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Ron (sketchman) Axelson

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The laughing woman in the glass box.
By Ron (sketchman) Axelson
Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Rated "G" by the Author.

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A true story. Everyone have a great 2007.

I remember the old merry-go-round at Fair Park so well.
This Fair Park is in Little Rock, Arkansas.
The small fair grounds in our community then was called Fair Park. I believe itís still called Fair Park, but all the rides are gone.
When I was very young, I had it in my head that the little fair grounds would be there forever.

Fair Park had it all for a young one like me. Cotton candy,
bumper cars, merry-go-round, and the laughing woman in the glass box, etc. We only lived seven city blocks from the fair ground fun.

My Dad and Mom would take us to Fair Park every weekend and on some weekdays. I really loved Fair Park except for the laughing woman in the glass box.

When I was a baby being strolled by the woman in the glass box, I would scream and cry when I would see her.
When I learned to walk Dad would make me walk by that horrible looking, and sounding woman. Her laugh was like an echoing microphone with a deep muffled tone. I couldnít stand her sound or movements.
Her whole body would bob back and forth, as she was laughing. Especially her head where her horrid laugh was coming from, I thought. Her arms would move up and down, but I never seem to remember her legs ever moving.

After I was past the laughing woman in the glass box I would change just like that. I would stop crying immediately. First thing I wanted to do was get on the merry-go-round.
I loved that Merry-go-round. I had a special horse I would ride on if it wasnít occupied. I thought those horses where mighty pretty.
All my worries about the laughing woman in the glass box would just disappear when I was riding on the merry-go-round

My brother use to laugh at me while trying to imitate the glass box woman.
Teddy, my brother a year younger than me would call me a big fraidy cat.
I don't know why I was so scared of the glass box woman.
When I was about 30 years old I drove by to see my old friend in the glass box. I couldn't believe I was afraid of something like her. She was just a big doll. I think the glass box is what really bothered me. I've always been claustrophobic.

I don't know where the glass box woman is today. I heard on the news that someone bought all the merry-go-round horses and restored them.

We could have left the park on the other end away from the glass box lady, but it seems my Dad did enjoy hearing me yell and cry.
I'm sure Mom got tired of it.

Ron Axelson
© 1/3/07

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Reviewed by John Barthol 2/25/2008

That story brought back memories. The glass box woman at Fair Park Amusement Park was named "Old Luvable Sally". She scared me too. We lived very near the park on "A" street back in the day and would visit quite frequently.

My sister was terrified of her. She had a nightmare about her coming into her bedroom headless and clutching her laughing head. She is still around. She can be seen at Loca Luna Restaurant in Little Rock.

Reviewed by Sandra Corona 1/4/2008
Some of us were taught to fear everything, Ron. Be grateful that it was only the one thing!
Glimpses in a mirror, hindsight, like someone following you just beyond your line of vision ... always hiding but always there. Childhood can be extremely frightening and some, have pity, never outgrow them.
Thought inducing write. Love your art always.
Reviewed by Carol Rzadkiewicz 12/25/2007
I really like this tale. You have a crisp, concise style that says a lot in only a few words. I also think, underneath the surface humor, the story is saying something about parenting--both good and bad. I look forward to reading more of your work.
Reviewed by Birdie Jaworski 12/9/2007
Funny! I think that laughing woman will haunt my dreams tonight. Then again, nothing - and I mean nothing - is as terrifying as a clown!! Great story, Ron!
Reviewed by Poetess of The Soul Sheila G 8/9/2007
I love this Ron LOL
Your wrote it clearly fraidy cat, for good reason when small.
In Florida we saw ( while on vacation) an alien under glass!
not laughing my friend...but big, scary and green, and oval shaped eyes!
Enjoy! your day~
Warm hugs and Warmer love,Warrior Lady Purple Sheeeoox

STay Positive!
Reviewed by Cedric III 8/4/2007
its crazy the things we remember when we look back upon our childhoods. things that no one else remembers and things that people would laugh at if we said them outloud.

the laughing woman in the glass box.

i think i should like to tell you about another glass box i have heard of in hopes that this glass box will make you laugh rather than being petrified...

somewhere [and i cannot tell you where but you could prolly google it im sure] there is a toilet in the middle of a street that is made out of glass. you walk past it and you can look in and see the toilet. thing is... you can also USE the toilet. if you lock the door from the inside the glass becomes mirrored so you can see out and watch everyone walking by but that cannot see in so you are [almost] in private.
problem is... not everyone remembers to lock the toilet door before comencing their ablutions... WAHAHAHAHHAHAA!
poor ppl.

