did. Each of us for the most part now live good lives with families. It’s just weird looking back, I would have never thought that. I wonder why that didn’t happen to all our friends…it wasn’t social economics….we all came from different back grounds. I never really thought about that until know….I don’t have the answer. I’m glad it worked out for us…I hope it worked out for all of us.