Saturday, July 05, 2008


Being the loser that I am these days, I’ve spent my Independence Day weekend slacking, cooking, and suffering with dial-up internet access as I house sit for Shelley in Bum Fuck, Texas. Her DSL modem hasn’t come in yet, so I signed up for NetZero dial-up access so I can at least keep up with my email while I’m here. I forgot how painful dial-up is, and how slowly naked women stream over a 56Kbps connections. ;-)

One of the highlights of my weekend has been watching five hours or so of the documentary miniseries The Revolution on the History Channel. Another highlight was re-reading some old family letters; and I do mean old. The letters date back to just beyond revolutionary days. The oldest letters I have are dated 1790. When I read them, I go back in time and wonder how my ancestors lived. I wonder if they could ever have imagined a descendent in San Antonio, Texas would be reading, transcribing, and cataloging their letters.

Reading those old letters and watching The Revolution got me to thinking. Listening to some of the wonderful writing of the statesmen of those days got me thinking too. It got me to thinking about how words such as liberty, freedom, and patriotism have been cheapened so very much in the years since September 11, 2001.

A patriot isn’t someone who supports an administration’s autocratic decision to attack a country that didn’t attack us. A patriot isn’t someone who believes in his government blindly. A patriot isn’t someone who condemns his fellow countrymen as traitors for not supporting an ill-advised war. And a patriot isn’t someone who simply wears a uniform or serves in one of the three branches of our nation’s government. A patriot is so more than that.

I won’t pretend that I can define a patriot right now, but I do know that putting an American flag sticker or a “support our troops” magnet, or a “God bless America" sticker on your car doesn’t mean shit.

The next time you’re thinkin’ you’re all patriotic and shit – think about what you do for your country. Think long and hard about how you contribute to the success, prosperity, and future of your country. Chances are you’re not doing a God damned thing; so peel the "patriotism" off your car and get busy doing something other than giving lipservice.

This is my all-time favorite family letter. It’s from a woman named Patty Pomeroy to one of my ancestors, Lucinda Knowlton, of New Fane, Vermont. The date is 1790.

Page 1
Page 2

Outside of Stationery/Envelope:
Miss Lucinda Knowlton
New Fane

Northfield August 19, 1790

My Dear Lucinda

Are you disposed to hear how
I have been since I last saw you – I have been cleverly and hope to hear the same of you –

We had quite a delightsome ride from Newfane to Brattleborough and there went to dinner at Mr. Dickinson and from thence to Northfield we had an agreeable ride all we wanted to make us happy was your company – I fully expect a visit from you in the month of September and have promised myself a great deal of pleasure and satisfaction in spending a few hours in Lucinda’s company.

Indeed my dear I must need say I can’t help taking it a little unkind from you in not writing me more frequently when I was at Newfane – Out of sight out of mind is an old proverb, and I am afraid that Patty is little thought of when absent, yet I cannot willnot [sic] doubt the sincerity of your friendship. That would be to injure myself as I am not conscious of having done any thing [sic] to forfeit it – I would not on any account, so much as have it thought that I had not a heart capable of a sincere and tender friendship ~~~~~~~~~~

I have always from the first of my acquaintance with you esteemed you as one of my sincerest friends. I don’t wish to tire your patience quite out – So I must subscribe myself by desiring you to make my compliments acceptable to the social circle. and respect to your par and marm ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Patty Pomeroy
Miss Lucinda Knowlton.

P.S. Mrs. Dickinson and Anna send their love to you

Lucinda I have one piece of news to tell you that is
I rode half a mile__ the other day without any __illion.


By clicking here you'll see that Lucinda Knowlton was a daughter of the Honorable Luke Knowlton, a judge in Vermont and son of Deacon Ezekial Knowlton.


American Hill BIlly said...


Cheer up mother fucker. I am as well in the dog house...bedroom. Apparently it is hell when I am out. Unlike you I've downed 14 soon to be 16 in a second, legal Xanex, and 3 or 4 shots of rum.
I didn't waste my time reading the ladies letter, but your topic of how words are used incorrectly, I found very interesting! I've been commenting on that very subject lately at other blogs.
For a simple, and short example Liberal.........Truly is some one that believes in absolute freedom.
You have legal definitions, proper definitions, and sland such as: up yo' ass Beeaach.
It is funny how people are so easily conned on verbiage. On another note:

I have some current business at hand. I will keep posting, but please no one be offended when I don't come to your different, and very excellent sites as much. All I ask is that you do read what I research, and if in protest, then do not comment. The Business must take my time for the current while.

Peace and Freedom

Woozie said...

^ lolwut

Shelley said...

Ah, yes. The good ol' 1790s when women were really "on the rag" - literally. To live in those years...ewww! Anyways - I'm back, I missed you, and am glad to see you again.

Your letters (having heard or read them) are great. Thanks for sharing them.

BTW - I agree wholeheartedly on the "patiotism" thing. These people with the faded flags who think they are more American than me, because I am not flying one, can go to hell!! Oh, and in a hand basket.

Shelley said...

pil·lion –noun 1. a pad or cushion attached behind a saddle, esp. as a seat for a woman.

Carlos said...

American Hillbilly: I have my motherfucking moments. Sometimes I’m good – sometimes I’m not. Today was so-so. Yesterday was nice after work. So what the fuck’s going on with you? Email me and catch me up.

Woozie: Up y’ass.

Shelley: Missed you too. Now I miss you again that you’re gone…again. And thanks for the definition. I’m going shopping tomorrow!

Shelley said...

Had a nice evening in Reno. Dinner with a bunch of folks from work. Didn't get drunk...proud of me? Miss you again.