The War of the Mighty Treehouse


by Ron Collins

August, 2000

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The ORIGINAL War of the Mighty Treehouse Story

Whatever Happened to Tree Houses? (Article)

Treehouse Links



The Beginning …Frank Lloyd Wright Revisited


It was only six feet off the ground.  In 1966 and 1967, it looked higher, though, to a twelve-year-old.  There had been a problem from the beginning.  My grand idea of a super-fortress lacked one leg.  Three perfectly round cedar trees at 90-degree angles made for a triangle, not a rectangle.  Through the genius of recruiting, however, I produced three or four friends at a moment’s notice – able-bodied youths – who were willing to sacrifice those lazy days of Summer, normally reserved for lemonade, Fruit Stripe Gum, and comic books; Frostie Root Beer and Stage Planks; Double-Cola and Moon Pies; afternoon jaunts to the Shongalo Junk Yard on their Spyder Bikes (fully equipped with a V-rroom or Za-zoom motor), delivering the Grit newspapers – or whatever suited their fancy – to select the fourth leg for the castle in the sky.


When a suitable victim was found, it became hard to imagine felling such a stately tree.  Tell that to the Legion of Super-Heroes, or whatever we were that day.  Yes…those super-heroes.  We were able to leap tall buildings in a single bound, but took an hour to chop down a tree only twelve inches in diameter; another hour to trim off all the unneeded branches; and a third to dig the hole at the “missing corner” to make sure the structure would form a perfect rectangle.  But...we were recent graduates of the Jethro Bodine “Double-Naught Spy School.”  Not old enough to run a chainsaw; just old enough to be dangerous.


Luck was on our side.  Wood for its construction seemed plentiful.  There appeared to be an abundant supply of sturdy oak planks left over from the old home that had occupied the spot where our new house was.  Actually, our house was now six years old, but still looked new.  My dad had kept the property cleared before his death.  Seemed like the man could clear more in an hour with a Kaiser blade than I could with a bulldozer.  By the time we got the fourth leg planted, I was sorta hoping for that dozer.  Well, at least it was a start.


We now had a rectangle – eight feet long, five feet wide.  After deciding that the floor beams went on the outside of the trees, rather than on the inside, the beams went up, followed by the flooring.  Now we had something to work with.  Frequent trips downtown to the Vaiden Co-op assured us that we had enough nails to complete the task.  These were not your ordinary nails, either.  They were large enough to substitute for the spike driven in the railroad by Ulysses S. Grant at Promontory Point.  Amazing what a quarter would buy back then.  Equally amazing was the fact that when we were young, we could do more in a day than we can now in a week.  To this day I haven’t figured out if it’s time-lapse or mind-lapse.  Probably both.


Mid-summer in Carroll County, Mississippi can be hard on a body.  Heat in the nineties can produce all sorts of images – visions of grandeur, if you will – of all the possibilities an architectural masterpiece such as this is capable of.  My mind was made up.  We would work until we dropped dead, or until Batman or Lost in Space came on the TV, whichever was first.  If it was our time to go, the Grim Reaper could just drop his scythe and join us.  If I died that day, I was going to the Pearly Gates with a hammer in my hand, and splinters in my ……… well, let’s just say I would have died happy.  However, if the Angel of Death had driven the Batmobile or the Jupiter 2, he would have had a better chance.  We could have used the Lost In Space Robot.


What you have to understand is, to a twelve-year-old in Vaiden, Mississippi in the 60s, girls were the least of our concerns.  Now that I look back at some of the pictures in the yearbooks – annuals, we called them back then – I can see why.  I figure that all we could do was improve.  We surely couldn’t get any worse.  Back then, it was go-karts, comic books, camping out, hunting, and whatever else we could imagine.  Girls were in the picture, though.  They were the ones that couldn’t see why we liked the go-karts, comic books, camping out, hunting, or whatever.  It was enough to make a guy shave his head, don a robe, move to the mountains, and learn to chant.  I didn’t have a robe.


