Thoreau was unimpressed.
I'm not sure if I'd enjoy hanging out with Henry David Thoreau, given the chance. He seems to have been a bit of a crank. But I love reading him. It is an under appreciated fact that many of the classics of American literature are not only good reading but are laugh out loud funny.
Lately, I've been re-reading Walden, a work I revisit every few years. It really is a rich and funny book and some of his barbs strike home.
Here's one that speaks to my condition on the farm these days:
I am wont to think that men are not so much the keepers of herds as herds are the keepers of men; the former are so much the freer.
That sounds like a man who knows a thing or two about goats.
The book is also full or random zingers, like this one on the wonders of ancient Egypt:
As for the Pyramids, there is nothing to wonder at in them so much as the fact that so many men could be found degraded enough to spend their lives constructing a tomb for some ambitious booby, whom it would have been wiser and manlier to have drowned in the Nile, and then given his body to the dogs.
(For the record, El Cabrero thinks pyramids are kind of cool.)
Don't be too surprised if old Henry shows up here again soon. There are plenty of nuggets where those came from.
WALL STREET "WISDOM." Here's economist Dean Baker's latest rant about Wall Street and the deficit hawks. I think it's a pretty good one.
THE POLITICS OF DISGUST are discussed here.
Q & A. Here's the latest edition of the Rev. Jim Lewis' Notes from Under the Fig Tree. Those who have been following his static with the Episcopal diocese of WV may want to check it out.
SENIOR BLUES. Three in 10 older West Virginians have trouble making ends meet.
MY HOLY LAND. Regular readers of this blog will find this familiar, but here's an article I wrote for the Gazette about my Okinawa trip. Some of it got cut but you'll have that.
GOAT ROPE ADVISORY LEVEL: ELEVATED