i wonder what your response would be today if you saw this laughing woman in the glass box...
Reviewed by Errr oooo 6/19/2007
Reviewed by Jeanette Foresta 2/25/2007
When we are little certain things spook us. Thanks for sharing this memory. We used to go to the beach house every summer when I was little, and we were near the amusement park. I stayed mostly on the beach, but at the park I never went in the spook house or any of the high rides, like the Ferris Wheel or the Roller Coasters. I was a scardy cat.;)
Reviewed by Selena Dobbin-Gillis 2/15/2007
This was a very nice and humourous piece. I enjoyed it very much. It was almost as if I were there myself.
Reviewed by Sandie Angel 2/8/2007
Some people's bad habit you can never shake them off. They disgust you and they don't even know that they are disgusting. Some talk very loudly and drown everyone with their voices; and yet there are some who just don't know that they are disgusting...

There's a woman at our work, she works in different department than mine. Everytime she walks by me I feel sick to my stomach when she greets me. She always greets with that babyish voice when she does her greetings. She goes "Hi Sandie!...." and then I would be feeling so disgusted when hearing her voice, even if her greetings meant well.

I don't know if anyone has told her that it is improper to greet someone in that manner at work. Gosh! I wish someone would let her know that without embarassing her!!!!!

A good humourous piece that tells your feelings when you were a young child. Told it just the way it is. Wondderful job!!!!!

Sandie Angel :o)
Reviewed by Larry Lounsbury 2/3/2007
Now this is a real gem of a story. It funny how chidhood fears can eventually turn into old friends. Great story!
Reviewed by Jackie (Micke) Jinks 1/6/2007
I can understand how wee-ones would be frightened by this appearance; but I'd bet many laughs were shared by the older passers-by! Enjoyed this remembrance of yours, Ron! BTW, we have a BIG Fair Park not far from me, over in Dallas, 'tho I don't think "laughing woman" moved there.

(Oh! I HAVE seen the Laughing Clowns, 'tho)
Reviewed by Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado 1/4/2007
Wonderful nostalgia you have penned here, Sketchman; as always, it is a joy to read you and see your amazing artwork! BRAVO, very well done! Happy 2007 to you too!

(((HUGS))) and much love, your friend in Tx., Karen Lynn. :D
Reviewed by Regis Auffray 1/4/2007
Thanks for sharing the memories, Ron. It brings back a few for me as well. Nice art to complement the story too. Love and peace,

Reviewed by Kate Clifford 1/4/2007
Your father probably thought this was the best way for you to get past your fear. Unfortuntly most do not realize that this often increases the fear. I have never really liked the laughing dolls either. In the fairs I have gone to Ontario it is usually a doll set up for fortune telling........always laughing......yuck. For me I think it is because I can detect that it is fake. I dislike anything fake. Thanks for the sharing.
Reviewed by Tinka Boukes 1/4/2007
Funny how people can make fun of another fear....remember I have a fear for spiders....guess who teased me once???

Anyways...I can relate to your "claustrophobic" side too...I hate being in a car with windows rolled up...I get very upset if I cannot hear the trafic...or feel the wind in my face....Aircons or no aircon!!

But Oh I used to love funfairs...but as of late I avoid much violence going around!!

Love Tinka
Reviewed by Kay P Devenish 1/4/2007
It isn't funny how some folks gt a kick out seeing little kids get frightened,poor Ron it must have been awful for you.My aunty did similar,she prentended to be the boogie man outside my door and she would laugh herself silly when I screamed and cried.Grown ups are so insensitive sometimes.Anyway Ron,I am pleased you survived it all to write about it...a good story.Also thatnks for your comment on my rant on those big adverts on A.D.
Best wishes and love to you and yours
Your friend
Reviewed by Joyce Bowling 1/4/2007
I would have been afraid too!!! A laughing woman in a glass box, I mean that's weird for an adult, much less a kid, and as a kid remember everything always looked bigger than it actually was. Great memoir...enjoyed.
Joyce Bowling
Reviewed by Victor Buhagiar 1/3/2007
Your dad must have been a tease. It is not good for children to be teased so. This is an excellent memoir. Who doesn't like funfairs. When I visited London I always went to Battersea and there was a big one there. Alas it is now gone. Who knows? Perhaps that's why I never visited London again. Victor
Reviewed by George Carroll 1/3/2007
Many , many years ago they used to have a program on the radio called the Witches Tale and it opened and closed with a blood curdling scream like you discribed. We used to pretend we were sleeping and at midnight we would turn the radio on and listen to that real scary program. Great story and sketch, Ron.
Reviewed by Lynn Barry 1/3/2007
WOW! What a memory, or should I say nightmare. Glad you don't have to worry about that stinkin' glass boxed laugher anymore. HAPPY NEW YEAR CUZZ, HUGS

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