The old oak boards were the type that interlocked, forming an almost-smooth surface.  Good thing too.  If this was to be a fortress, it had to be bulletproof.  Of course, far be it from us to shoot at each other with BB Guns back then.  We were told many times, just like the boy on A Christmas Story, “you’ll put your eye out, kid !”  Well, we almost did several times, but managed to survive somehow.  Yes, we learned how our Daisy Red Ryder or our Daisy Pump BB Guns could be loaded by filling our mouths with BBs, and “spitting” them into the loading chamber.  “Miss Daisy” took her wrath out on each of us more than once, but then, we didn’t believe in fighting with sticks.  Of course, other than having a pack of firecrackers go off in your hand, the sting of “Miss Daisy,” was not something you’d soon forget.


The material chosen for the roof was a specially-formulated metal (Atomic number 50 – Symbol Sn – Atomic Weight 118.69) (Tin).  It was chosen to repel aerial assaults, and to provide protection from the elements.  Ok, it was free.  Once the roof was on, there was only one area that was left open; the north wall.  We decided to use bricks, instead of wood.  The bricks were not secure, but simply stacked on top of each other, closing that end of the treehouse.  If the treehouse was attacked from the north, this wall would fall first, taking a large portion of the enemy with it.  What was left could be hurled with great accuracy in hand-to-hand combat.


A special aircraft cable was tied to a tree around the perimeter of the entranceway, and buried underground – totally oblivious to any attacker.  It then ran up the southeast leg of the building and inside, threading through secretly-designed guides (staples).  The grounds were strewn with broken glass and nails, strategically placed, so that any ground assault would be neutralized.  The cable could then be pulled, tripping the enemy  and sending him hurling into the glass and nails.  To further protect the north wall, we had mounted the powerful Mighty Mo Cannon on the roof.  This cannon could be fired remotely from inside the treehouse, sending a 3-inch ball about 30 feet into the heart of the onslaught.  We could sight it with the Super Snooper Periscope.  What we couldn’t quite figure out was how we’d get outside to reload it while under attack.  It was a single-shot.  Additional protection for the north wall came in the form of obstacles – nails, broken glass, and barbed wire placed throughout the approach to the wall.  Sharpened sticks were also driven into the ground to slow the attack.  Also, the natural terrain (Code Name: “Sticker Bushes”) was situated to prevent the enemy from advancing at a rapid pace.  Each member of our organization was trained in the art of “running the course” bare-footed – which was the proper footwear for each 12-year-old-treehouse-building-tea cake-eating-comic book-reading member of our group.  All members were sworn to secrecy, never to reveal the exact path.  But…in the event of a breech of the path through a ground attack, chemical warfare could be employed, utilizing a specially-formulated mixture designed to repel the enemy (Code Name: “Stink Bombs”).  We were also demolition experts, up-to-date on the latest pyrotechnic developments.  Back then, it was called firecrackerology, and the secret formulas were stored in the impenetrable Fort Knox Safe. These highly-explosive materials (firecrackers), often used at close range, inflicted instantaneous pain and suffering on the attacker.  Larger charges were available – M-80s and Cherry Bombs – but our original intent was to take the enemy alive.  Back then, I would have to be eliminated for divulging such top-secret information, but the 30-year moratorium on Classified Fortress Materials has now lapsed.


