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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

There is not as much meaning to life as one would think...

I was looking at the NewAgTalk forums last night. Lots of discussion about the election. I have some pretty cynical views of said candidate and political process so will not go there at this time.
There was one post about celebrating Confederate Heroes Day instead of the Saint Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King which caused me to stop and think.
No one really understands the South. Not sure people who live there do. I certainly don't. But, it is an interesting place. I worked in Florida a couple spring seasons during college. Baled straw there and then came home and baled some more. There was certainly a class system there. If you owned land and were the boss you were given respect. In 1984 it was hard to tell who was a carpet bagger and who wasn't. Bet you could tell now. I found if I was respectful and kept my mouth shut I got along with everybody. Pretty strong racial divide between white and black kids as I remember. Just way different cultures. Backs seemed to be trying to be city kids. Whites just wanted to drink beer and go to the river on Sunday afternoons.
I remember reading, "The Ice Palace," by F. Scott Fitzgerald. Girl goes north to visit her intended and the Yankees get to her. She comes back home eats a peach and goes swimming. Went to the Midwest for Bible school for six long months, then got my job in Florida. Kind of felt like I understood the story better.
The problem with Yankees is that always know better than you. You have to be their kind of progressive, accept their kind of people, they just won't let you be. Seems to me that the Northern style liberal christian is of the opinion that man is basically good he just needs to be guided and shaped and pushed along till he gains some sort of enlightenment. Southern Christianity accepts man is basically evil and you have to deal with it. So you have your standards and your code of honor and you live by it. Or at least that is how the old southerners I knew were. I suppose the whole honor and souther charm is all a dream that was never really true at the time it was to have happened. Still everyone looks back on it with fondness. The whole south is deeply offended for not being able to form their own country. I think that had as much to do with racism as anything else. Blacks had more rights in the South before then civil war than they did in the North. I suspect things changed for the worse for everyone afterwards. Just a different kind of slavery.
I like Tom Petty's Southern Accents album. Reminds me of the people I knew in Florida years ago. I understand that now it is all pastel condo's and annoying young liberal people now. Travis Magee saw it all coming. Not much room for the "Busted Flush," in modern Florida I suspect.
I remember sitting under a grain trailer one afternoon with an older black fellow. I had mired the baler tractor in the wet ground. I was waiting for someone to pull me out. I got to talking to him. He wanted me to go in the landscaping business with him. He said all the kids my age he knew were worthless. Just wanted to chase the girls and listen to loud music. He said he had to work when he was a kid. Was happy to see me traveling so far from home (Oregon) to work on a farm. Said it would be a good experience for me. Kind of funny, not a real racial divide setting there on a hot June afternoon. I must say I certainly wanted to chase the girls as well. Just needed to find some. That is what Panama City is for I think...

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