A while ago

I signed up for this thing called “Informed Delivery”. It’s a US Postal Service …ah, “service”, that tells you via email what mail is arriving at your house in the next day or two. Usually there is a picture of the piece of mail, so you know who it’s from and so on. Today’s email had a picture of something which was offering a free covid test, limit one per household. I guess the people running the health dept, have an excess of these things, so they’re trying to get rid of them. On the image of this ‘mail’ it said, “Note. No physical mail is associated with this notification”. At least they’re saving money on the printing and mailing cost. Yesterday I was watching a story on the BBC about research being done on “Long Covid”. Nobody can figure out how to get rid of it, or even what it really is. The one thing they never ask or talk about is “was the the person vaccinated or not?” For such a mystifying and complex problem you’d think you’d want to cover all the bases, but no. They never ask that question, ever.

If only…

On Sunday there was a big line at the Tractor Supply store. I started chatting with the dude in front of me. He was a bearded, rough looking fellow, and as is usual now, because everything in the world is so crazy, we started talking about how messed up everything was. I said to him that it is almost like actual demons are running around controlling things. I also said that I didn’t want to sound too religious about it, but it was the best way I could describe it. Not only did he agree with me, but he said he thought we were indeed in the biblical “End Times”. He went on to to say that his daughter had introduced him to the TikTok app, which he had initially thought was complete garbage until he realized in his words, “it knows what you’re looking for and shows you only those things.” He said it is amazing, and he’s found so many people and resources, that fit his interests.

At that point somebody in line behind me started muttering, “It hurts my head, it hurts my head.” I turned around and saw a short, balding overweight man in his mid 40’s. He had a T-shirt on which said, “Percolated”. I thought this was very funny. I looked at him and said, “Don’t worry, it’s gonna be alright.” Given that Vermont is Liberal central and the most vaccinated state in the Union, you might expect someone like that, but this was New Hampshire for crying out loud. It was close the the border, however. “Live Free or Die” is the official New Hampshire state motto. The phrase was adopted from a toast written by General John Stark, New Hampshire’s most famous soldier of the Revolutionary War. In July 31, 1809, poor health forced Stark to decline an invitation to an anniversary reunion of the Battle of Bennington. Instead, he sent his toast by letter. “Live Free or Die. Death is not the worst of evils”, it said.

General Stark – Live Free or Die. See that cannonball? I will use it if I have to.

Stark was an interesting character. In 1752 on a hunting trip with his brother, he was captured by Abenaki Indians and taken to Canada. While their prisoner he was made to run a gauntlet of warriors armed with sticks. Stark grabbed the stick of the first man in line and started attacking him with it, much to the surprise of everyone. The chief was so impressed by this act of bravery, that Stark was adopted into the tribe as one of their own. He spent the winter with them before finally returning to New Hampshire where he lived until the age of 93, exactly199 years and 8 days ago. Live Free or Fucking Die. Amirite?