Tuesday, October 11, 2016

The Prodigal Blogger Returns

     Four days. Four blessed days of complete digital abstinence. Four days of not agonizing over the news, the implications of the news, or the personalities in the news. I feel refreshed. Reborn, I tell you! Why, I’m thinking of giving this BLEEP!ing thing up for good.

     Relax, relax. As our British cousins would say, I’m having you on. I could no more stop writing than I could stop breathing. Though it occurs to me that the latter is in my future, somewhere.

     Turns out it was a well-chosen four days not to bother with the news, too.

     Let me tell you something about the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia.

     First, they’re incredibly beautiful. When you wrench your eyes away from your keyboard, your e-reader, your smart phone, or what have you, you notice all this stuff. Mountains, rivers, streams, meadows, rapids, deer everywhere, the occasional tourist...I could hardly stop gawking at the wonders around me.

     A few of the wonders were the works of men. Note that I didn’t say “artificial.” I certainly wouldn’t say “unnatural,” as everything in Nature is a part of Nature, and therefore natural. Men’s works among those mountains deserve consideration, too, even if they went there mainly to enjoy what God had already fashioned.

     Our hosts for this little weekend away from the Sturm und Drang of our regular existence built their compound – four buildings: a main house, a guest cottage, a workshop for him and a sewing studio for her – from the ground up. It’s a rustic palace, a place that would stand proudly among any other, “professionally” built homes of comparable size. Moreover, it’s as close to self-sufficient as a home that uses electricity and heats with a fossil fuel can be in our time. It’s also very well fortified against intrusions of any sort. (I really would like to know where they got all that U-235.) To avoid compromising our hosts’ privacy, I’ll stop there.

     Then there was Monticello, the home of the greatest American ever to tread this continent: Thomas Jefferson. It’s an amazing building even apart from the mind and influence of the man who had it built. It incorporates elements of leading-edge architecture from all over Europe. It exhibits both ingenuity and taste. It also accommodates a family-centered existence of a sort that’s become uncommon in our supposedly advanced time. It was a privilege to tour it.

     And yesterday, I visited a wonder of another sort: Gander Mountain of Charlottesville. The term “superstore” should not be slung around carelessly, but for sporting goods, especially firearms, this store certainly deserves the designation. I’d be surprised to learn of a firearm sold today in the United States that isn’t stocked there. Used guns, too. My host ordered a “tactical shotgun” for himself – he’s a police officer – and I selected a more modest 20-gauge for my own purposes. (Unfortunately, I couldn’t buy it there due to certain Virginia laws about the sale of firearms to an out-of-state purchaser.)

     Truly, a trip to refresh the spirit...though I must admit, it was a bit of a nuisance always to be dealing with fallen trees, wandering herds of cows and deer, marauding black bears, and terrorists. (You’d think they’d leave a man and his wife alone at dinner time, at least.)

     Now, about matters political, which I had resolutely ignored up to now:


     If you’d be happy to see the United States shed the last vestiges of its former self and descend to the status of present-day Venezuela (or perhaps the Philippines under Ferdinand Marcos), go ahead and vote for Hillary Clinton. If you’d prefer to buy a few more years’ right to speak your mind, buy and do things the eco-fascists and Safety Nazis disapprove, pee standing up, and grab the occasional pussy indulge in a few of the cruder pleasures while flipping the bird at the enforcers of Political Correctness, vote for Donald Trump. The foofaurauw over the latter’s comments from 2005 is merely a tactical stroke by the Democrats, who are near to panic over the popular distaste for the former.

     It’s been said several times that Hillary’s principal disadvantage is that the more you know her, the less you like her. Atop that, the revelations about her behavior toward those who work for and around her, what she’s willing to do for power, and the willingness of her backers to excuse her for all of that and for other behavior that would land you or me in prison, have persuaded many that there really are two classes in America: the privileged and the peons.

     It speaks volumes that the Republican Establishment is so plainly willing to throw the election to Clinton rather than accept “outsider” Trump. Clearly, those mandarins know which class they belong to. They’ll do whatever it takes to keep their paws on even the lesser levers of power.

     That’s all for the moment. My nerves haven’t yet been unstrung and refrayed sufficiently to produce one of my more typical tirades. I might have a bit more for you after morning Mass. Until then, be well.


Bill St. Clair said...

Welcome back. I was worried that you had stopped breathing, until Col. Bunny's posts yesterday.

Malatrope said...

Only the occasional tourist?? Every time I've driven through there it's wall-to-wall traffic, sometimes actually backed up. Did you drive over Clingman's Dome (highest point east of the Mighty Miss) and walk up the spiral tower at the top? Highly recommended view, like the one at the end of Last of the Mohicans movie.

Yes, the country outside of metropolitan zoos is beautiful. Did you have any success convincing your wife that it might be preferable to where you current reside? If you like the climate, there's plenty of relatively cheap property down there.

Mark said...

I'm pleased to hear you had a relaxing break -- The Blue Ridge and Shenandoah Valley is a truly beautiful locale. It's a shame it's in Virginia, which is becoming increasingly blue. It angers me that I have to consider fleeing the state because of this trend. But that's another story.

However, your description of the beauty you saw reminded me of the following quote:

"All things are artificial, for nature is the art of God."
Sir Thomas Browne

Unknown said...

Oh sure, while you were off galavantin' I had a Moanday full of surgery, for couple of hernias; been with me over seventy years, but just lately they went crazy. But I'm back now, and read all your stuff including
today's conservative devolution, and there's gobs to say about that.
Thank God for the scriptures which reveal measuring sticks and the solutions for attacks just exactly like the PC onslaught that is trying to kill us now.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you had an enjoyable rest. When one steps outside and separates themselves from man made things to enjoy nature (even while doing yard work) one is apt to see amazing and beautiful creations (yes, even those pesky weeds the just will not die.. amazing). The sunlight making the colorful trees glow took up an inordinate amount of my time this weekend - too beautiful to ignore.

As for those republican sycophants I think they'd do well to acquaint themselves with the term 'useful idiots'. A little history about the 'friends' of Stalin would be in order as well. If those lessons were taken to heart they just might change their tune.