I can see it now.  A Super-Fortress packed with the latest arsenal, sure to strike fear in the heart of the opponent; enough firepower to destroy a small country; enough technology to avert a nuclear crisis until WE decided that one was necessary.  Strategies of war could be plotted from a centralized location, and an elite force of fighting men would emerge to wreak havoc on the enemy.  Before Intel and Microsoft, there was the powerful Thinkatron computer, loaded with Windows 0.0.  This computer was aptly named because it didn’t need anything but thought waves to activate the secret code that would annihilate the enemy (or maybe it was named that because we were supposed to think it would).  Of course, we could have consulted the Ouija Board or 8-Ball, but we were starting a “Super Friends Network,” not a “Psychic Friends Network.”  Now that the secret weaponry has been declassified, the list can be disclosed:  The Johnny Seven O.M.A. (One-Man Army); the Super Helmet 7; the 007 Attache Case; the Secret Sam Attaché Case; the Time Bomb; the AgentMZero Spy Camera/Pistol; the Johnny Eagle Pistol; and the aforementioned Mighty Mo Cannon.  Any “special” weapon, should the need arise, could be designed on the Thinkatron, and manufactured on the Vac-U-Form, if needed (and, if we wanted to go fishing, we could pop the ThingMaker module in the Creepy Crawler to make fishing lures).  Any extra construction could be done on the Mattel Power Shop.  Any unfortunate prisoner would be subjected to a rigorous line of questioning, and any false answers would be indicated on the Lie Detector, at which point the prisoner would be dealt with accordingly.  To provide the last defense (and utmost security in the form of an invisible force-field), we painted “KEEP OUT” on the entrance with silver spray paint.


The interior had also been well-designed.  The ceiling was only four and a half feet high, with the thought that a crouching target is harder to hit.  The fact that we didn’t have as much wood as we thought really didn’t have anything to do with it.  The bathroom utilities were installed last. In the event of an “internal leak,” we nailed a PVC pipe from the ground up the northwest corner support (the fake tree), and strategically placed it in the corner.  The pipe was topped off with a funnel.  Should this “leak” happen to occur while we were under attack, the nails in the pipe would prevent the enemy from shooting into the pipe, thus insuring that we wouldn’t spend the rest of our lives singing in a falsetto voice (or donning that robe and chanting on the side of a mountain).


The retractable ladder could be hauled inside and the door could be locked from within, to prevent entrance while in battle.  A minor engineering flaw developed, however, when we discovered that it could also be locked from the outside while we were inside.  Because of budget cuts that year, this problem was never resolved.


We determined that we needed a signal of some kind, to insure that we could be duly warned in the event of an impending attack.  After careful consideration, we chose the whistle of the Bobwhite, and each member practiced it until we perfected the sound.  Secret passwords were issued; various and sundry items were disposed of, and we were ready.


That day, the project we’d worked so hard and diligently on; our pride and joy; THE MIGHTY TREEHOUSE, was complete.



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Prelude to War


Word spread quickly among the kids, that there was now a fortification in town that would protect the innocent, uplift the downtrodden, right all wrongs, and expel the evils from their midst.  Recruits came from far and wide to join the ranks, but the membership was full.  Strange how these kids were nowhere to be found when we were building the structure, but suddenly appeared out of the woodwork when it was finished.  When I was little, I had read the book about the hen that baked the bread; no one had wanted to help her plant the wheat, harvest it, prepare it, and bake it, but when it came time to eat it, everyone showed up.  Funny thing about these kids.  They gave nothing to the project; they got nothing from it.  What’s more amazing…it made them mad. 



Now you might think that the elite fighting force concentrated only on the treehouse.  Wrong.  A group of super-heroes is always diversified.  Not only did we have meetings, hold elections, and right the wrongs of the world, but we spent a lot of time at the public swimming pool in Winona or swimming at Grenada Lake or Legion Lake.  After swimming all afternoon, we’d often go to the Mug ‘n Cone for a Frostie Root Beer and a foot-long hotdog.  Saturday afternoons would also find us at the Winona Theater, watching some horror movie of one of those corny Elvis double-features.  Fifty cents for admission; two dollars for candy, drinks, gum, popcorn, hot dogs, or whatever else we could find to stuff down our face.  I remember seeing Horror of Party Beach just before Halloween one year.  To Kill A Mockingbird probably scared me worse, because, even back then, it reminded me of the way things were at the time.  But, the Scarecrow of Romney Marsh, one of Disneyland’s (later the Wonderful World of Color/Wonderful World of Disney) Sunday night “mini-series,” was more like it.  The Scarecrow didn’t take any crap from anyone.  That’s what I liked.  We weren’t going to take any crap either.


