Flailing Arms, Skinned Knees

Photos by James D. McKeown III, courtesy Steven McKeownReader Steve McKeown sent me a selection of family photos taken by his father, James D. McKeown III. Time and storage haven’t done the negatives any favors, but that doesn’t keep us from enjoying the era they captured.

I don’t know who this girl is, but I give her credit for negotiating the cracks in the sidewalk without having the knees ripped out of her pants from falling. Or, she may have just started out.

Cracks weren’t the only problem

I remember those steel-wheeled skates. If the cracks didn’t get you, then they would come loose from your shoes and turn sideways while still strapped to your foot. If you cranked down hard with the metal skate key to keep that from happening, all you would accomplish would be to bend the sole of your shoe, causing the same result.

I hope the girl made it to adulthood in one piece, but the way she’s holding her right hand was an invitation for a broken wrist if she tried to catch herself while flying through the air like Supergirl.

Thanks, McKeown Family for the use of your photos.

4 Replies to “Flailing Arms, Skinned Knees”

  1. My sister Susan McKeown Watkins on S. Henderson Street in Cape Girardeau, Mo. Went on to a distinguished career as a teacher and administrator in Farmington, Mo., where her husband was a teacher and superintendent. They had second careers on staff at SEMO U before moving to the St. Louis area. They are having a happy retirement including two married and accomplished children with grandchildren.

    1. We lived at 140 S Henderson Jane. I spent a lot of days doing the same thing as your sister. I knew this was not a picture of me but it looks like the same sidewalk, cracks and all.

  2. We used to skate in the basement.was no sidewalks and was only a gravel street and gravel driveway. We may have went up on Hopper road as it was blacktopped, but I can’t remember that for sure.

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