News From Terre Haute, Indiana

Mike Lunsford

February 8, 2010

The Off Season: Temptation sometimes comes in a 12-cent package

TERRE HAUTE — The comic books in Wilbur Hickman’s grocery store always sat in a spinning, white-metal rack that was tapered like a Christmas tree, and no less inviting than one. The rack stood just a few feet inside the glass doors that led into Wilbur’s Rosedale IGA when I was a kid, and it was a monument to boyhood temptation at 12 cents a copy.

I used to spin and read and spin and gawk and spin and peruse the comics on that stand, the grating squeak of its ungreased pedestal undoubtedly annoying the ladies who manned the nearby checkout stations. The rack was just about my only access to comic books when I was 10 or 11 and still going to the grocery with my mother in hopes of getting a box of candy cigarettes (there was no stigma about those then), a Zero bar, or red paraffin lips in exchange for helping with the overstuffed paper sacks laden with cereal boxes, canned goods and milk cartons.

Those were the days when Peter, Paul and Mary were “Blowin’ in the Wind” and the war in Vietnam was raging, of Lyndon Johnson and Walter Cronkite, and which my Great Uncle Bill summed up by saying that our country was “going to hell in a hand basket.” My older brother wore a leather jacket and listened to Bob Dylan on his 8-track tape player, my sister was into knee socks and horn-rimmed glasses, and I undoubtedly sported a pair of skinned knees and a flat top haircut.

The sound of Hickman’s still resonates in my head — the cha-ching of the brown, push-button cash registers, the ringing of a rotary dial telephone in the background, the whirring of the huge open refrigerated cases filled with turkeys and head-sized hams.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Mike Lunsford
Latest News Poll
AP Video
Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Raw: Earthquake Rocks Mexico's Gulf Coast US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Raw: Obama Eats Ribs in Kansas City Fox Dons 'Bondage Strap' Skirt at Comic-Con Raw: NH Man Held on $1M in Teen's Kidnapping
NDN Video
Heartwarming 'Batkid Begins' Documentary is Tear-Jerker Sadie Doesn't Want Her Brother to Grow Up Chapter Two: Designing for Naomi Watts Broken Water Main Floods UCLA "Maxim" Hotness! See Jessica Alba's Sizzling Spread Two women barely avoid being hit by train Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber Reportedly Came To Blows In Ibiza Meet the Man Behind Dumb Starbucks Chris Pratt Adorably Surprises Kids at a 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Screening NOW TRENDING: Peyton Manning dancing at practice "The Bachelorette" Makes Her Decision Thieves pick the wrong gas station to rob Golden Sisters on '50 Shades' trailer: 'Look At That Chest!' Staten Island Man's Emotional Dunk Over NYPD Car - @TheBuzzeronFOX GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted 'Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' Sneak Peek Florida Keys Webcam Captures Turtles Hatching Morgan Freeman Sucks Down Helium on 'Tonight Show' Robin Wright Can Dance! (WATCH)

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -


    March 12, 2010