I guess the latest movie that elicits those same childhood feelings would probably be Stand By Me.  Although we never participated in a “Barf-A-Rama” like “Lard-Ass” did in the movie, even now the idea seems intriguing. Just imagine if we’d known about that movie back then.  Newspaper headlines that often told of the casualties of the Vietnam War, or the Hippie Culture, or the effects of LSD, would suddenly exclaim: “Vaiden Boys Throw Up On The Mayor,” (or something to that effect).  It would bring our families closer together, for sure…especially on visitation day at the local jail.


Of course, there were the customary trips to Winona to stock up on the latest plastic models and comic books.  Monster models by Aurora and Lindberg and Revell were the most popular:  Wolfman, Frankenstein, Mummy, Dracula, Superman, Batman, the Creeping Crusher, the Krimson Terror, the Mad Mangler, and the Green Ghoul, the Creature from the Black Lagoon, and the Surfing models, with the big monster heads and small bodies packed into hot rods, or on surf boards.  Ugly stickers” were also popular, as well as the famous Ed “Big Daddy” Roth Rat Fink models.


We kept an abundant supply of comic books, as well: Batman --  Superman --  Justice League of America --  Flash --  Green Lantern --  Doom Patrol --  World’s Finest --  The Brave and the Bold --  Detective Comics --  Action Comics --  Adventure Comics --  Atom --  Showcase Presents the Metal Men --  Superboy --  Captain Atom --  Captain Action --  Fantastic Four --  Spider Man --  Mighty Thor --  Incredible Hulk --  X-Men --  Magnus the Robot Fighter --  Teen Titans --  Legion of Super Heroes --  The Avengers --  Aquaman --  Challengers of the Unknown --  Metamorpho the Element Man --  Captain America --  Blackhawk --  Sgt. Fury --  Blue Beetle --  Popeye --  Journey into Mystery --  Daredevil --  Iron Man --  Tales to Astonish --  Hot Stuff --  The Defenders --  Marvel Tales --  Jimmy Olsen --  Doctor Strange --  Silver Surfer --  Strange Tales (with Nick Fury) --  Sea Devils --  Tales of Suspense --  The Phantom --  Richie Rich --  Sad Sack --  Archie --  Beetle Bailey --  Spectre --  Prince Namor the Sub-Mariner --  Supergirl --  Green Arrow --  Wonder Woman --  J’onn J’onzz, The Martian Manhunter --  House of Mystery --  Hawkman --  Lois Lane --  Inferior Five --  Man from U.N.C.L.E. --  Dr. Fate and Hourman --  The Phantom Stranger --  Wendy --  Casper --  Sgt. Rock (Our Army at War) --  Little Lulu --  Little Lotta --  Little Dot --  Little Audrey --  Baby Huey --  Doctor Solar: Man of the Atom, just to name a few.  What can I say? We were diverse.  We collected comic books, and traded them accordingly.  By the late 60s, I had well over a thousand.  Those comic books, although indirectly, issued in the beginning of a new dawn; and, to repeat a phrase, “A day that will live in Infamy.”


