Tag: stories

Destroying Not Only Our History but Our Stories

 

The Left has been relentless in its efforts to distort, remove and delegitimize the history of our country. The damage to our children and to our nation is incalculable. But I realized that losing our history for future generations is much more than removing the tales of battles, founding documents, and the contributions of our Founders.

We are losing our stories and the significant role they can play in our personal lives.

When we study our history, we learn so much more than facts and figures. When we look at the Founders, we learn not only about George Washington’s bravery, but also his modesty, even his insecurity, about his lack of formal education. We come to understand the enormous barriers that Abraham Lincoln encountered that he was prepared to overcome through his commitment to his own education and accomplishments, his bouts with depression, and living with a troubled wife. Ulysses S. Grant was not only a great general, but he suffered greatly in his witnessing of those who died on both sides of the war, the Union and the South.

“Faster Horses” and Leaving a Legacy

 

Tom T. Hall passed away yesterday. His passing has a me a bit melancholy, and mindful of something I wrote down about 10 years ago (the content of which comprises most of this post). The album in the picture here is one of the first records I ever owned. It was given to me by my great-uncle Lew on a trip I took as a young child to the northwest. My memories of that trip are very sketchy: I have only fleeting images within my recall. Yet somehow I remember that “Faster Horses” a time was my favorite song.

Over the years, I listened to this record over and over again, before it got put away somewhere. I still have it. In fact, I was listening to a Tom T. Hall compilation album on my drive home from work just the other day. He was a noted singer, songwriter and storyteller, and it is the stories he tells through his songs that seemed to matter the most to him. It ties me to an aspect of my own history that I find difficult to articulate.

Stories. On the back of the “Faster Horses” album, there is a letter of sorts from the singer about a sabbatical he took in the winter of 1975. It isn’t a letter so much as a collection of entries, observations, and here and there a nugget of wisdom. I couldn’t help but think of my favorite future fantasy of owning a simple house on a lake, with a dock, boat, and canoe. That really has nothing to do with the point I’m slowly working towards here, but it does serve as a backdrop for the gentle melancholy I feel at times in our present reality. The stories of previous generations seem different as each one passes through this age of “progress.” This present era seems ever more confining, in the sense that more and more we relate to one another only through electronic mediums. We live in a cocoon defined by our digital interactions and preferences. Living in such a bubble, what stories can we tell? What narratives and legacy can we pass on that can go beyond the confines of our technology? The age of progress has resulted in a tangible retreat into a false reality of being. The internet is not the real world, and too often it serves not as a bridge, but as a barrier between us and other very real people. What stories can we tell, that will enliven the imagination of our children? Technology may “connect” us to the world, but it also isolates us to the point that intimate, substantive relationships become hard to develop. It is the relationships that enrich us most, that provide us the fertile material for the story of our lives.

Quote of the Day: Our Stories are Vanishing

 

Man is in his actions and practice, as well as his fictions, essentially a story-telling animal. . . Deprive children of stories and you leave them unscripted, anxious stutterers in their actions as in their words. – Alasdair MacIntyre

On one level, we know that storytelling is critical to nurturing one’s creativity and imagination. Stories connect us to our families, to our experiences and to our lives overall.

Member Post

 

Recently, I have seen four movies about artificial intelligence. Ex Machina, the Machine, Automata and Her. I liked all four, but I could only recommend two because there is only so much time in the day. I think that this kind of selective elimination will become ever more present in our lives for two simple […]

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For those of you who are grammarians who are wincing at my title: step back! I’m not writing this OP for you anyway! Periodically those of us who have been hanging around here for a while decide to write a piece for those Ricochettis who are new or who are shy about posting. I know many […]

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It has often been noted how people make decisions based on feelings more than on reason. Right-wrong-good-or-bad, if we want to persuade people, we need to find ways to appeal to emotion as well as reason. I’ve found that stories that illustrate a principle are among the best ways to do that, and double the points if […]

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Sometimes, you just have to get away. And not on some random airline. I’m talking about a good old fashioned, back of the station wagon kind of road trip. A good family vacation of this sort always produces stories that you can tell for years, or at least it should. Not wanting my kids to […]

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The contract was beautiful. It was a work of art. My Mentor always said that contracts have to have two parts: what you get and what you give. There are other details, such as environmental considerations. For instance, what jurisdiction’s laws will govern the contract? But if you don’t have the exchange well-defined, it’s not […]

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How do the family stories even get started? I’m a Southerner, no matter where I was born and raised. My father’s family landed in Virginia before the Lees. Our particular patriline dipped south of the border into North Carolina after a few generations and then a few generations later started moving westward. Our forefathers went […]

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What you are about to read is true.  Well, mostly true, and not nearly as exciting as yesterday’s great snowball fight, or the death-defying toboggan run from the day before.  The passage of 30 years tends to muddy the recollection, but the story I am about to share remains a fixed part of my personal […]

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As I was reading and enjoying She’s lovely Surprise post this afternoon, my mind went back to an episode I witnessed almost exactly 3 years ago, one that deeply affected me at the time, and still does. I live outside the city proper, so the morning commute to get my kids to school and myself […]

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In the spirit of Halloween, I thought I’d tell a few stories.  Three of them happened to people I knew, and one might be an urban legend.  All four stories involve someone making a rapid exit.  The rapid exits are from a cemetery, a church, a house and a fast food restaurant.  I hope some […]

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