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Thursday, December 04, 2008

Smarty Pants

I have been told that homesteaders are a stupid bunch of people. Too simple in mind to do anything else. Oh, you haven't heard that? Try writing a homesteading article for an ezine that doesn't have a simple living theme, only the editor is really interested in it, and see what kind of comments you get back. What I find ironic, is that their "intelligence" narrows their thoughts and experiences into a very simple, straight line of thinking. I use to run with that "intellectual" group. We were some bad mo fo's, I tell you what. We disrupt entire coffee shops arguing over the evolution of the female breast, thank you Mr. Piers Anthony! We use to roam the streets of downtown, theorising US Governmental dictatorships, and get all knackered drinking expensive wines and playing trivia pursuit. Yep, I was that girl that you wouldn't bring home to mommy.

Then I met a genius. No, really. All those standard tests we took as children, all those college exams, said so. He wasn't merely above average, no this guys score shot him up to the 1%ers. He has something he calls the Bionic eye, he sees everything in straight lines and circles. Universities offered him free rides to help him on his path to receive his doctorate. But he didn't want it, he wanted a simple life. He didn't use large words to show his intelligence, when small words were readily available. He fell in love with the art of engineering, and the life that homesteading grants you. This man can do anything he sees. Not merely a jack of all trades, but a master of most. He taught me more than my "intellectual" cronies could ever do. He does suffer the consequences of choosing a life with little money, but he does it stoically.

And since I became a homesteader, I have learned that we instill a hatred in others. Being different, even though I have always been a little odd, changes when people no longer view you as being "smart". I use to be eccentric, but now I am a hill billy. (even though these people should be intelligent enough to realize that the term hill billy can not be used when describing me. If you wish to inflict accurate emotional bruising you need to use the correct topological terminology, I am a flat lander, or hick.) I have noticed that even if you sport many degrees, you are not worth much in the eyes of the masses. But you know what? It really doesn't matter. We are not better than them, they are not better than use. We use our skills differently.

More and more people have been stopping by, looking for ways to save themselves in another time of a Great Depression. Those people that called me names, compared me to Hitler (although Stalin would have been more accurate, he was big on the back to land movement, but for different reasons than I am) are asking me, their intellectual inferior, what steps they should take. I tell them, use your skills differently, apply the things you know to earn money, into skills you can do to live. I don't fear a Great Depression, I fear the desperate people that will come from a Depression. I worry about what they will do, what steps they will take to insure their survival. No longer would they use their intelligence to work out problems, but become feral instead. I will also state for the record that I do not believe another Depression is coming now, I know there will be one in the future, but the signs are not all there for one now.

This post is nothing more than my thinking out loud. I guess being a year older makes me think about a time when I was looked up to, and now find myself looked down upon. One would think it would bother me more than it does. But I have just about everything I want, no pity party here today. Yet there are times I miss hanging out with those bad mo fo's.


Anonymous said...

Great post phelan. I could relate on many levels.

Jen S. said...

I just happened upon your blog and LOVE it!! I love this post, I wish more people understood the hatred instilled in the backward (enlightened) thinking that is going on at this time. Keep up the great blog I have added it to my daily list!

Annette said...

I find it interesting how we each seem to have two people living within. I have the programer, binary code side of me and then the polite, homesteading side. I have only had to pull the programmer side out, when talking homesteading, once or twice. =)

MeadowLark said...

Thanks for thinking out loud.

(although I believe a Great Depression is right around the corner)

It's a pity there aren't more "hillbillies" during these times. :(

The Thinker said...

That's brings back memories of days when I thought being intelligent meant being superior. I have since learned that it really doesn't mean crap. ;) Good post!

Hey, I noticed that you have been adding pictures lately. Did you get a new camera?

Anonymous said...

I guess I never thought of homesteaders as any of those things but perhaps that's because I've always had an interest in it or perhaps because it seems my generation is more interested in "getting back to the land"

Irma said...

Not sure, but I think this may be my first comment.

Phelan, I could never hope to be as "smart" as you and your husband clearly are. I could never take that leap of faith, that confidence in my own abilitiees. I have nothing but the must humble and awestruck admiration for homesteaders. I'm sorry your experience has been different.

I love your blog, and it is encouraging me to expand my small garden next year. You are self-sufficient AND you are doing important educational work with the public. You rock.

Phelan said...

Farm mom, that's because you're a smart @$$ just like me :D

Jen S. Welcome! Glad you like it.

Annette, we all need some sort of meds, don't we?

Meadowlark, I see something else coming. Something a little worse than a depression.

The Thinker, no camera, I have been using old photos and free to use pics.

Badhuman, I guess it depends on which generation is insulting me. I am the last of gen x, my husband the first. We get mix reactions from our gen. Older gen seem to be more disapproving, while the younger say things like, you're hard core man. :D

Irma, I think it is too. Welcome! Oh don't think that way. I got a secret for you. I am a high school drop out. Not the smartest move ever, but there it is. Things change, you do things you are proud of and things you aren't. It took my many years just to try to go back to school. It was my husband's idea to move to the country. I wanted no part of it, I am a suburban girl! Somethings happened, and the garden started our journey to what we are today. Sometimes your smartest moves are made out of desperation. Good luck with your garden!

Woolysheep said...

I have experienced some of that snobbery from "intellectuals". The one that comes to the forefront of my mind is a family member. She is of the generation that fought WWII and has three kids. The oldest one is a rich retired CEO, the middle one is a retired teacher, and the youngest one is still working in a field that has him outdoors and mucking about in all kinds of weather. He has an IQ of over 150. He could have done almost anything we wanted but he found a career path he loved that didn't require a college education at that time and dropped out of college in his junior year. She always goes on about how that youngest is such a disappointment and sees him as her own personal failure because he never went the corporate or educational route like his siblings. Makes us want to smack her upside the head everytime she starts in on him but we love her anyway.

SilverSunbeam said...

Thanks for the encouragement, Phelan! (You didn't know you were writing something uplifting? Well, you were!)

We joked as my husband worked through is PhD program (aka Mid-Life Crisis) that all it would be good for is farming. Guess what we're about to do? Use that PhD Thesis to wallpaper the chicken coop!

I can hardly wait to be away from academics and intellectuals. Everyone thinks we're mad... Hooray! That means they're unlikely to visit!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I think that homesteaders and others who practice self-sufficiency are probably going to weather the storm, brought on by the economic climate around them, a lot better than the gen pop.

Simplicity might make one different, but certainly not weird. Being creative is a good thing; it is comforting and satisfying.


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