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A Call to Arms


Vaiden, Mississippi, in the 1960s, was a bustling town.  There was always something to do.  My cousin Bruce and I spent many hot days riding my go-kart or pulling my wagon up and down the main streets, looking for soft-drink bottles.  Since cans weren’t common back then, and Super-Heroes’ salaries weren’t that great, we often picked up drink bottles to sell back to the local grocery stores.  We were addicts.  Not to drugs, but to ice cream and candy, cookies and soft drinks, toys and gum.  It was not uncommon for us to make two or three dollars a day in this booming business.  After cashing in on our bottle sales, we’d usually turn right around and spend it at Cearley’s Grocery, Crook’s Grocery, Summer’s Grocery, Yates’ Grocery, Smith’s Grocery, or Farrish’s Grocery.  We were good for the economy -- much better than a politician.  Not only did we clean up the town, but we reinvested in the community by spending our money in Vaiden. And, in hopes that the I.R.S. will read this one day --  we NEVER payed income tax on our earnings.  The town was clean, the grocery stores were booming, and we were stuffed with every sort of junk food known to man.  These were the days when a Butterfinger or Baby Ruth were made by the Curtiss Candy Company, not Nestle.  Double Cola and RC Cola and Frostie Root Beer, Orange Crush, Nehi, Sun-Rise, Nu-Grape, Grapette, Grapico, and Chocolate Soldier, Suncrest, 7-Up, Dr. Pepper, Orangette and Lemonette, Ski, Diet-Rite, and Sun-Drop, Upper 10, Up and Up, Bubble Up, Mission, Barq’s, Welch’s, Fanta, Teem, ‘Lil Brown Jug, Kickapoo Joy Juice, and Mountain Dew (Yahoo !  It’s Mountain Dew !  It’ll Tickle Yore Innards !) ruled the markets locally.  The Pepsi Generation hadn’t grown up yet, and Coca-Cola wasn’t the “Real Thing.”  There was a candy bar named “Seven-Up,” (no affiliation with the drink) that had seven different sections – with seven different candies  -- nut, cream, chocolate, vanilla, jelly, nougat, and caramel, I believe).  Each bite would produce a different taste sensation.  Old Spice was the favorite cologne back then.  In a barber shop, Wildroot hair cream and Jeris Hair Tonic were the favorite fragrances.


The Palmertree Barber Shop was located on Vaiden’s Front Street.  Coleman Palmertree always had a full shop, and it was often that his sons, Chris and Owens and I would “hang out” there to swap comic books.  On one particular day, I was there on business.  I had to have a haircut and my mom had given me strict instructions to tell him to “leave it long on top.”  Since the Beatles were popular back then, I’d always tell him to give me a “Beatle cut.” Now, my hair was never over my ears back then, and it would amaze him to think that I actually thought he could cut hair longer than it actually was.  I was sitting in the chair that day, when Joe Lynn, one of the kids from town, happened to come in.  The subject of conversation that day had, of course, been the treehouse.  Somehow, Joe Lynn had been left out of the “construction phase” of the treehouse, and was talking bad about it.  One thing led to another, and a challenge was made.  Rumors were passed around that it would soon be known just how “invincible” the mighty treehouse was.  I remember telling him that, when his group was defeated, I would send them a black rose, as a symbol of defeat.  He didn’t leave the Barber Shop happy after that remark.


Sometimes you get a “gut feeling” that something is about to happen, but just can’t place a finger on it.  That was one of those days.  The call to arms had been issued, and I’d accepted.  I really didn’t think that anyone would want to take on the mighty treehouse, but I could have been wrong.  It was that kind of feeling you get when your mom makes YOU cut the switch that she’s about to use on you.  I’d have to call the boys.


After the members were mustered into service, I hopped on my trusty bike and sped to town to Summer’s Grocery for several ten-cent packs of BBs.  I made it back home in record time.  Still nothing.  We left the treehouse and headed toward town on foot.  When we reached the Baptist Sunday School Building, we noticed Danny, the brother to one of the boys in the enemy’s group, spying on us from behind the Sunday School Building steps.  We surrounded him and held him down, while making all sorts of threats, until he confessed that he was on the way to spy on us, and that an attack by the opposition was imminent.  We had to take his word, since we’d left the Lie Detector back at the treehouse.  After releasing our prisoner, Philip, Bruce, Wayne, Larry and I headed back to the treehouse to prepare for the onslaught.  We waited.  Still nothing.  The wait reminds me of a song by the Monkees:


The King of Zor, he called for war,

And the King of Zam, he answered.

They fashioned their weapons, one upon one, ton upon ton,

And they called for war at the rise of the sun.


