2.13.2021 – allow daylight dreams

allow daylight dreams
drag away to far-off shores
seeking adventures

Only too well I recalled characteristic incidents of my school days.

Then countless times I was reproved by the teachers for sitting with eyelids held widely open but with eyes entirely oblivious to surroundings.

For I was allowing daylight dreams to drag me away to far-off shores and on and ever onwar,d seeking hairraising adventures among strange peoples — until the harsh words of my enraged preceptors rudely tore me from the willful neglect of my lessons.

Imagine my shock when I picked up a copy of From coast to coast with Jack London only to find myself reading a word-for-word description of myself in school.

From coast to coast with Jack London was written by Leon Ray Livingston.

Mr. Livingston was better known as A-No.1.

That was his hobo mark.

Mr. Livingston was famous as a hobo when the 17 year old Jack London talked him into letting him tag along on a trip from New York to Oakland.

Mr. Livingston’s book wasn’t published until a year after Mr. London’s death.

I was thinking about a traveling life and hobos during the depression era so I got into the google.

That led me to Mr. Livingston.

That led to this book, I mean, who could resist picking up and paging through a copy even if just virtually, of a book titled From coast to coast with Jack London.

And that led me to the first paragraph.

And that first paragraph wasn’t about A-No.1 at all.

It was about me.

The countless times I was reproved by the teachers for sitting with eyelids held widely open but with eyes entirely oblivious to surrounding.

For some reason this little memory has been in my mind for nearly forever.

This took place back in 3rd grade around 1968 or so.

I had recently watched the TV show, The Beverly Hillbillies.

Mind you this was at night when it was a prime time show, not yet in endless day time reruns.

Jed Clampett wanted to call home to Bugtussle and was having a heck of time getting the long distance operator to connect him.

Jed then listed a bunch of other towns in the vicinity and finally mentions the town of Sibley.

When the operator still could not locate these places Jed says in wonderment, “Ma’am, Sibley is the County Seat.!”

I thought about this phrase County Seat.

I worked out that it meant the city was the Capitol City of a County.

I lived in Kent County, Michigan.

I lived in the big city of Grand Rapids.

I raised my hand and my Third Grade teacher, Miss Reynolds called my name and I asked, “Is Grand Rapids the County Seat of Kent County.”

Miss Reynolds just kind of stared a me real peculiar like.

I think she might have nodded her head slowly and might have mumbled yes.

See, as I recall it, we were in the middle of a spelling test at the time.

She was calling out words.

We were trying to spell them on paper.

And I was thinking about the phrase County Seat.

The countless times I was reproved by the teachers for sitting with eyelids held widely open but with eyes entirely oblivious to surrounding.

The next week I was sent to the 4th grade for the afternoon.

Not for my benefits.

For Miss Reynolds.

From coast to coast with Jack London
by Livingston, Leon Ray, b. 1872

Publication date 1917
Topics London, Jack, 1876-1916, Tramps
Publisher Erie, Pa. : The A-no 1 Publishing Company

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