Friday, July 04, 2008

Regarding July Fourth

John Adams to his wife, Abigail, 3 July, 1776*:

“It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more. You will think me transported with Enthusiasm but I am not. I am well aware of the Toil and Blood and Treasure, that it will cost Us to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. Yet through all the Gloom I can see the Rays of ravishing Light and Glory. I can see that the End is more than worth all the Means. And that Posterity will tryumph in that Day’s Transaction, even altho We should rue it, which I trust in God We shall not.”

*The Patriot Post published this quote as part of a larger essay on July Fourth on 7/2/08 vol. 8 no. 27

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Demolition Derby

Sunday was a lazy day around the Quarter Acre. We spent the day lounging on the porch, and I smoked some ribs and a pork butt (along with a couple of cans of baked beans and two hot dogs -- which were really delicious). Child Two went down the street for a play date with some friends and I hung around, drank a beer and chewed the fat before returning to the smoker to add coals.

I returned to the neighbors' house with some ribs and beers and enticed them and their four kids to come down for dinner. We ate the smoked meat, drank some PBRs and had some blueberry pie and vanilla ice cream for dessert -- a great summer meal and my best smoked meats yet. After dinner the six kids, ranging in age from 2 to 8 years old went out to the yard and ran around. The two two year olds started playing a game where they pretended that they were race cars.

They would stand on the hill, at the edge of the lawn, stick their arms out and then start running after saying "ready, set, go . . . " Within a few minutes the older kids (a pair of nearly-5-year-olds, a 6 year old and an 8 year old) joined in. They'd all line up, stick out their arms, say ready set go and then run pell-mell all over the back yard. Eventually, they started crashing into each other, and knocking each other over. There were some hits-from-behind, but by and large the contact was clean and hard. It was very funny to watch and referee and and the two year olds were so proud that they'd invented a game of such fun.