Out went the call, to one and to all,

That echoed and rolled like the thunder.

Trumpets and drums, roar upon roar, more upon more,

Rolling the call of “come now to war.”


Throughout the night, they fashioned their might,

With Right on the side of the Mighty.

They puzzled their minds, plan upon plan, man upon man,

And at the dying of dawn, the great war began !


They met on the battlefield, banner in hand,

And they looked out across the vacant land,

And they counted the missing, one upon one, none upon none,

The war was over before it begun.


Two little kings, playing a game, 

They gave a war, and nobody came.



And nobody came.  Yeah.  At least that’s what we thought…………………………


To hear Zor & Zam in .mp3 format, CLICK HERE  (2,000kb)




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I Have Not Yet Begun To Fight



There was no doubt about it.  Boy, my mom could cook.  This day was no different.  She was in the kitchen baking “tea cakes” for the Super-Heroes.  She made them from scratch, rolling the flour with her handy rolling pin.  We used to love to eat those tea cakes.  I knew, also, to stay out of the way of that rolling pin.  She probably wasn’t going to make very many tea cakes that day; only several dozen.  That should last us about an hour.


There was still no sign of attack.  As the mind of a twelve-year-old is apt to do, we decided to move on to bigger and better things.  The wagon that Bruce and I used to make our fortune selling bottles had finally died.  It had served me well, hauling everything from construction materials to dogs, to people, to those drink bottles, and it died a slow death.  But it served me to the end and, befitting the mourning of an old friend, we decided to give it a proper burial.  After we laid the wagon in its final resting place, and had finished covering it with dirt, we began the eulogy.  The woods were quiet, and we were in a somber mood, with no sound piercing the trees except the lonely whistle of a bobwhite. 


Strange.  That was our signal, but we were all there.  The sound became louder and quicker in tempo, when I looked at Bruce and said, “What do you think that…………”  All of a sudden, I heard the cry of “ATTACK !”  I looked up and saw Chris hiding behind a barrel, making some sort of a motion with his arms.  “Get in the Treehouse,” I cried, and everyone scrambled for safety.  Just before I went through the door, I picked up part of a brick, and lobbed it Chris, thinking he was now against us.  The brick hit Chris in the mouth, and broke one of his teeth.  I looked down the path and saw what appeared to be a dozen kids running toward the treehouse with dirt clods flying.


Jumping into the Treehouse, I locked the door behind me and realized that we were trapped.  Although we had ammo inside, we had no way to launch it.  As I was about to pick up my BB Gun, I heard David at the brick wall.  He poked the wall several times with a stick, and the wall collapsed on him, sending him reeling.  We began to fire with everything we had.  Dirt clods were flying in through the open wall, and we were able to dodge most of them.  Philip and Bruce began scooping up the clods of dirt and throwing them back, while Larry and I fired the guns.  In between the dirt clods, Philip managed to lob a stink bomb in the middle of a group of kids, which immediately broke into hundreds of pieces, and the awful stench filled the air.  I managed to fire a round from the Mighty Mo, but missed the target.  Let’s see.  About a dozen or more kids outside against four inside.  Sounded like a pretty even match to me. 


Robert yelled that he would try to take the door, and ran around to the front of the treehouse.  Wayne’s timing was perfect, as he pulled the cable, sending Robert sprawling into the broken glass and nails.  Ed and some of the others were throwing anything they could from behind trees, but couldn’t penetrate the walls of the structure.  I heard yelling, as some of the enemy, including Joe Lynn and Marvin, was finding out about the nails, glass, and barbed wire that was in the thicket below.  We had been right.  Twelve-year-olds didn’t wear shoes in Mississippi in the Summer.  I felt a sharp sting, as a dirt clod hit me above my right ear.  With a forced unequalled by the Green Berets, we fought with all our might.  I looked out to see that Chris was helping us from behind the barrel.  Remember, the Super-Heroes were invincible.


