I was driving the other day and all I was passing was these suburban backyards. From Oberlin to the airport, it’s backyards that face the road. Who are these people??! Why are they not farms?
These white suburban “country” home backyards. They are all the same.. this one has a pool and a shed, this one has a shed, this one has a shed a pool and a trampoline, this one has a shed. America was a frontier when it was created, now it’s just tamed and mastered. There is nothing adventurous about these homes, nothing more exciting than buying something else, no features to geography, no country life/store/ and post office. You live in a box, move in a box, stop in a box, go in a box, work in a box, go home to your box, watch TV. I feel bad that Oberlin is such an exception to the drive-through setup of most of the U.S, but.. READ WENDELL BERRY, FOLKS! READ FARENHEIT 451! IT’S REAL! The car/stripmall/eazy convenience shop/gas station/work. It’s the home design. No use for these new homes.
Reading about the past, there’s a certain ambition or at least tolerance of physical tasks that rural folk had. I try to imitate this energy when I walk, hike, gather, farm, herb.. to be firmly outside the confining box of work and mono-vision. We have five senses, and the ability to better utilize all of them. Our minds, our brains have degraded. Let’s not become Farenheit 451.
Common sense and moral responsibility about nature and agriculture. A connection with the geography on which we live. Living as a society within our earth’s means. Stop looking at problems and implement solutions.
All these things come from having a small farm lifestyle and economy. While some still live this way (Wendell Berry, Joel Salatin, Few communities in Vermont, middle Massachusetts if they don’t drive in, or northern Ohio Amish communities), we’ve lost about 98% of the farms in the country. Anyone will also point out how we’ve lost a certain “common sense” also about how things work. No wonder we have such “pear-shaped people” another writer commented about.
Repair the car/motorcycle/bike/truck/whatever.
Split wood, build a shed.
Read a book: Farenheit 451, or Player Piano by Kurt Vonnegut.
What tames it? The car. Makes it all possible? the roads, the oil. America needs to change itself out of this demand. Out of this rut of being consumers. the Money. It generates too much waste and takes too much energy to be sustainable. Those nineties days are over people, let’s live out of the goodness of the Earth. -EM