Remembering time gone by in this month's column.

If there were tests for ADHD when I was a child, they probably would have said that I had it. ADHD is a problem with inattentiveness, hyperactivity, impulsivity or a combination thereof. Yep, that’s me! When I was a youngster, I was very active and impulsive, but curious.

However, attentiveness wasn’t a problem; my dad kept that in check with a razor strap. If my memory is correct, he only used it twice – and it wasn’t for sharpening his safety razor; it was for getting my attention. If parents were allowed to use more discipline today, there wouldn’t be so many out-of-control children. Dad never abused me in any way, however; when he gave me an instruction, I knew I better follow it to the letter. The same went for mom. She would just say, “Your dad will take care of it when he gets home.” Enough said! I always respected my elders.

Inquisitiveness was another matter. Anything that I didn’t understand, I wanted to know how it worked and why. I was into everything. If it could come apart, I took it apart. I usually could put it back together, though, and it would work.

When I was about 3 years old, my dad and a friend of his were working on the faucets in the bathroom. I was trying to watch, and, of course, was in the way. I climbed into the wicker clothes hamper and watched them work. After a while, I became sleepy, and just settled down in the hamper, and went to sleep; the lid closed on top of me. When dad finished working on the lavatory, not knowing that I was asleep in the hamper, he just left.

Sometime later dad realized that it was quiet, so he started looking for me. Not finding me, he and mom were getting worried. They looked in the closets and everywhere they could think of that I might hide. They called the friend to see if I had gone home with him. He then came back to help look for me. They were looking and calling, with no luck finding me. We lived on a farm, so they knew I hadn’t gone far. Back then, all telephones were on a party line, meaning, when the phone rang, what one person heard, anyone who picked up a phone heard. Soon, the neighbors were over to our home, looking for me. When I was rested, and woke up from my cozy hamper, I was wondering what all the excitement was about. Everyone was quite relieved to find that I was OK. Needless to say, I didn’t go to sleep in the hamper ever again.

When I sleep, I sleep hard. I only wake up when I am rested or if someone shakes me. I can sleep almost anywhere, anytime. I was one of the few people in the army who could sleep standing up. Fortunately, however, I can’t get into a clothes hamper anymore.

I grew up among adults, doing adult things, so I didn’t have a real childhood. I was raised around oilfield roughnecks who drank, fought and cussed, and their nature was to fight, tearing up clubs and bars. Child experts say that children grow up like their environments. I don’t agree. My parents had no bad habits, and I grew up not seeing the necessity of fighting, drinking and cussing.

Don’t get me wrong – these vices aren’t against my religion; it is just my choice. Besides, Bess probably wouldn’t let me back in the house.