Any little boy or girl from the early 1960s can tell you who Thor was.
But if you don’t know, he was a super hero of the comic books and now of the movies. He was big, tall and strong. He also had a big hammer, and when he would hit things, bolts of lightning would fly in all directions. It was great for a little boy in make-believe land. One mid-summer day in 1962 would be the first and last day that I would ever want to play “Thor: God of Thunder.”
I still remember that day very well as I do all days with memories that were brought on by intense pain. I was 7 years old on that day. I remember running around the yard, jumping off the back porch and yelling, “I am Thor: God of Thunder.” This went on for about 10 minutes. Then I thought to myself, you can’t be Thor: God of Thunder without a big hammer. I looked all around the yard, but there was no big hammer to be found. But there was an old croquet mallet. Oh joy, I thought to myself, now I can be Thor for real. Oh joy my butt, if I had only known the pain the mallet was going to put me through I would have never picked it up.
I was Thor: God of Thunder, and on that day I could do no wrong in my eyes. In my mother’s eyes it was a different story. She had worked a third shift and was trying to get some sleep and here was this little fool running around the yard yelling, “I am Thor: God of Thunder” and it happened. I broke the mallet stick in half. Oh my God no, no, no I can’t play Thor anymore.
You have to understand the mind of a little boy from over 50 years ago. The child of that time could play make-believe all by themselves and have fun.
Thor would not be done in by just a broken stick. Boy was I wrong. Then it popped into my head. Thor throws his hammer. I was Thor and my trusty hammer I did let fly, and fly it did. But only after leaving a splinter that went into the palm of my hand. I say splinter, but it felt like a whole tree was stuck in my hand. When the splinter went in, it went all the way to the bone, bounced off it and came out about an inch from where it went in.
So picture this, you have a splinter that is about 2 inches long and as big around as two round toothpicks, and this is sticking out of your hand. Can you see it, can you feel it? I still do. Oh the joy, oh the thrill, oh the blood. Scream, you asked if I screamed? Yes I did.
I had to get it out, but I could not let my mother see it. I just knew I would get into trouble. So I go to the kitchen. I found a razor blade and a pair of tweezers. I was going to cut it out, that was all I knew to do. Here I am standing with razor blade in hand and God (my mother) opens the door. All she saw was this kid about to cut his wrist, not knowing what was taking place. She grabbed the hand with the blade in it. She got it away from me and started whipping my butt in short order. At some point in the whipping she did see the blood and thought I had cut the other wrist. Only at this point was I able to get it across to her what had happened.
I was taken to the doctor and the tree was cut out of my hand. I carried that splinter around the rest of the summer and would show it to anyone that would look at it. From that day on, super heroes in general sucked, and Thor was on the top of the list.