When I wrote about Revisiting Logan in My Mind I heard from old acquaintances, and it raises an ambi-valence of social media. We live in two (if not more) valences, a past in which we’re cognizant of how early friends have shaped us, and a second in which we selectively acquire new acquaintances based on mutual interests rather than the happenstance of geography. This is part of the Second Wind phenomenon, elaborated by the geriatrician Dr. Bill Thomas.
I referenced the Facebook group, Growing up in Logan/Olney Neighborhoods in the 50s/60s Philadelphia, and just the other day Linda Zwanetsky, who grew up across the street on the 4700 block of Warnock, mentioned tracking down her neighbor Michael Poster. Based on her information I located Michael’s website, and it appears he is as eclectic as ever – and I say that in a very fond and admiring way.
For the sake of convenience, I’ll reproduce what I wrote about Michael four years ago:
I spent countless hours in the driveway, occupying the backspace of the homes that bounded the block-long area of Loudon and Wyoming North/South and 10th and Warnock running East/West. Most kids in Logan had his or her territorial square block driveway, with an array of games suited to the narrow width of the concrete strip. The boys played wireball or halfball, more so than the girls who would usually play hopscotch, with bottlecaps and bike riding as unisex ventures. The big brother I never had was Butchie Sokoloff on Warnock Street, but my driveway contemporaries were principally the Levine Boys, Barry Finkelstein, Michael Poster, and Billy Walto. I haven’t kept track of any of them, so don’t ask me Where’s Walto?, though I do recall my first discussion on existentialism with Poster, he of Central High.
For a single long slab of subdivided concrete, bounded on both sides by row homes, an incredible number of diverse individuals and characters occupied that driveway. One of them was an older gentleman who would complain every time we played in front of his house. If a neighbor parked his car just a tad over the line of his subdivided concrete, he’d call the Police to complain. This earned him the name of “Crabby Appleton”, derived from the Tom Terrific cartoon on the Captain Kangaroo show. Michael Poster was, in my mind, Tom Terrific.
I honestly don’t know how I’d feel about re-connecting with Poster. I’m generally not real big on re-uniting with people. It’s wonderful to go back in our minds to places where we came from, and reconnect the past with our present. But reconnect and re-unite are two different things, which is why some of us feel awkward about re-unions. Yet something about the warmth with which Linda wrote about Michael and re-connecting with him does make me realize that Second Winds have room for such reunions. I, too, would like to see what became of such an intriguing young man in latter day adulthood. I’d let him now that the quiet kid who hung out in the driveway absorbed many of the words uttered by the dreamer from Central High.