Time marches on to a different drummer

Under the light of the moon on Tuesday, Feb. 7, some of the Old Men of the Mountain traveled to the Your Way Café in Schoharie. The moon was something to see.

The OGs commented on its brilliance and on how late in the morning it was shining its light on ole Mother Earth. When the sun came up, the moon was still hanging around.

One OF said, “What a combination! A beautiful sunrise!” and the OF continued, saying he could still be dancing by the light of the moon. This was an unusual start for the day.

Another OF made a different observation. He looked up at the beautiful moon in the early morning sky and thought we have already begun to “junk” it up with an old car, and other crap left up there.

The “junk” will probably sit there for years, become covered with moon dust, and a thousand years from now a group of moon archeologists will dig and find it. The archeologists will stare and ponder what they have found and comment, “What the heck is this? Sigh! Leave it to us.”



The OMOTM spend a lot of time in the past.

The discussion in many cases is on whom did you know, or who did you know, or who was responsible for this or that. Much was in the thirties, forties, and early fifties; in some cases though, it was earlier than the thirties.

These were firsthand accounts of times gone by; what was done, by whom, and in many cases how it was done. None of this conversation was gossip or nasty but how people farmed or where they lived and what they built or farmed with.

Some, or maybe more than some, were compared to today. One was about how big government with the money from large farms and developers killed the small farms almost on purpose, so the big farms could gobble up the smaller farms, or the developers could get the land.

One OF suggested that he thinks the legislators from the “City” still think brown milk comes from brown cows.

This scribe realizes that it is not possible to live in the past, but to have the memories the OMOTM have are stories that books are written about. The OFs talked about how much their parents paid for their farms — some were only in the thousands with single numbers in front.

One OF remembered how much his parents purchased their farm for in the early forties. The farm was 125 acres and came with all the livestock, and some of the equipment (which wasn’t much). The rest was auctioned off. The price was $16,000.

One OF said that nowadays one good cow can go for more than that.


Names with staying power

In many cases, discussing old times in small communities with groups like the OMOTM is like reading a history book.

At the breakfast on Tuesday morning, it was interesting to note how many of the names are still living in the area and these families were there when the Indians were running about.

The OFs started quite often by saying, “Do you remember so and so?”

Many OFs would know and reply, “Oh yeah, they had the place over yonder, and their son married so-and-so and they bought so-and-so’s place.”

The conversations would go like that over and over until the OFs covered almost everybody on the Hill or in Schoharie County.


Grammys disgust

The OFs did discuss a current event, but not for very long because it was a sorry excuse for what is current and acceptable in current times. (This scribe entered a brain fog, and had to use “current” three times in a row.)

However, one OF asked if anyone watched the Grammys. Many of the OFs at the table said “yes,” and all said, “For only a short time.”

It is tough to find something that disgusts the OFs but even a little bit of this show did. One OF thought 15 minutes was too long.

Another OF compared it to a freak show at the fair only most of those on the Grammys were freakier.

Still another OF said, if anyone really wants to know what is wrong with the country today, all they have to do is watch television shows and the news

The bad is so bad and so much of it was shown on the Grammys. If there was any good, the OFs missed it because they all turned it off or went to something else.

One OF wondered “When did all this weird stuff almost become so commonplace that it wins an award? Weird must be the new normal.”

That is when this OF left the show.

“Oh what we did when we were young drove our parents nuts; remember the duck-style haircuts, and cigarettes rolled up in the T-shirt sleeves, and rock and roll?”

“I can remember my parents saying: How can you listen to that stuff?”

This scribe must add: Time marches on to a different drummer and men’s bathing suits get bigger and women’s get smaller.

The Old Men of the Mountain who were fortunate enough to gather at the Your Way Café in Schoharie, many arriving by moonlight, were: Herb Bahrmann, Lou Schenck, Dick Dexter, Jack Norray, John Dab, Bob Donnelly, Dave Hodgetts, Elwood Vanderbilt, Mark Traver, Joe Rack, Roger Shafer, Ted Feurer, Dan Peletier, Rick LaGrange, Matt Ersclier, Roland Tozer, Russ Pokorny, Rev. Jay Francis, Jake Herzog, Jim Rissacher, Marty Herzog, Ed Goff, Miner Stevens, Robie Osterman, Bill Lichliter, George Washburn, Paul Nelson, John Muller, and me.

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