Pagt % Wttt Cravvn HlgMIghtt, May 8,1983
TTie Art Of
By JONATHAN PHILUPS
We leaned against the tractor, sipping a cold
beverage, as the boys (the term is used loosely, as
some of these gentlemen could more accurately
be called codgers) unloaded the bags of seed
peanuta We lifted not a finger to help them.
As the kids chased each other around the yard,
we sat or leaned on the pickup truck, watching
clouds begin to fill the April sky. Someof the boys
poured shots of an unknown liquid (mustVe been
ice tea, right?) from a half-gallon jug wrapped in
a paper bag.
The talk was of planting and wet fields; of
women and card games and local drunks seen
snoring in back seats of cars; of what I was doing
back from New Jersey and for how long and why
I went in the first place and people to look up in
New York or Perth Amboy.
We talked softball and fistfights and friends
just out of jail, un til darkness was so close u pon us
that the final pre-suppertime chores simply
would not wait another moment.
The we left.
There are those who would view a bunch of
guys sitting on a truck at the edge of a field,
talking trash and guzzling unknown liquids from
half-gallon jugs, as time-wasters.
I see it as therapy.
« * * • *
Everybody has a simple, one-shot solution for
the problems of our nation. Wanna hear mine?
Iln gonna tell you anyhow.
I firmly believe that notenough people take the
time to take a seat, lean against a tree, plop down
on the tailgate, or flop in the grass and simply
talk about things that may or may not be
important (probably not) and tell stories that
may or may be lies (probably are).
Vanceboro folks. I’ve said more than once, have
mastered the fine art of such visiting to the point
that they sometimes can dispense with the ~
^ JL.1I 1 P ^ P at a Artists Under the Dome
fnend s house and fall asleep.
by Lela Barrow
When we were knee-high to grasshoppers we
were taught: “What is worth doing at all is worth
doing well”. All else is nothing. “When you do
your best that is ail Grod requires of you”. Jesus
Christ was a working man — he was obedient to
hisparents, thinking of his mother’s welfare as he
hung on the cross. Work is honorable — all the
Great Men in life are working men. Teach young
children how to work.
I know a family who taught their young
children to work from early childhood. They had
their chores in the home just as their parents.
They were never quarreling, “Make John do this”
—when they were taken to visit, they were a
pleasure. Today as grown men they visit their
parents bringing well behaved grand .,
“Bring a child up in the way he shall go” —teach
them to behave while they are young. Let them
know what yes and no mean A lady told me
yesterday she had visited in a home where the
children are being taught obedience and work,
she really enjoyed her visit.
Here shows the opposite: Little Bobby, scolded
for being naughty, was asked by his mother,
“How do you expect to get to Heaven?” He
thought for a moment, then replied: “I’ll just run
in and out, and keep slamming doors until they
say, "For goodness sake, come in or stay out”.
Then I’ll go in. (Papara).
Four things in life: “One is manhood true and
good; One is womanhood noble and true; One is
child life, clean and bright; and one an altar kept
We are often spoken of as a generation gap, as
to the difference in age or years that we live; how
time changes the way we live. We live in a much
faster age now than when I grew up. The Bible
tells us there is nothing new that hasn’t already
been. The way people are now — wearing
shirtwaists, all ruffled and tucked; and shirts
with belts, go back to when I was a young girl, 75
years aga The rag-a-muffin sleeves almost came
back in style, had big pleates to make them stand
out large from shoulder toelbow - my sisters wore
them 85 years ago. Lela Barrow
A Parent’s Prayer
Abigail Van Buren
Oh, God, make me a better parent. Help me to
understand my children, to listen patiently to
what they have to say and to understand all their
questions kindly. Keep me from interrupting
them, talking back to them, and contradicting
then. Make me as courteous to them as I would
have them be to me. Give me the courage to
confess my sins against my children and ask
them forgiveness when I know I have done
May I not vainly hurt the feelings of my
children. Forbid that I should laugh at their
mistakes, or resort to shane and ridicule as
punishment. Let me not tempt a child to lie and
steal. So guide me hour by hour that I may
demonstrate by all I say and do that honesty
Reduce, I pray, the meanness in me. May I
cease to nag, and when I am out of sorts, help me.
0 Lord, to hold my tongue. Blind me to the little
errors of my children as those of their own age,
and let me not exact of them the judgements and
conventions of adults. Allow me not to rob them of
the opportunity to wait upon themselves, to think
to choose, Mid to make their own decisions.
Forbid that I should ever punish them for my
selfish satisfaction. May I grant them all their
wishes that are reasonable and have the courage
to withhold a privilege which I know will do them
Make me so fair and just, so considerate and
companionable to my children that they will have
geniune esteem for me. Fit me to be loved and
imitated by my children. Oh, God, do give me
calm and poise and self-control.
Copied by Lela Barrow
This prayer should be every parent’s prayer
But (me must not be that proficient to realize
the benefits of aimless visiting.
The thought of a gang of folks loungingaround
lying to eacholher makes some people livid. They
Aink: Waste of tine. Inefficient. Stupid. Better
things to do.
Admittedly, if that is all you do in life, you’re
gonna run into some problems. But for relaxing
the brain, easing the tension of modern life, and
in general getting mind and body Itock into
balance with the real world, such activity is, I
believe, necessary and beneficial.
It doesn’t matter where you do it. You can be
flopped in the den, discussing the fine points of
dogsled racing in front of Wide World of Sports.
You can be frying fish under the backyard shed,
talking dirty while your wives make the slaw
inside. You can be out in the yard, interrupting
your therapy to yell at the kids every three
But some people don’t know, or forgot, how to
do this sort of thing.
Take folks up north. Sometime during the
evolution of our species, some sort of mutation
took place somewhere north of Richmond, and
the specimens of Homo sapiens in that region lost
the sj}ili1y to sit back and talk trash.
They try sometimes, they really do. You can go
talk to Jimmy B, for example, about the Nets and
the Phillies and the USFL. The phone will ring
16 times in 16 minutes, however, and it just isn’t
Sometimes they go to bars and try to relax, but
Pianist Vincent the visiting program
Phillips continues the sponsored by the state
“Artists Under The arts council and the
Dome” series at the Department of Corn-
State Capitol Tuesday, munity Colleges. The
May 10 at 8 p.m. He is “Artists Under The
visiting artist at Dome” series continues
Craven Community Tuesday evenings
College in New Bern, through May 17 in the
His performance is House Chamber of The
part of a series State Capitol. Admis-
featuring members of sion is free.
it just isn’t like being under a shade tree or down
at the store, and it doesn’t work as well.
11 is perfectly (dcay to go to work and sit around
talking about parties, but these people go to
parties and sit around talking about their jobs.
A possible solution to this evolutionary
catastrophe above the Mason-Dixon line would
be to ship Yankees down south to relearn the art
of relaxation, the science of visiting, and the
te(iinique of easy living.
Getting the rascals down there is no problem.
But getting them out again is well-nigh
impossible. The only alternative, then, is for
southerners stuck in the northern wastelands to
attempt to lead by example.
With that in mind, I hereby pledge to spend a
portion of every day engaged in “unproductive”
activity, and to do this in such a way that at least
one other person is forced to listen to me and also
It’s the least I can do for mankind.
Vanceboro Strawberry Festival
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