It’s late July, it’s hot in the morning, it’s hot in the evening; I’m in the South. After parking my car in the lot to go into my office building, I noticed a June Bug on the car next to me. Picking him up, I felt the familiar sensation of a cocklebur crawling around in my hand.
He was green – the type of June Beetle I am accustomed to in the Deep South – the kind I would tie a string carefully around his leg and fly. Batteries, Bluetooth or a wireless connection were not required.
I’ve never really thought of June Bugs as pests, but a lot of folks do. These fellows spend the winter as larvae, deep in the dirt and then start popping out from June to August.
In the last couple of years, researchers have used June Bugs to demonstrate the ability to develop tiny vehicles/robots that can continuously generate their own power with their wings. The research gets a little deeper, but I don’t think June Bugs will be used to spy on you in your backyard yet.
After heading from the parking lot toward the door with the June Bug in hand, I thought about the many times I had “flown June Bugs” as a child. As a matter of fact on this hot July morning, I was percolating the feeling of having a rope tied around one of my legs up around my groin. I decided it was best not to take him inside and try to locate a string to fly him around the office.
Honestly, by the time I made it to the door, I decided we are all pretty much June Bugs on strings being flown by people, jobs and technology that we think we can’t live without. I felt the rope around my leg getting tighter, as I was being drug by my leg into my office.
Sitting down, I wasn’t ready to give up my computer or my cell phone, but I would have liked to hear some sort of music from the 1960’s, possibly Creedence Clearwater Revival. You know what I mean, some of feeling of being free.
All kinds of things can be said and points can be made on how simple times were when we were younger. Was the world a safer place? Did we have less to worry about? Will the Cubs ever win a World Series?
Yes, Yes and No.
That is just my opinion, but the last time I checked, I was entitled to it.
I’m never going to be young again, I have to accept that fact. If I want to fly a June Bug on a string, I can still do it. Folks might look at me like I’m a nut; I can accept and revel in that.
As far as the sensation of a rope around my leg and being held down or captured by a number of things, I guess that is actually just in my mind.
After staring at the wall a few minutes, I turned on the computer, checked my phone for messages and put away my childish thoughts. In a little while, my good friend and co-worker for over 20 years knocked on the door and took my mind off the June Bug.
Didn’t you have kids in your neighborhood growing up that would knock on your door or come right in your house and share ridiculous idea with you? In my case, it would usually involve digging a hole, building a fort or destroying something with firecrackers or rocks. We usually did it.
This co-worker and friend sits in the office next to me and is just like one of those kids growing up. He is also well-educated, intelligent and very good at what he does, but he’s still a kid at heart.
When he came into my office, he was excited. He joyfully noted, “Look what I have…” He was holding a cardboard box. He went into what good shape it was in and how strong the cardboard was.
“We could do something with it; we could make something.”
Then we wasted a little time discussing how it wasn’t large enough to make a fort or trap anyone. We determined it would make a good fort for plastic army men – he noted he had an air rifle at home, but no firecrackers.
The sensation of the rope around my leg seemed to go away.
Good friends that won’t grow up and won’t let you grow up are the secret to it all. Yes, there is still the job, the mortgage, the college tuition to worry about, but every once in a while if you just think about what you could do with a cardboard box, I think you’ll be ok.
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