Escape “Tired of the every day grind?  Looking for a life of romantic adventure?  Want to get away from it all?  We offer you … Escape!”

The first assignment of my Sophmore english class was to read the story “Leiningen Versus the Ants”.  The teacher approached the material with cold indifference like it were fresh roadkill being shoveled off a street.  Sure, the story featured an unstoppable force of army ants, but that was inconsequential to the task at hand.  I grew to hate that story, and all the stories that followed because they teased me with passionate tales of high adventure, but under the icy indifference of clinical observation, it was just another example of the current lesson.

I failed every quarter of that class and as a result, I forced to retake my sophmore year once again.  The only way for me to graduate with my class was to attend night classes which turned out to be one of my favorite classes (but that’s another tale).

Years later on a long drive to New Hampshire, I ran out of new Old Time Radio shows from my compilation except one.  It was titled Escape and the episode in question was “Leiningen Versus the Ants”.  Boredom trumped irritation, and so, I played the tape and found myself enthralled in a story I had once so easily dismissed.  Had that teacher matched the entusiasm of those old radio greats, maybe I would have passed.  I don’t know, but  after it finished the show, I flipped the tape to play “Three Skeleton Key”.  With the conclusion of that episode, I was a goner.  Escape had hooked me and now, fifteen years later from when I first listened to those two shows, it hasn’t let go.

Funny story … a few years after I discovered Escape, my next door neighbor (my unofficial little brother) was assigned to read and then be quized on “Leiningen Versus the Ants”.  He was as bored as I was with class and the outlook didn’t look so good for him.  Well, I broke out the old tape, pressed play, and  he got the bug.   He went back to the story with new enthusiasm and managed to ace the test.

If you are listening to Escape for the first time, not only do I recommend those two episodes, but also listen to “The Most Dangerous Game”, “The Thirteenth Truck”, “Bloodbath”,  “She”, and my all time favorite, “Casting the Runes”.  You will not be disappointed.

Have any thoughts or particular feelings on Escape?  Share them with the rest of the old time radio community!

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