Once in the middle of Nowhere: The Center of the Universe: A Collection of Turtle Mountain Tales

Once in the middle of Nowhere: The Center of the Universe: A Collection of Turtle Mountain Tales

by Robert Malaska

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Overview

Once in the middle of Nowhere: The Center of the Universe: A Collection of Turtle Mountain Tales by Robert Malaska

This collection of short stories consists of tales of the North Dakota Turtle Mountains, Jack's boyhood home. The reader is pulled into that rather magical and historical place - an oasis of deciduous forest in the vastness of the Great Plains that straddles the US border with Canada. Jack uses his vocabulary and his artist's eye like he would a brush; to paint rich descriptions of the landscape that both entice and envelop the reader. His retelling of personal stories of his youth captures the essence of the people and lifestyle of the rural, pre-World War II Midwest. Today, gravel and macadamized roads have replaced some of the old wagon trails. SUV's, pickup trucks, and snowmobiles cover ground once traversed by cutters and dray horses. But in many other ways, life is lived seasonally today in the Turtle Mountains as it always has been. These tales intrigue and compel the reader to 'step into' Jack's past. This delightful diversion is certain to enchant and amuse.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780977412419
Publisher: Robert Malaska
Publication date: 06/02/2009
Pages: 312
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.70(d)
Age Range: 16 Years

About the Author

Jack Olson was born October 24, 1922 in Bottineau, North Dakota where he grew up on the family farm. In 1943, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps where he earned his silver pilot wings, which he considered to be his proudest achievement.
During WWII he was a B-17 pilot and a pilot instructor in B-24 (Liberator) bombers where he was recognized for saving his crew and airplane after loosing 15 feet of wing from a midair collision. Later he was promoted as a pilot in command of a B-29.
In 1950 he joined Brown & Bigelow as the chief designer in metal and plastic products where he earned 120 mechanical and design patents. In 1951 he received the National Design in Plastics award for his design of the now famous Tupperware Party favor, "the pickle plucker".
In 1958 Jack joined the The Boeing Company and became Principal Engineer in Concept and Design. He soon became widely recognized for his visionary concept designs, and illustrations of spacecraft and space exploration. His projects involved a concept that paralleled the later design of the Hubble Space Telescope, the design of Boeing's bid to NASA on the Moon Lunar Excursion Module (LEM), a manned Mars outpost, and a solar power satellite project. He considered the concept of using the barren land beneath the solar power satellite receiving antenna as a greenhouse, which could provide food for a city of a million people, as one of his most exciting projects. Jack was also responsible for the concept and detail design of the Boeing Jetfoil.
Forced into early medical retirement in 1984, Jack continued to do consultant work for Boeing and NASA. In 1985 he was honored with a one-man show of his spacecraft design illustrations at the Smithsonian's Air and Space Museum in Washington DC. Twenty-one of his paintings are now part of the permanent Smithsonian collection.
Jack enjoyed flying sailplanes and earned the Diamond badge from the Soaring Society of America. He also enjoyed painting, photography, woodworking, music, and was a history buff.
His illustrations have been included in several textbooks and coffee-table books and have appeared in numerous periodicals and products globally. Among other achievements, he was a master Photographer in the Photographic Society of America, a member of Epigraphic Society and of the Soaring Society of America and occupied a chair on the National Space Society Board of Governors.
On August 28, 2001 Jack lost his 14-year battle with cancer.

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