As with most of the stuff like that from my childhood, it’s been lost and I wouldn’t even know where to begin to look for it. If I had known that someday I would want to hear it again, I probably would have taken better care of it. It likely got stepped on or broken or the book got torn. In a sentiment-free moment, I probably threw it away – although I really can’t imagine doing that!
I’ve kind of poked around the Internet looking for a copy of it off and on for several years. I never really made it a quest or a mission or anything like that – it was one of those “wouldn’t it be cool if I could find it?” Well, much like it never occurred to me to check YouTube for that rare original country version of Dolly’s “Two Doors Down,” I never thought to look for Blinky there either.
As it turns out, he’s been posted there since at least 2010.
The funny thing about Blinky is that he’s kind of a sad sack. Woe is me, I don’t have any friends! I’m never going to open my eyes again because the other ships won’t even say hello! Of course, he saves the day when there is a storm and the ships are all in danger of colliding into each other. I never noticed it then, but it’s kind of a nautical retelling of Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer mixed in with a healthy dose of Charlie Brown. Still, I couldn’t help but feel for Blinky because all he wanted was a friend, even if his reaction to having no friends was probably not likely to win him any.
Perhaps that’s why I liked it so much. Feeling vaguely lonely is one of those background emotions for me, even when I’m surrounded by people that care a great deal about me. That is just one of those things that I am learning to live with and realize that while I may feel it, it is just a feeling and not rational. It doesn’t overwhelm me often so it’s one of those things that I’m learning to coexist with. Blinky was a lonely light ship, and I was a lonely kid, even though was certainly not at a loss for friends. I think it goes back to me really wanting more meaningful connection with people when really, that’s just not easy to get.
I have to say that I loved the songs quite a bit. “The Old North Wind” song is one that I could still sing to all these years later.
I probably threw over Blinky the Lighthouse Ship for another Blinky, although I would not imagine that I was still listening to book-and-record things at age 10. Although I do remember getting the Gremlins ones at Hardees and I would have been 12 the summer Gremlins came out. But as I’m learning, 12 is one of those ages where you can be a kid one day and a grown-up the next and then back to being a kid the day after that.
One last thing about Blinky. Even though it screams evenings in the mid-70s, I was stunned to find out that it has a copyright date of 1954. I suppose it’s kind of old-fashioned so that probably shouldn’t surprise me. Had it been produced in the 70s, Blinky probably would have been a disco ball at Studio 54.