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Top 25 things Vanishing from The United States

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  • #31
    Re: Top 25 things Vanishing from The United States

    agrumentative a$$hole

    Oh I'm sure I've won this crown a many time on this site and others. I bet there's times someone would wish my keyboard would disappear, or at least spill a drink on it to bide time for rebuttal.

    I responded to your pm, no need to apologize for your viewpoint.
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    • #32
      Re: Top 25 things Vanishing from The United States

      I went down the list and a few of the "vanishing" brought a smile or two. Sadly some of the things I hate to see go and one of them is the much discussed (here on this thread) family farm. My grandparents had a farm (97 acreas, as I recall) in Wellsboro, PA. My cousins and I used to spend a couple of weeks every summer there when we were young. I loved hearing about the "boys" (all my uncles) when they were young and of course the efforts to be independantly sustaining and yet contribute to the war effort while all "the boys" were away fighting.

      But the grandparents are gone now and only one aunt ended up with the farm. But as far as I know, it's just land farming done! All the boys went to "jobs" after the war; so goes growing up and independence I guess. But there was never any discussion from Grandpa about any of that. Still, I have fond memories.

      I grew up in farm country (east of Binghamton, NY) and all of us neighborhood boys worked the farm during the haying season and a few of us were lucky enough to get hired part-time cleaning the barn, helping with the milking and a few other chores. Good memories there too; but, that farm is now "just land" too. Farming is hard work and it's darn hard to make ends meet I think.

      As far as "Ham Radio"... well it has declined a bit since 2003, but in the last three years it's been slowly gaining ground. I'm part of an examination team, and we've seen the numbers grow in our area. Not the same caliber of people as when I was a kid, but today it represents more of the working class and "volunteerism" is highly prevalant. The internet is okay, and I know it's often the excuse that many use for the decline in Ham Radio, but that's just for the techie-types I guess. "Radio" is sort of a "bug", that's hard to explain. Like "Harley-folks", if you have to ask, you probably wouldn't understand anyway.

      "Checkbook's" are a pet-peeve of mine. We still have a checking account and probably always will. I'm not so trusting of the internet and financial transactions, so we still use the checkbook to pay most of our monthly bills that arrive via snail mail. But I'm about berserk when some character ties up the line paying for their grocery or store bill with a check.... "Hey, haven't you ever heard of a credit card?!!!"

      "Hand writing"... well all I can say is that I spent much of my writing career (technical writer) using a yellow pad and a pen; then having a typist make a manuscript, and then having to proof read what I had already written. I was elated when I got my first computer back in the late 70's.

      I also remember well when my son, had a teacher who demanded that everyone in her class MUST do their homework in "cursive"... NO TYPING! Well, he turned in his hand-written paper and also gave her a copy that was typed... and a little note that said, "Your Choice!" She recinded her order for "hand-written". Too bad though, as I think we should all be able to write legibly. But my "writing" is not so neat and any professional "writing" that I did was "printed".

      "Manual Shifts"... well, I suppose that's true. Automatics seem to be on every car these days. But I love the "stick". Learned on the "farm" with a little Ford tractor and big "deuce and a half truck". My first new car was a '65 beetle and of late, I have a '95 Miata. I love driving a "stick".

      Sort of "Shade Tree Mechanic" I suppose, are those Saturday afternoon traditions of washing and waxing the car in your own driveway, glossing up the tires, and checking out all the fluids, etc. Does everybody really go to the car wash these days? I suppose I could throw "charcoal" right in the mix too... just something in my soul I guess, that takes me back to the smell of car wax, oil, and then later, red meat sizzling on a charcoal fire. "GAS"... no thanks, I'll take "charcoal" please!

      Last but not least.... Sidewalks! Not mentioned in the article was "porches" (you don't see many of those anymore either). Like Ham Radio, shade tree mechanics and Community Banks, I suppose I could relate and perhaps even blame it all on television, computers and the internet. I love sidewalks and porches and the great neighbors and kind people that one would meet because of them. I love walking through my town and now city, meeting and making new friends. I miss those old days when people would invite you up on their porches for long talks, and perhaps something cool to drink. Nice to make new friends. The house in Binghamton doesn't have a front porch, but I love to spend some time each early evening, sitting on the front steps; I've met some nice people because of that big, wide sidewalk in front of my house.

      When I was kid, television was no where near as overbearing as it is now. Perhaps because it was still an oddity with our parents. We'd spend a lot of time on the front porch. "Up north" where I lived, wasn't nearly as friendly as "down south" where I'd go to visit the maternal side of the family. Down south, you always got "invited" when taking a stroll down the sidewalk. "Who do you belong to?" and "I know your Mama!" was often the "invitation"; and many, many times, a single porch occupant would soon become a half-dozen or more, and then someone would go grab a guitar and before you knew it, half the neighborhood would be there. Such are the adventures that sidewalks and porches offer. Too bad they're on the endangered species list.

      Last edited by CWSmith; 05-02-2009, 11:22 PM.


      • #33
        Re: Top 25 things Vanishing from The United States

        We live in a ranching and farming region. Both have it tough - and all work very long, hard hours. Some kids decide not to carry on because of the tax liability associated with taking over the property.

        On a more critical note, I highly recommend watching the documentary THE FUTURE OF FOOD. It is available on the internet. has it for free. It describes what will be the final nail in the coffin of small farmers: genetically engineered seed. The seeds are patented and if your crop has any of the patented crop, you owe big money for patent violation. Monsanto has already made it clear that it will sue anyone! Their big one now is corn, but moe is coming at a faster pace. this means that patent owners will control both food sources and pricing.

        Measure TWICE - Cut ONCE! 'Cause the Lumber Stretcher is broken!
        I'd throw more things away, but I'm afraid someone might want them...
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