What’s the First Thing You Ever Made, Reeve Van Nostrand?

It might not have been the first thing I ever made, but I do know I was very young.

An old gentleman friend of my parents came to the house one day. I do not think I was the target of the visit, but I guess, in an attempt to engage me, he showed me how to make stuff from rolled-up and folded newspaper.  No glue, no tape, no rubber bands, no paint. The attempt worked.  There was plenty of little boy left within him and I latched onto it. The old folks in the room would have to deal with the weightier matters.

The first item we made was a tri-corner hat. I was indeed amused.  I was downright fascinated.  He joyously demonstrated how it was to be worn and images of George Washington popped into my head.

I doubt that I ever duplicated his skill, but every-so-often afterward I would take the evening newspaper my father had just finished reading, sit down in the middle of the living room floor, and construct a hat, a sword, a boat or something unrecognizable to anyone but me.  A boat can take you to far off places and it never hurts to take a sword along with you. Having the right hat for the endeavor, well, that just makes sense.

I have no idea who this old family friend was. I do not remember anything about him or how he looked.  I can however still recollect his joy in teaching me, a very young boy, how to make something.

Each of my simple creations had a life expectancy of about fifteen minutes. The images and the joy have been everlasting.

-Reeve Monroe Van Nostrand, Jr., Financial Advisor

This was originally published in July, and is being republished as a single response.