Eddie, being a Jack-Of-All-Trades, became attracted to Amateur Radio the instant he laid eyes on the tower in the backyard. He was mesmerized, in awe of its potential. His word—potential.
He was more than happy to help install new antennas, spend hours wiring, cabling, and erecting what might be described as something from outer space. That might be what influences his ideas. I have only the conversation to go on as proof. It started something like this—
“How long are you going to work on this?” I ask because this little venture is heading into month five. Five months this thing has been laying across my backyard like a shed dinosaur antler. I might have made some off-the-cuff remark about it being able to reach Mars, or even further, past some undiscovered solar system supporting life perhaps not unlike our own.
“Funny you should say that,” Eddie says, “I believe extraterrestrials visit. Watch the stars some night. You’ll see.”
“I’ve watched the stars. Never saw a spaceship.”
Eddie climbs a ladder to reach the mast, “Who said they had to have a spaceship? Maybe it’s not that complicated.”
“Okay.” What else is there to say to that?
“You see the three big frogs tucked in by the roof up there?”
“So. They look like those Cuban frogs. Probably hitched a ride on a landscape truck from Miami. They’re going to eat all my lizards.”
“Ever consider they aren’t really frogs? Ever consider they might be visitors from out there?” Eddie gazes up at a darkening sky.
“Can’t say that I have. How would that work exactly?”
“Well, I’ve been giving it a lot of thought. Did you notice they showed up around the same time we started working on the tower?”
“Not really, but humor me. Pretend I’m with ya.”
“What if—now stay with me, what if they weren’t really frogs? What if they came down here from somewhere in space and got stranded? And they’ve been trying to find a way of contacting their kind ever since?”
“And they’re doing that how?”
“Tower. They’re waiting for it to be finished so they can contact their kind, in whatever real form they live in because I don’t really think they’re frogs, that their true form would be so weird they couldn’t blend in and blending in is real important if you’re trying to recon information to take back to your leaders. But my theory is, they’ve gotten stranded. They’ll use the tower to contact their ship, whatever that is, might not look like a ship folks think a ship would look like, but whatever. I think the day this baby goes up, they’ll contact their unfrog buddies and off they’ll go. Poof. Gone.”
I humored Eddie. The tower was finished and it rose in the air like a ladder to the heavens. The frogs disappeared the next night.