Wednesday, August 30, 2017

One Day at a Time: Trying to move forward

For those of you who might not know, my wife and best friend, Donna, passed away on Aug. 13th of this year.  To say it was a tragedy doesn't even come close to capturing how this has effected me and the rest of her family. To those who knew her, Donna was a force to be reckoned with.  Until the very end she was as active as her health would allow and was making plans for the future after I retired this coming December.  We had some adventures planned and I'm sure they would have been amazing.

People, who I know mean well, keep asking me how I'm doing.  There are two answers to that question.  There's the one I always give, which is the one they want to hear.  Basically what you see in the title of the post. "I'm getting by one day at a time."  It makes them feel good I believe and that usually ends the conversation.  The other is one I keep to myself and is the real answer. I'm in a very dark place, one darker and deeper than the one that Donna rescued me from all those years ago.  If not for Kristina and Sarah, I'm not sure I'd really want to 'move on' as I see nothing out there.

Maybe, if I had faith or belief it would be different.  I could pin my hope on some future date when there is some grand reunion in the sky.  I call bullshit on all that and at this point don't care who knows it.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Monday, March 13, 2017

The Worst Hard Times by Timothy Egan - a review

the worst hard timesthe worst hard times by Timothy Eagan
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

We hear a lot about the Great Depression, but the event that truly caused so much hardship for the American people, was not the crash of Wall Street and the banks, but the fact that millions of acres of farmland becoming unusual for years.

Author Timothy Egan utilized interviews with survivors, the diaries and journals of others, plus articles from the newspapers and magazines of the era. Also, going through the reports and papers published by the U.S. government and universities he tells a remarkable tale. Once teeming with millions of buffalo and the home of Native Americans, the U.S. government decided to turn the grasslands of the Great Plains into the farm belt of America.

Egan tells the stories of hundreds (perhaps thousands) of small farms that were urged to plow up the grasslands and turn into the wheat fields that would feed the U.S. Through subsidies and agricultural advice, that turned out to be wrong and even deceitful government and self-interested business people aided in the destruction of an eco-system that had been built over thousands of years. Within half a generation the plains became a desert where the land itself turned deadly.

An amazing story of both courage and enormous stupidity. Also a reminder that the short-term profits that can be made might not be good in the long run. Definitely something that we should be reminded of as things around us seem to be changing and not for the better.


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