Sunday, March 11, 2018

Farewell, old Friend

Farewell, old Friend
The Agony of its Witness
By Stephen L. Wilmeth

            She was there in the drought.
            In southern New Mexico, that tends to mean at least every other year if not every single one. She was a blond, which in her case, was certainly appealing. She was quite a looker always holding her weight and her figure as if she was a perennial fashion statement.
            She was a kind soul. When her peers could be unruly or objectionable, she could be counted upon to be solid. She demonstrated that even in the difficult departure. The group had milled around before she took control and led them up the alleyway and loaded.
            She was a horned matron and she did nothing but give of herself. For the past two years, she was starting to show the effects of the wear and tear of a lifetime battle with our desert country. In the end, it was more humane to let her go, perhaps to better conditions where she could produce yet another big, gentle calf of her image, than to witness her struggle and decline.
            There is little doubt, though, of my state of mind … I will miss her.
            When Daylight Savings Time was first imposed on New Mexicans, I would always have to smile when I visited the immaculately cared for little white house in the bottom of Sacaton. That is when we all still wore wrist watches and the dreaded imposition by the Crown had been made by adjusting the hour. That nuisance wasn’t going to be honored in that Rice home, though. The hour hand remained unchanged since time was first marked there.
            “You haven’t changed your clock,” was the observation.
            “Nope, and it is not going to be,” the reply sounded. “We’ll catch back up next fall.”
            Indeed, it was true the independence of living a ranch life perhaps allowed such a demand to be ignored, but there was also something more. My great uncle and aunt were only tolerant to a certain point when dealing with the reach of government. Imposing conditional demands on the natural rhythms of their personal lives was not going to be one of them.
            The fact is we don’t have any idea why we go through the gyrations of adjusting our clocks and, thus, our lives. We are told it is energy savings, but any suggestion of that as fact has long been lost in the woodwork. We live in a 24 hour cycle and any adjustment one way or the other can be assessed as good or bad from that perspective.
            The State of Arizona seems to get along very well without adjusting their clocks twice a year. If anything, their decision to reject the nonsense of upsetting the circadian rhythms of their lives probably assures a more natural reaction to the length of daylight hours.
            Why do we do this?
            Why do we allow some knuckleheaded bureaucrat or career politico to remind us his calendar note says today is the day? It certainly isn’t law and even the most dumbed down subscriber of the demands of central control cannot provide any semblance of objective rationale much less some special sign of the current solstice.
            Daylight Savings Time is stupid. It is an insane demonstration of conformity and surrender of the most basic of natural rights. Some scientist could probably even prove the long run health risks of its herkie jerky rendering of the spring ahead and fall back exercise. The problem is the summary would mirror whatever conclusion the grant administrator wanted to prove.
We have learned full well what contrived science is.
            The Agony of its Witness
            The special couple that lived in that wondrous place anchored to that white house in the bottom of Sacaton are gone. Gone also is their defiance of central authority’s time imposition on their lives. What remains is their memory as a worthy symbol of the true measure of time and its passage. They remind us of too many things that are manifested through completed calendars.
            My father is going to be 90 years old this week.
            I have a cousin who is wanting to get words down in a more tidy form to capture the events of his life and surroundings before failing health disallows him to function.
            I no longer can count the loss of school mates on one hand. I can’t even get it done on three!
            I also have two trusted equine friends who are reaching a point where decisions have to be made and I dread it as much as I dreaded making that decision on that wonderful old horned cow. They are standing outside in the darkness waiting for me to throw their morning feed oblivious to the manipulated time of day.
            The passage of time is hard enough without inventing some other imposition!
            Forgive me for my intolerance and absence of patience today, but messing with my time is no longer just a demonstration of poor manners. It is a breach of any suggestion of limitation of authority. We are ruled by much more nonsense than substance and we act like it is normal and customary. It is not and it is a good time to at least fix the spring forward and fall back madness.
            The problem is trying to find one mime of government who even knows who controls this mob exercise in sheep culture. It’s all kind of like hearing the words of the planned reduction of regulations imposed upon us. The regulators of the regulators don’t live on our horizons even though we are the targets of the regulation, reregulation, modified regulation and reconditioned regulatory migration.
            I am going to go feed now and thank my equine friends for their loyalty. If I know them, though, they will salute me by lifting their tails.

            Stephen L. Wilmeth is a rancher from southern New Mexico. “The updated version of the Dictionary of Sensibility defines Daylight Savings Time as ridiculous.”

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