George's childhood creativity

When George and Tom were younger, they would build things together – a “fun house” and an igloo. They needed someone to test those on, and because I was so little, it was me. “Oh boy my big brothers want me to play with them,” I’d think. George with his mother Mary and siblings Joan, Terry and Tommy.So they built a fun house (more like a house of horrors), put me in a milk box, and moved me up and down tracks made from fence posts, having me go through tunnels, tossing boards with nails in them at me, not to be mean, just testing it out. As Tommy later said, I wasn’t hurt.

After a snowstorm, they built an igloo. To ensure its somewhat stability, they made ice atop it, decided to test it. They told me to sit inside the igloo all the way toward the back. Again, “Oh boy, my big brothers want me to play with them.” They jumped up and down on it (I kept hearing the thuds). Luckily it never caved in. Strangely I never felt fear. Our mother called us in for a Campbell’s chicken noodle soup lunch to warm up (unaware of my precarious status), and that was that.

George always loved music, and for those who remember the song “The Slop,” he could dance. Once he and his teenage friends had a “beatnik” party in our basement. Some had bongos, all wearing sunglasses, listening intently to songs, such as “Midnight in Moscow” and “Walk Don’t Run.” I, in my 11-years-old or so self, sat on the cellar steps in awe of teenagers, until George chased me up the stairs.

A deep joy in poetry

"Deep happy joy" is a story by George's brother Thomas Lanigan Schmidt about George's love of poetry:§ion=Article


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