July 07, 2011

Channeling Shelby

The droop.

I think I'm going to be out of control for the next few weeks. I just started listening to an unabridged recording of Shelby Foote's epic Civil War trilogy. If only it was read by the man himself, I'd be in paradise.

People who have known me for a while know that I have worshiped and have been known to attempt to channel Shelby ever since I saw Ken Burns' series on the Civil War. At any moment, I can go off on vast tangents of attempting to impersonate Shelby by relating the adventures of the fictitious Mississippi 7th during that historic conflict. Sometimes, this experience seems to be involuntary.

In my version, the men of the 7th commenced their involvement in the war with a heroic if ill advised cavalry charge on Fort Sumter, which lay more than a mile across the water of Charleston Harbor from Confederate batteries that fired on it. It was a moment of unparalleled gallantry, as Shelby might say. It goes downhill from there, but I'll try to stop now. While I can.

At times, I've even picked up various volumes by Shelby in public places and read aloud sentences chosen at random. He has the most amazing turn of a phrase, which can only be improved by hearing it in the voice of the author. One such gem that appears in the first volume refers to "the phallic droop of the Florida peninsula."

How come I can never come up with a phrase like that?

SUPPLY SIDE SNAKE OIL refuted here, for the millionth time.

SHARED SACRIFICE? Don't count on it.

MORE ON THAT here. Looks like a cave in is in progress.


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