Exploring Alley Oop’s Home Circa 1947

When my mom left her second husband near Apache Junction, Arizona  to move near my granddad’s place at Causey, New Mexico, I was considerable upset about it all.  I’d become overfond of the Arizona guy, liked him a lot despite his human flaws that bothered my mom.

Time proved my level of upset couldn’t be handled by beating it out of me, nor by any of the other usual ways people tried back then to nudge a kid back into being seen and not heard.  The Runaways, 1947

My first step-dad [Arizona] was fond of reading the Alley Oop comic strip to me and I was a huge fan.  Alley was a cave man skipping forward and backward in time thanks to a 20th Century scientist.  Alley even had a 20th Century lady friend named Oola. 

About the only thing I’d brought with me from Arizona was my stack of Alley Oop comic strips.  We’d travelled light across the desert.  And when we arrived in Causey one of the jobs my sisters had was reading those Alley Oops to me, trying to bring up my spirits.  Which I suppose it did until they’d finished reading them to me.

Something more permanent had to be done, and my granddad decided to have a shot at it.  He promised to take me to visit Alley’s home.  Mesa Verde, Colorado.

What a trip that must have been, me pestering him whether we were there yet, how much further before we’d see Alley’s home.  I don’t know how long we stayed, but I never forgot old Alley and his home.  I still had one picture of the cave dwelling he took back then until Y2K.

And of the hundreds of ancient ruins, documented and undocumented, I’ve poked around in during my life, I’ve never visited one, found one, without thinking to myself with a smile that Alley Oop might have lived there, visited there ahead of me.

When Mel King and I were exploring the ruin on Gobbler’s Knob and were driving back to Socorro when he reached into his daypack for something, came out with a human skull it was the first thing I said to him.  “What the hell is that?  You packed off Oola’s skull.  Get it the hell out of this truck!” 

I screeched onto the shoulder and he hid it behind a cedar until  we’d be headed back to Gobber’s Knob so he could put it back where it belongs.

Nowadays I think I have more in common with Alley Oop than with any modern human being.  If there was ever a right time for me to pop out of the gene pool it would probably have been more appropriate temporally in some other Universe where Alley Oop lived and breathed.  It made more sense than this one.

Old Jules

 

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10 responses to “Exploring Alley Oop’s Home Circa 1947

  1. Love this. Oola – la! Love the Anasazi ruins, simply amazing. Always appreciate you taking me back to our onetime home.

    • Morning Bela: Good seeing you here. Hydrox, Niaid, Shiva the Cow Cat and Tabby send their regards. There’s a magnetism about that country out there I haven’t found anywhere else I’ve been, thinks I. Gracias, Jules

  2. I’m one that was born to the wrong time period. I belong a hundred years or more in the past. Alley Oop was one of my favorite comic strips. Never missed a one from when Mamma read them to me until I left home. Didn’t see them after that. Thanks for the reminders.

    • Morning Mary. Hope you’re living in your proper time this morning. I’ve frequently been surprised to learn how many people grew up deprived of Alley Oop. Many of them don’t recognize what’s missing in their lives as a result, too. Glad for your visit. Jules

  3. Fascinating. I always thought Alley Oop was drawn by the same people who did Gasoline Alley, but apparently not. Similar time, similar art, similar name, but that’s all. I had forgotten that Oop was a time traveler. Very cool!

    Should have kept that skull. I keep the ones I find. 😉

  4. Marvin: I don’t keep human skulls. Thanks for the visit. Jules

  5. Alley Oop was one of my favorite comic book characters (still is – wish he was still around) mainly because of Dinny. I wanted a dinosaur just like him to ride. And I always loved the Hollywood Argyles’ tribute to Alley Oop. Thanks.

  6. thanks for a good read

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