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The Blog Brothers

Two Black-Irish-American brothers from the mythical city of Albany, New York ponder their 20th century adventures from either side of the Pacific Ocean; Bob in Kyoto, Japan and Mick in Santa Barbara, California.

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Ghost in the Glass

Under that bridge across the Normanskill was where I first heard the word "television," at the same time as I saw my very first television, which looked something like the one at left, a 1949 model. Must have been around then that I saw it. I remember the cabinet as being longer and narrower though...

Strictly a radio/movie kid, on that occasion I was playing with kids whose father I guess belonged briefly to Sheehy-Palmer VFW Post #6776, of which Dad was one of the founders and the first Commander (as per the photo below). I probably met the kids at a Post event and went down to their house to play, the only time I ever went there, I guess they must have moved away not long after. They lived under (or very nearly under) the bridge in a very ramshackle house, but there right at the front of their living room was what they called a "television." It had a round screen, with a magnifying lens in front.

They turned it on to show me, and ve-e-r-r-r-y slowly there appeared a ghost in the glass, a blurry movement of light I couldn't make out in the day, especially up close. It seemed to work, though, and to be different from movies, but it wasn't entertaining, whatever it was. I was not impressed. We went outside to play. Within just a few years, though, I'd be hanging around other kids houses that had TVs, in hopes of getting even a single glimmer of Howdy Doody.


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