Remember This? Army Men

001_ATT222 (1)Army men were the bomb – my most explosive nostalgia memory. I had all kinds – Civil War army men, Revolutionary War army men and WWII army men. For years, I enjoyed placing my toy miniature plastic soldiers in fresh war scenes concocted in the dirt battlefields of my backyard.

But, as I got older, there came a time when my revered toy troops needed to be reinvented, recycled. My middle school friend, Paul, showed me how – by burning them. Oh, the seductive, searing sound that drops of molten plastic make when they drip to the ground!

But playing with fire proved far too tempting for my comrade and I one afternoon. Dousing the heads of the army men in gas, then the grass below, the gas can accidentally caught on fire. The rest of the story is chronicled in my memoir, Maybe Boomer (although you can read more about kindling friendships in the introduction to Chapter Five, Friendship”).

Did anyone else out there nearly burn their house down by accident?


Filed under Remember This?

4 responses to “Remember This? Army Men

  1. I never nearly burned down the house. But my brother and I burned the faces off some of our Star Wars figurines on our front porch via a magnifying glass and the high July Sun. Good to know we weren’t the only plastic pyros. Thanks for sparking those memories.

    • Do I detect a touch of tomboy in you? Otherwise, you’d have been burning dolls or plastic ballerinas or something. I like you all the more for your antics. I, too, did the magnifying glass routine, either on slugs (over the line, I know) or on the unused gun powder dots from my red rolls of cap gun strips. Remember those? Hmm-m … another blog post is being born from this memory.

  2. Debra Marrs

    A fun memory, Mike. My own pyro mania was satisfied primarily by burning the trash every night in the burn barrel–something only rural kids of the 60-70s probably understand.

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