Friday, March 07, 2008

A 3WW memory: A 3rd Grader on Stilts

It's been a while since I've done Bone's 3WW writing exercise. This week’s Three Word-Wednesday challenge is to write something using these three words: Rest, Sidewalk, Twice. I’m not sure why, but for some reason the word sidewalk brought back images of me as third grader walking around the neighborhood on stilts.

Dad and I spent part of Saturday afternoon building a set of stilts for a Cub Scout project. When done and after a little practice, I found myself for the only time in my life as the tallest boy in my class. These wooden stilts gave me an eight inch lift. Soon, I was walking up and down the sidewalk, seeing how far I could go before I had to stop for a rest. Twice, I walked around the block, from Bishop Street down to Warren Street and back. Other kids tried them out, but I remained the king of the stilts, once staying up for a thousand steps. It wasn’t long before I was walking down to the Seabolts, who lived two blocks over. They had a son my age (I can’t remember his name), but I walked to their house because I really wanted to show off for his father, the PE teacher at Walnut Hills Elementary. He was impressed and encouraged me to bring the stilts to school to show others. I was always looking for a way to “stand out” in class and on that occasion, I really did.

I’m not sure what happened to those stilts. I probably gave them to Bubba and Denise when we moved back to North Carolina. Dad made us get rid of a lot of stuff and I never remember seeing the stilts after the move. It’s probably good because later in my life I learned that he only good use that came from the ability to walk around on stilts was to work in a circus (of which I had no interest) or even worse, to become a drywaller and spend your time mudding tape on ceilings.


  1. I'm glad to see someone posted after me :)

    During "free day" in PE in grade school, I used to LOVE getting to play on the stilts. They were plastic, but oh so fun. I'd kind of forgotten about those until now. Amazing how little things can trigger our memories.

  2. So you learned something from just walking around on stilts but not from sitting out in the boonies, in the cold, with bug bites, nearly dehydrated and with a fake Indian Chief involved? :-)

  3. Don't you have a picture of yourself on stilts?

  4. I had a pogo stick in my cellar that I was pretty good at but no future there either...

  5. I had a friend who had a unicycle and he used to ride that thing around like a madman. But again, where else could you go with that talent but the circus.

    Nice memory, Sage. "Sidewalk" make me think of being a kid, too, though I didn't wind up going in that direction with my post.

  6. sidewalk for me is hopscotch . . . nice nostalgic post, sage

  7. TC: Plastic stilts? never heard of 'em

    Murf, I learned plenty from that experience--only I wasn't out in the woods in the cold (if it had been cold, there would have been less bugs)

    Kenju, no, I know of no such photos, most of my pics as a kid was taken on Easter Sunday and I was in a kid suit in front of an azelea :(

    Paul, what is it with all these skills and there being no use for them!

    Bone, sidewalks do seem to conjure up images of childhood

  8. Diane, you jumped in as I was commenting! Hopscotch and chalk art (things my sister did and daughter does on sidewalks)

  9. Stilts... hmmmmm, too high definition for me but looks good on you, sage. :o)

  10. Sage, I have photos of my son in his Easter suit in front of azaleas! I'll have to find that one for my Easter post!

    Michele sent me this time. Don't you want to move back south and get out of that cold, cold air!?

  11. I'd like to see a photo of you on those stilts. :)

    We have a festival every year and there's always some clown (a real Bozo) walking the parade on stilts. I'm always amazed at how well performers can get around on those things.

  12. Alas, I was always the kid who toppled over during stilts day in P.E. Thanks for bringing back memories of gut-wrenching failure.



  13. I have always been fascinated by stilts and I always wondered if they hurt, you know like high high spike heels hurt us ladies after a bit?

  14. I've always thought it must be difficult walking on stilts and some where I have a photograph of my sons demonstrating their skill to a French visitor. I really mustn't spend the rest of the day looking for it:)
    Michele says hi!

  15. Nice memory. I used to jump in the sidewalks. Now I see my nephew do it. It sure feels good.

  16. I'm a pogo stick girl; although, I wear stilts to work every week. I call them my Jessica Simpsons!

    The one on the left, but mine are tan leather not suede... ;D

  17. Karen, are you saying that I'm short? :)

    Kenju, no, I don't miss the South that much, I do miss the mountains

    Scarlet, If I grew out my hair, and dyed it red, I'd be a perfect Bozo

    Mr. Sherman, sorry for the bad memories...

    Deana, stilts didn't hurt unless you fell, as for heels I'd not know how they feel, I just know they look good :)

    Pi, Post the pic of your son!

    Gautami, were you the type that made sure you avoid the cracks in the sidewalk or stepped on the cracks as a tempter of fate?

    Maggie, nice shoes! Thanks for feeding my foot fetish this morning :)

  18. Never had a stilt experience but sidewalks remind me of a unicycle experience.