The TimeWarpVille Enigma

Good morning readers.  Thanks for coming by for a read this morning.

1919 American Legion Post – Now Kimble County Historical Society Museum

I’ve poked a little fun at Junction, Texas.  Partly because they were there, I was there, and it’s an easy target, standing still gazing into the headlights.  But the stark reality is the people of Junction aren’t significantly different from you, me, and all the people living around us.  They’re trying to scratch out a living in a country that’s caving in around them, trying to hang on to what hasn’t caved in yet.

Trying to find something that works by throwing grappling hooks into things that worked in the past.  And when they see it’s not working, blaming the failures on people who are trying to reconstruct different things from somewhere else in the past.

That $3.50 per gallon gasoline sign is a disaster in rural Texas where the nearest somewhat large town’s a $20-$30 round trip.  Same as everywhere else in the western US.  It means the price of having groceries delivered to stores in town will skyrocket over time, and driving to the larger stores in larger towns will skyrocket alongside what’s happening locally.

Aside from some agriculture, nobody in Junction, Texas, is manufacturing anything anyone wants to buy locally, anyone would want to buy elsewhere in the US, or overseas.  Same as where you are, only in Junction it’s more obvious. 

But their toasters, microwave ovens, automobile parts, refrigerators and computers are manufactured in Asia, same as yours.  There’s nobody in town can repair most of them when they fail without obtaining parts manufactured in Asia.

So they fantasize about seceding.  Pretending they could go back to the independence of the past.  Pretending that would bring back ways to make an honest living.  Celebrating their tough, Comanche fighting, Confederate ancestors, pretending they have something in common with them.

While on the other hand, they try to imagine they have something in common with people a decade ago who died when an airplane crashed into a building a quarter-mile high.  Grasping for some abstraction of solidarity with the people there, some anchor that pretending they remember those people might provide to help them deal with a world collapsing around them.

In a real sense, they do have something in common with those 9/11 dead, beyond them all being human beings.  The people who jumped out of those towers weren’t manufacturing anything anyone would want, either.  If they were living today they’d be paying big bucks for gasoline, groceries, toasters, manufactured somewhere else, too.

But there’s nothing else meaningful those unfortunate people in New York could have to say to people in Junction, Texas.  If asked, I suppose they might suggest, “Build higher buildings.”

The road from Main Street to the graveyard is easier to follow in Junction, but nothing else is less complicated than anywhere else.

Old Jules

8 responses to “The TimeWarpVille Enigma

  1. Solid, spare piece- the best kind of writing, a PLEASURE TO READ.
    You’re singing my song. I am so sick and tired of working 24/7 to eek out a living that I could gnash my damn teeth, while wailing and wringing my damn hands.
    What have I got to bitch about anyway? I have clean running water, modern conveniences, a roof over my head, and I don’t have to chase a chicken around the yard to wring her neck before I pluck her and cook her for dinner. It could be a whole helluva lot worse.
    I’m spoiled. I want time off, away from the unrelenting noise of modern life. There is nothing special about me that deserves more than anyone else. I should just shut up and deal with it.
    You know I won’t.

    • elroyjones: If I had any answers I’d tell you, but you wouldn’t believe them anymore than I’d be likely to believe them, my ownself, if I had some. “It ain’t often easy and it ain’t often kind,” is the only piece of wisdom from the past I can think of to apply to it. And that’s from some bubblegum group of the 1960s. But there’s a whole graveyard out there full of people who couldn’t have offered anything better the last minute of their lives. Gracias, J

  2. And they want to believe so bady they believe what they get on Fox an AM radio. That they will rise up and will eventually attain what the rich have.

    Life has to go on and but it’s harder now because of those damn libruls.

    • Hi One Fly. True of some of them, certainly. Maybe a lot of them. Probably local inclinations get pulled that direction because they know where it is on the radio dial. But if someone librul’s offering up any treasures of insight, any solutions to fundamental problems there, or anywhere else, I haven’t noticed it. Damned libruls, damned conservatives, damned rich aristocrat patricians, damned bum street people, damned occupiers, damned environmentalists and environmental rapers all have in common they aren’t offering up any way out of the rat-trap. Gracias, good seeing you, and thanks for drifting in. Jules

  3. In many respects all of America is in a time warp. You consider gas prices to be high at $3.50 or more a gallon. That is a reality most of the rest of the world does not have the luxury to face. I just came back from a short vacation road trip through the New England States where the cost of gasoline varied from $3.59 to $3.89 a gallon. In Toronto gas was $1.30 a liter when I filled up to get started. And in Montreal it was $1.43 a liter for my last leg of the drive home. One U.S. gallon = 3.78 liters. Do the math. That’s close to a $5 gallon in Toronto and $5.40 in Montreal. Yet somehow you learn to live with sticker shock and find new ways to earn a living that pays the bills.

    What’s interesting is the talk of secession in Texas. There is a parallel in Quebec. Wouldn’t you think that the Quebecois would be up in arms about gasoline prices and ready to pull out of Canada? Well surprisingly separation is not high on their priority list at present. They just want to get along with their lives, drink beer, watch hockey, and enjoy what remains of the summer.

    As always I enjoy your prose. I have a very colorful view of your world because of your descriptions. Much appreciated!

    • Lenrosen: Glad you came by and I welcome your thoughts. I’m guessing Canadians are roughly as concerned about what Texans pay at the gasoline pump as I am about what they pay. With approximately the same significance in the lives of either. Although priorities in the lives of Quebecois, if you’ve described them accurately, aren’t all that far removed from the priorities of average US citizens between livid discussions of politics. Much of which stands a reasonable likelihood of changing both places as the future climbs down to visit with a scowl. Gracias, Jules

  4. I try to live in my own little world. I like my world and I will protect it with force if necessary. But it is impossible to stay in my world. We have to venture out into other peoples’ worlds just to get what we need and take care of health issues. Bummer…

    • Hi DizzyDick: When you get out there in their worlds if you’ll tell them how it was back home and how they ought to solve their problems the same way you’d solve yours if you knew how, likely they’d be sorely interested. Same as you would if they came explaining how you should do it the way they did, or wish they did, back home. Maybe going out into their worlds is necessary, but it probably doesn’t qualify as helpful unless you’re just there to buy something they’ve got. They probably aren’t interested in whether you’re interested in what they had for breakfast, who lives upstairs from them, or what sort of drugs their kids snort. Just speculating. Gracias, J

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