Lawson writes . . . sharing thoughts and memories

June 17, 2011

The Red Wagon

Filed under: Uncategorized — lawsonjolly @ 5:00 am

I was sitting in the shade, taking a break from some yard work.  Close by my chair was my red wagon.  A quick glimpse at the wagon set my mind in motion.  Oh, the memories that came back.

Do you remember the little red wagon of your childhood?  But not just any red wagon!  I am referring to that American classic, the Radio Flyer!  Now those red wagons were the wagons!  It was like if you didn’t have a Radio Flyer, you really did not have a real wagon.

I was fortunate to have one.  Now, I confess that I didn’t have the big model!  The #18 was the wagon of choice.  It was a tad larger than mine.  There were several models — models referred only to size.  I don’t remember the number on my wagon, but I do know it was not the large model!  But . . . it was still a Radio Flyer, and of course it was red.

That wagon was like a companion.  Before I learned to ride a bike, the wagon was my mode of transportation.  From our house on the hill, I could coast down to the village.  I always took it with me to bring home things from the grocery store or lumber yard.  Of course, the wagon would not coast uphill.  That meant I had to pull the wagon back home!

Even after I learned to ride a bike and got my first bike, I would often tie a rope to the handle or tongue of the wagon and pull it behind me.  I never knew when I might find something  I wanted to bring home.  It did take a little experience to realize that the rope needed to be tight between the wagon and the bike, or the wagon had a tendency to pull up beside the bike when going down hill!

I can’t remember whatever happened to that wagon.  Perhaps it is in an antique store somewhere!  Many of them are collector’s items.  A few years ago, I saw one on the street that a neighbor was throwing away.  I got there before the garbage collectors!  It was the small Radio Flyer like I had as a boy.  It only had a small dent on the side.  It had some age on it because it had belonged to the children of the neighbor.  They were now all in high school or college.  And such a wagon was in high demand by collectors.  I used it some in the yard, but I was too protective of it to allow it to be abused.  At several yard sales we had, many people would see it and offer to buy it.  So many people have memories of the red wagon!

The Radio Flyer was the first steel wagon to be produced.  Andrew Pasin began producing these in 1927.  He named it the Radio Flyer because of  his fascination with the radio and flight.  The Radio Flyer has been the source of poems and featured in movies.  It is truly an American icon.

But back to my red wagon in my yard!  It is not the wagon of my childhood.  This red wagon is from Tractor Supply.  It is the size of the Radio Flyer #18, but it has larger sides — and mesh sides and floor.  It carries my work equipment from the garage . . . and aids it hauling various material.  It does have the tongue for me to pull it across the yard.  And I suppose if I got on the hill in front of the house, I could coast down the hill.  But I learned as a boy — I would have to pull it back up the hill!  (But there are more obvious reasons why I will not get in the wagon and go down the hill!)

I guess we all like to remember the past.  And for this, not so young guy, I have a little red wagon today!

But life . . . maturity . . . requires that I not seek to recapture those items of yester year.  I must focus on the things and demands of adulthood.  I must not think or act like a child.  They were glorious days, but as an adult there are responsibilities.  In my faith, I cannot remain as a child, but must exhibit a maturity.  Life today has commitments — those expectations my Lord has of me.  May I think like an adult — live like an adult — express commitment as an adult — and act in maturity that honors my Christ.

“When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child.  When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me.”  (1 Corinthians 13:11) 

Note to all who receive my blog automatically via email:  Many of you have not realized that all 400 blogs are available through the archives.  However, to get access to these, you need to go to my website.  When you access a blog, you see the format to the right that gives access to the archives.  You can click on a year . . . then a particular month . . . when the calendar for that month appears, move your cursor over a particular date and the name of the blog will appear.  I regret that I had not made known to you the availability of past blogs.  Go to





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