October 5th, 2007


Head for the hills

I'm leaving in a couple of hours for Wilderstead, where we will have my birthday dinner. Looks like a small gathering. Curt and siege and that_guy_zach and the two of us (plus Sassy). There's a chance that Fräulein Führerin will join us; then, there's her parents plus maybe who knows.

The weather looks a bit iffy, so I'm taking the stock pot to cook in, rather than the Dutch oven. We'll do the Saarländer Eintopf over propane instead of an open fire. It'll do just as well. Because we're expecting a small crowd, we've abbreviated the menu a bit: Nuts and cheese for appetizers; no salad; Eintopf with rye bread for the entree; collinsmom's homemade low-carb cheesecake for dessert.

The next big gathering out at Wilderstead will probably be between Christmas and New Year's, when we celebrate our anniversary. This New Year's Eve will be our 34th. Boy, were we young. And now, we're old. Well, middle-aged.

Where did it all go? My body sure tells me I'm 54, but the boy I was still looks out through my eyes.

More on the Degreed Dullards

School is the Established Religion of America. Not education, mind you -- though education has always been held in very high regard in our country: Schooling ≠ Education. No, I mean the Public Schools are the Established Arbiter of Values and Morals, the Keeper of the Public Calendar; and teachers and administrators are the new priesthood that runs the whole thing.

Time was when the Church -- especially, Protestant churches -- held that position. Schools were expected to reinforce the values and morals taught by organized religion. No school would dare schedule any activity on a Sunday (or even a Wednesday evening -- that was "church night.") And pastors, even though probably unqualified, were deferred to on questions regarding public policy, especially where it concerned questions of children and family.

That time is now long gone, though many of us remember it. Not all those memories are good ones, but that's okay. There are good church memories and bad church memories, just as there are good school memories and bad school memories. The thing I keep coming back to is, should School have so much influence over our lives? not just our kids' lives -- the whole life of the community?

I don't want to start a rant on the incompetence and arrogance of what Schools are up to. I'd never reach the end of it. But I don't want to eliminate School: I just want it to occupy the role it used to occupy, as a limited but important part of our children's lives and the life of our community.