I could tell that we were winning, when I heard a yell of “RETREAT !”  I remember looking at the others as if to say, “we won,” when I heard “What do you think you’re doing ?  Get out of here or I’ll call the police !   The boys started for the woods.  Marvin stepped on one of the sharpened sticks, and it pierced his foot.  Still, they were running with all their might.  And they were running away !  Just as we opened the door to attempt a pursuit, we saw my mother standing there with flour on her dress, and that deadly rolling pin in her hand.  We had won, albeit not entirely by our own hands.


Six, not five, brave and proud soldiers emerged from the woods that day – Chris, Bruce, Philip, Wayne, Larry, and me.  The war was over and we were victorious.  Or was it us?  Now that I look back at it all, regardless of all the planning, all the ammo, all the training, all the firepower, the deadliest weapon of all was my mother’s rolling pin.


The Infamous Tea-Cake Recipe


[Ed. Note: This recipe is one that came from my Aunt Louise Caddess’ recipe collection, and is possibly the same that was used by my mother when making the tea-cakes during the treehouse war.  If I find the one in my mom’s recipe collection (and if it is different), I will post it, as well.]



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The Memory Remains


We didn’t receive a Congressional Medal of Honor, or a Purple Heart; no citations for meritorious valor and conduct on the battlefield.  Instead, we received a batch of tea-cakes that would make your mouth water.  So, to the victor go the spoils.  And………we all lived to fight again.


My mother told me there’d be days like this.  I just didn’t think it was today.  The Mighty Treehouse remained to shelter us from future attacks, and was a good friend to five Vaiden, Mississippi boys in the 60s.  It’s gone now, like a lot of other things that many of us have all but forgotten about.  My sons, Sean and Cody, will probably experience their own version of The War of the Mighty Treehouse someday.  Their dad will probably be right there with them……………if I can find my rolling pin1.


1  Update:  I now have the very same rolling pin in my possession.  In the words of Dirty Harry, “Go Ahead, Make My Day !”



Two Little Kings,
Playing a Game,

They Gave a War,

And Somebody Came !






On Sunday, November 26, 2000, my two sons, Sean and Cody, and I visited the site of the Mighty Treehouse.  We stood in the spot where the fortress stood in all its Glory.  In December 1990, a tornado swept through Vaiden and knocked over many trees, including what was left of the treehouse.  We stood on the tin that was once the roof, and the boys got to touch the remainder of the trees that once held the castle proud against the landscape.  The tin roof still clearly bears the spray-painted names of the members of the elite fighting force, but all else is gone.  While sadness filled my heart at seeing a mighty example of childhood in ruins, my boys reminded me of a motto that we live by:  “Never Give Up, Never Surrender.”  In the Summer of 2001, I plan to spend some time at that site, to reconstruct in my mind everything about it; to plan; to plot; and to resurrect it from the overgrowth and ruin that it has seen for many years.  We too often allow ourselves to become complacent and procrastinate about things that once were, and say to ourselves that things will never be the same again.  This is one case where we’re wrong.  The Mighty Treehouse shall live again, as long as there’s a breath in my body, and a Diet Coke in my hand.  So, if any of the enemies of the Mighty Treehouse are reading this:  The King of Zor, he’s calling for War !!




When the original story of the War of the Mighty Treehouse was written, I mentioned my lifelong best friend Tom (Evans) as being in our war.  This was not correct.  Tom helped build the Mighty Treehouse.  He put in hours of hard labor, as did all of us in ensuring that the impenetrable fortress remained impenetrable.  Tom was, however, NOT there the day of the war.  Larry Tate was. I want to apologize profusely to Larry for leaving him out.  It was, by no means, intentional. Larry certainly did – as did everyone else – his part in the victory.  Someone told me not long ago that I was old and sh*tty. I asked them, “Who are you calling old?" However, as far as the War of the Mighty Treehouse goes, I'll ALWAYS be 12. So Larry, you also deserve the medal of squalor valor like the rest of us. We are the champions !!!




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