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Let us begin, gentle reader, with a bit of housekeeping.
It seems that when we wrote the column captioned “Save America, Vote Republican,” some three weeks ago, we were caught up in the misstep characterized by Bobby Bums as “many a slip ‘twixt cup and lip.” We knew exactly what we meant to write when, in commenting upon our recently attained age of seventy-seven we intended to say, “as an old man who has in his 77 years witnessed more than a third of the life time of the republic, and as a patriotic American who knows that true patriotism lies in devotion to the republic, to its constitution, and to its ideals, not in mere flag-waving, slogan chanting loud-mouthed jingoistic display, we would advise everyone, but most especially our fellow citizens of the Republican persuasion that they exercise a bit of introspection and deliberation before judging the patriotism or good faith of any of their fellow countrymen.”
However, between the little grey cells of our brain, and the little red cells of our typing fingers it came out as “more than half.”
Now you would think that the reader would have gotten completely caught up in the passionate patriotic prose of the paragraph to the exclusion of all else, especially the mundane matter of mathematics. However, ’twas not so in the case of our old and valued friend Chris Cawood, who, a day or so later called and left a message on our answering machine detailing how there was no way we could be half as old as the republic at age 77. He described how he thought we might be calculating from a different date than the date of the adoption of the Constitution, or of the Declaration of Independence, and the only thing he could get even close to was the readmission of the South to the Union after the Late Unpleasantness of the War of Northern Aggression, but rejected that as just too complex to be what we meant, in which he was quite correct.
So, thanks to Chris for pointing out our error, and apologies to those readers who were too reticent to point out our error.
One of the consequences of our having attained so much more than our allotted “three score and ten” is the fact that while the mental faculties are, we think, still functioning normally, if somewhat slowly, our physical faculties, especially our immune system, are in a state of decline, whereby we can neither fight off, nor recover quickly from, those afflictions which at an earlier time we would have taken in our stride.
For instance we have been struggling for months with an outbreak of viral spinal meningitis, which in prior years we have recovered from in days, rather than the present months.
But, the latest affliction came about as the result of a fall which has rendered us scarcely able to get about, and certainly not without the aid of a couple of canes.
However, we are positive that in another week or so we should be restored to an ambulatory condition in which we can once again walk unaided.
Despite the foregoing physical affliction, we could not forego our annual autumnal venture about which we have told the reader previously.
This venture involves a visit to the Sequatchie Valley town of Dunlap on Highway 127, where we go to the Friends of the Library Book Sale.
There is always included in our itinerary a visit to Oren Wooden’s Apple store, especially to the coffee shop where the apple-based confections are made and sold.
This stop was especially popular this year, and we saw and chatted with three or four Roane Countians, and we suspect there were others there, but since we were navigating on our canes we might not have seen them.
After having a fried apple pie and coffee, and getting apple dumplings to bring home, we got some Honeycrisp fresh apples, as well as a bag of that old-time favourite, the Arkansas Black.
While on the top of the Mountain, we also went a mile or so out to Jackson’s Farms for a box of tomatoes. Never before have we ever seen so many tomatoes. There were hundreds of boxes full in the packing shed, as well as several wagon loads of picked tomatoes awaiting processing through the sorting and grading operation.
If we had returned from the trip without a single item to show for it, it would have still been well worth the time and expence, for both Walden’s Ridge, on both the Eastern and Western faces was ablaze with colour as the leaves seemed to be about half way through their annual colouring process. And the fields were bright green after a good rain.
As the poet opined — “A thing of beauty is a joy forever.”
As it was, we returned greatly cheered up, despite our decrepit condition, and well laden with food for the body: apples, dumplings, and tomatoes, as well as food for the soul: a couple of boxes of choice tomes to read at leisure for some time to come, in addition to a refreshed store of memories of the trip itself, which should last until next year.
Kind reader, you will recall that we have over the past several months commented disparagingly of the Republican efforts throughout the country to restrict the access to the ballot by the imposition of these new voter photo ID requirements, on the basis, which we have found to be specious, of preventing voter fraud.
Well, readers, when we accused the proponents, i. e. Republicans, of these ballot restrictions to
solve a non-existent problem, we erred.
They were absolutely right, there was, and is, an ongoing conspiracy to commit a gigantic fraud on the voting system, of previously unconceived of proportions.
We critics owe them an apology.
They were right.
We were wrong.
In view of the GOP’s previous track record, one might wonder how they came to be so right on this one.
Well, gentle reader, the reason they knew that there was going to be a gigantic assault upon the purity of the ballot, and a scheme to perpetrate a fraud of monumental proportions on this most basic of democratic institutions — the sanctity of the election process, was quite simple: They are the ones attempting to perpetrate the fraud!!!
You may have seen a item in the newspaper telling how a company that the Republican Party hired at some millions of dollars in compensation has been caught purportedly signing up voters, but then filtering through the documents and only submitting those they were sure would vote the Right Way, and destroying those that they concluded would most likely vote the Wrong Way.
After they were caught with their hand in the cookie jar, the national Republican Party leaders supposedly fired this company and denied knowing anything about what was going on, but some of us are having a hard time believing in their innocence, since they have devoted the better part of the last few years warning us of the dangers of this very thing happening.
Wasn’t it old Phineas T. Bamum who opined that there was a sucker born every minute?