Monday, September 1, 2014

Late apology

I can't let this month slip by without at least one post.  I apologise to any who have been coming here lately, looking for a post of some kind.
There have been days when an idea came to me and I began a post only to abandon it.  Why and wherefor should I do this, I would ask myself, and got no answer. 
I live with disorientation.  America today is changed so much from the America I knew that I feel like a stranger in my own land.  How do you defend something that no longer exists?  How can you love a vanished world?

The picture on the left was taken in winter of 1943-1944 when I was ten years old.  On the back of the photo, my older brother wrote: "Here are the ten little porkies (some on other side) enjoying their meal.  I took this when they were  6 weeks old.  The pen in background is the one I built for her of the lumber from camp.  Notice the 'runt' in the back end after her meal."   This photo and note were for my father who was working on the Al-Can Highway in Yukon territory, Canada.
The photo on the right was taken in early summer of 1944.  My brother Alan and I were feeding the kids.  Notice the patches on the knees of my pants.
The 'camp' that my older brother referred to was built by the government on my grandmother's dairy farm during the Great Depression.  The building lacked insulation, electricity and plumbing.  It served as living quarters for a crew from the Civilian Conservation Corps  sent there to clear brush from Seely Creek and build wooden bridges at each farm to provide access to the Goose Pond mountain range which ran along the north side of the valley.

From 1948 to 1950 (sophmore & junior high school years) I ran a trapline during the winter to catch wild animal pelts to sell for extra money.  Every morning before school, I dressed for winter and walked the trapline regardless of weather.  Trapping is one part of my youth which I would not repeat but these examples show how markedly different life is today.


  1. Linc,

    America, and the world for that matter, has changed very dramatically in your lifetime. One might say, more than at any time, for any generation in history, although I despise the egocentrism that statement suggests. But, please remember that your experiences are important for those online today and those to come. We must understand the past, where we came from, how we've changed, if we wish the future to be better. Of course, defining better is where the debate begins, but it is a bit easier when we acknowledge how today was shaped by the events of the past. Does that make any sense? Here is one person wishing your continued contribution to the dialogue.



    1. Thanks, Joe. Defining 'better' might also mean acknowledging that some lessons of the past were ignored; possibly they were overtaken by momentum or technology.
      When I look at those pictures, I see that the pen was built without a trip to Home Depot. That pants were patched, not tossed into a landfill. That good-looking pigs were raised without a peep from anyone about organic, natural, range fed, or higher productivity or trying to feed the world.
      Somehow, someway, a system of behaviors and beliefs was abandoned to the behaviors and beliefs that people hold today.
      Once, at a public speech, a man in the audience yelled out to speaker Wendell Berry that "You can't go back in time!" "Of course not," Berry replied, "but you can go back in character."

  2. I am not sure if you read this way-back-when when I posted it, but I thought you might enjoy it. Reading this made me think of it right away and it is a defense of drawing the lines when it comes to change: