I guess, in truth, “Reno by the/in the Lake” is my “Autobiography Light.” The material is indeed autobiographical in that little has been gleaned from any outside source and it is definitely light both in serious content and the serious nature often portrayed by an autobiography. So read on just for fun. Reno Beach was a magical place in the 1920s, ’30s, ’40s and ’50s, a resort town that never really quite reached its prime. It had, however attained great stature in the hearts and minds of all it entertained, especially in the imagination of a young boy who could see adventure, even in the smallest buttonhole or banal blemish. In his mind a vegetable garden became a wilderness plantation. An overturned rowboat became a fortress, a pirate’s treasure cave or a magician’s maudlin mansion. A willow tree only recently uprooted by the wind and waves of an angry possessive lake trying desperately to reclaim its own; this became the perfect home for “Tarzan (Jimmie) of the Apes.” The fact that I’m even writing this book belies the fact that the place and that little boy still live, if only in my imagination. The stories you’re about to read are about that small waterfront community just east of Toledo Ohio on the western end of Lake Erie and how it’s life; death and frequent revitalizations affected the life of one small boy, namely me. The stories are absolutely true except as altered by an aging memory, wishful thinking and delusions of grandeur, not necessarily in that order, and they represent some of the very best days of my life. I’ve been told that it’s good to share your very best. I hope you enjoy reading my stories nearly as much as I enjoyed living them. The writing’s been fun too. Some names and places may have been altered to protect the innocent and/or the guilty, but not many. Some may also be changed just because I’ve forgotten or don’t really know what I’m talking about. Please forgive me. Many may recognize themselves, a friend or family member in some of these stories and each one probably deserves whatever treatment or attention they received, either good or bad. This book is intended to be a “Bathroom Book.” This is not a negative. For those unable to grasp this creative terminology I provide the following explanation in the form of a prescription: Take in small doses. Continuous exposure could be hazardous to your health and could lead to an abrasive situation requiring an immediate application of Preparation “H.” This does not imply that either you the reader or the writer is full of . . . Anything. Should you disapprove of any of the material in this book please feel free to remove the offending pages and put them to better use right there in the “Reading Room” solving the problems of the moment. I’m sure you understand. Enjoy. Life is short. Don’t waste it on seriousness.
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