I remember a great many things from my childhood, but when I try to think back to third grade, I can recall three (and only three) distinct memories from that year. My favorite, which I remember with crystal clarity, is about flying cars.
One of the textbooks we used included an image of a flying car on one of its right-hand pages.
In the picture, two couples sat in a four-seat flying car. The car, a slick cherry-red number with white leather seats and impressive tail fins, sped through the troposphere. I often imagined it would fly right off the page.
This particular car carried four people — a man and a woman in the front seat, and a man and a woman in the back seat — all decked out in 1950s high fashion (in the 1970s, for my Midwest upbringing anyway, the future looked a lot like the 1950s).
These people oozed success and happiness. The driver had his head back over his shoulder, a gentle laugh bubbling from his lips, as he talked to the couple behind him, perhaps giving them a tour of the promise this brave, new future held.
I’m guessing they were supposed to be in their late 20s to early 30s. Both women were probably homemakers. Both men were probably aerospace engineers or mainframe technicians. There were other flying cars in the near background and a fantastical future structure in the far background. It was a wondrous z-axis superhighway.
Over the years, I’ve tried to find that picture again, without success. I can’t remember what the book was called, or even the subject matter.
Please check them out. They’re quite fantastic.