Weekend Observations and Scrapbook

The World

  • Politics: Sometimes I feel as if our choices are between a road to ruin and a more inclusive road to ruin.

    Our nearest neighbor

    The road less traveled.

    The little house at the entrance to our farm

    Blimey! It’s mutton.

  • The view from 20,000 feet is one of overreach. The view on the ground is more of the same.
  • Beware of old men in a hurry.
  • When people speak of the coastal elites, we may assume that they are not referring to the Gulf Coast, where I was born.
  • According to NYT, 60 percent of the species most closely related to humans, primates, will be extinct by 2050. I hope I’m not called to account for my actions in hastening that prospect.

The Farm

  • The buttered bread theory: When falling forward into the muck of a pig paddock, your knee will find the hidden stone.
  • Home-fermented kimchi makes the perfect alternative salad to a rich Butcher’s Wife’s Pork Chops
  • Beware of what you wish for…. Rain yesterday, rain today, and blimey, if it don’t look like rain again tomorrow.
  • Mutton pie, composed mainly of ingredients raised right outside our door, can’t be beat.
  • Owning the right gun is a bit like owning a truck. When a friend has need (dispatching a dying goat), you get the call.


Reading this weekend: The Tribe: on homecoming and belonging, by Sebastian Junger.

5 thoughts on “Weekend Observations and Scrapbook

  1. Pingback: Fool Rushes In | The Spiral Staircase

  2. Brian,

    Just got back home from your neck of the woods, Maryville, TN. It was for my BIL’s funeral and I got to see a little bit of TN farming, but not as much as I would have liked. I’m afraid the once rural areas around Maryville/Alcoa have been ruined by much development. Can’t imagine trying to get farm machinery down the roads.

  3. I’m sure sorry to hear of your loss. Winter is always a tough time, it seems, for a funeral. That used to be a beautiful area around Maryville and Alcoa (Blount County). That county had some of the richest farm land in East Tennessee, lots of dairy. But, it was cursed with easy access to Knoxville. So today it mainly farms bedroom communities. When I moved here 33 years ago it was primarily open agricultural land.

    You are right about those roads. Then again, those roads only had to service small equipment. This is seldom the land of the big combine and tractor of the Midwest. A 500-acre farm would be considered quite large. I’m sure lots of 8-N’s hauling loads of hay traversed those little curvy roads just fine back in the day.

    Thanks for dropping the line,

Any thoughts or questions?