[Tweeters] Community Values

Jeff Gibson gibsondesign at msn.com
Fri Mar 6 09:35:45 PST 2015

It was a number of decades ago, when I first heard (or read, in the context of Timber Politics here in the wonderful Pacific Northwest), our great Old-Growth forest's referred to as "decadent, over mature timber". I remember being appalled that people could even think that way about a forest - and still am.
Why would anybody say something so rude and disrespectful? Well, it's just about the money, honey.
I imagine the old-growth as a wise old Grandmother. Oh sure, she's old as dirt, but still sharp as a tack. And the forest stories she has to tell - and will- to anybody who listens! But see, ol' Granny is sitting on a goldmine - she's rich. Unfortunately , the family has one branch ( raised primarily on video games and ORV's), who don't care about Grannies boring old forest anymore, and need to come up with some cash money for their lifestyle. Now.
Trouble is, Granny's still alive. So the questionable family branch sent a representative over to her house to parley - I just happened to be there, having a beer with Granny , when we heard the knock.
There stood ol' Uncle Ernie on the doorstep. "Well Granny" he started into it, "the family has been talking and we figured you, being so old and all, that you've had a pretty good run of it, so it's time you dropped dead and gave us our inheritance. Plus, there been some rumors around town about your decadent behavior and....". That's when Granny closed the door on Uncle Ernie's face. "Lets you and me get away from Mister Entitled Turd out there, and I'll tell you some forest stories. Would you get me another beer ? I could use one after hearing all that BS!" she said.
I handed Granny a cold beer, and sat down next to her on the couch.
"Thanks, honey. You're a good boy, always out in the woods feeling ferns and watching the birds! " she told me. I was just starting to get a little misty-eyed, when Granny burst out laughing, almost blowing beer out her nose.
" I can't believe that poor excuse of a relative out there - what a hoser!". Granny laughed and laughed. "Some people just don't get it , and maybe never will" she continued. " That 'decadent' thing - that punk out there has no idea what the hell he's talking about! Trouble is, he's afraid of the forest now - spent too much time playing with himself on his x- box or whatever."
" Some folks don't understand the community I've lived in my whole life. They seem to think it's like a retirement home, when really there's room for the old, the young, and the in between, because the community is always changing. See, geezers like me will fall over someday, providing opportunities for new growth in the future- we got the same chance when we were young. All ages living together! Oh sure, sometimes it takes a long time for things to change, but if you have no patience, you should find another community to live in" Granny continued.
"Like ol' Ernie out there, he might like it in one of those factory monoculture 'forests' like the neo tree-nazi's put together with their cloned uber-firs. More like cornfields than forest's, if you ask me. More like a tree version of the Stepford Wives, if you know what I mean.
Seems like nature folks could do one of those' Bio Blitz' inventories in those monoculture patches, in about 15 minutes. A Bio Burp they could call it. In my neck of the woods, it would take quite awhile - lifetime maybe." Granny was starting to wind down. " I'll split a beer with you, if you want" she asked. " Need to wet my whistle."
After a sip of beer, Granny got a little gleam in her eye. "Decadent!" she snorted. " Truth is, the forest if full of 'decadence' - rot, gambling (windstorms, fire, disease, are chances we play with) , not to mention half the forms of kinky sex ever invented. Thats nature. That reminds me, did I ever tell you about that fling I had with Fred Cedar about 500 years ago? He was a real stud at the time , and one day we........"
Jeff Gibsonlistening to the trees inPort Townsend Wa

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