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Passions in Poetry

Has Anyone Seen this on PBS?

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Poet deVine
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Hurricane Alley


0 posted 04-30-2002 02:51 PM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine


Last night, I couldn't sleep. I wasn't in the mood for the computer so I turned on the TV. I found a gem on PBS.

It's titled "Frontier House" and it's the continuing REAL story of 3 families who volunteer to become pioneers in authentic 1883 Montana.

The three families are:

A young teacher and his father from Boston. The teacher is engaged and will get married there in the frontier setting when his bride joins him in 2 months. Then his father will leave. They had to build their cabin themselves.

A junior college teacher and his wife (she's a school nurse) and their two kids from Tennessee. She is the 'control' freak/soccer coach who cringed when she saw the embroidery hoop. Their cabin was already completed before they arrived.

A business owner, his 'stay at home wife' (who has a degree in nutrition) their 2 sons, daughter and niece from California. They have to help build their cabin and until it's done, they sleep in tents.

Well! They spent 2 weeks 'learning' about how to live in the late 1800's. They practiced shooting, milking the cow, killing and cooking a chicken. Then they were ready to begin. They were given authentic handmade clothing and had photos taken the day before they were to leave. The stay at home mom cried because she wasn't allowed to wear makeup for the picture.

Then they set off...with 3 wagons and their horses and 3 cows. Because driving a team of horses is hard, they had someone do it for them. Good thing. About 1/3 of the way there, the horses on one wagon took off, tipping the wagon and nearly running down the California woman.

Then they got to a place in the road that was washed out. The pioneers walked while the trail bosses had the road fixed.

They spent the night in tents and the next day arrived at their homesteads.

Later, the neighborly bickering began. It's comical to see the breakdown in social skills!

The two California girls smuggled makeup and shampoo and had to 'confess' and turn it over. It took a few weeks to finish this family's cabin and even then, there was no door.

If you can get this in your area, I recommend it!
Christopher
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Purgatorial Incarceration


1 posted 04-30-2002 03:23 PM       View Profile for Christopher   Email Christopher   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Christopher

I don't watch TV, but these kind of things sometimes make me wish i had easy access to cable (i refuse to pay $40.00 a month for something i would use at most a couple hours out of the month). i find it interesting that these people would be so attached to something as banal as makeup... maybe i just hang around with a different kind of girl... the ones i know wouldn't have a problem with it. Sounds like an interesting show though.

Better yet... i'd like to BE one of these people!!!

On a somewhat related note - i had the opportunity? to watch "Fear Factor" a week or so ago. Now THAT looks like fun. (minus the pig rectums... bleh... of course i did get a marksman badge in the navy, so i'd probably have been able to hit the target... brrr)

Poet deVine
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2 posted 04-30-2002 04:07 PM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

One of the men in the show made an interesting observation - the women of the 1800's cared more about covering their bodies than the woman today. But the women today care much more about the 'makeup mask' they have to have. He wondered if women today worried more about getting older...it was an interesting thought.

I've TRIED to watch Fear Factor but I don't see the point...you want to stick your head in a tub of snakes for WHAT? Money? No way..not enough of it in the world to make me do that.
Skyfire
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3 posted 04-30-2002 05:41 PM       View Profile for Skyfire   Email Skyfire   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Skyfire

I'd be okay with the snakes, but the spiders? No.

As for the pioneer thing, that'd be cool! I'd miss my computer though...
Ron
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4 posted 04-30-2002 08:50 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

This falls under the category of very strange coincidences.

Some of you might remember me mentioning, a week or two ago, that I had recently discovered a hidden swamp on my property? The back of my land adjoins a heavily wooded area, with the last forty or fifty feet of my yard merging into the wild. Most of my share of nature included small sumac trees (not the poison kind, fortunately), surrounded by wild blackberry vines. You know, the kind with 40 thorns for every inch of vine? Impenetrable. But in addition to the nuisance plants, I found three black cherry trees (two mature and topping forty feet), some beautiful poplar, a few elms, and a dozen or more pin oak trees. And a teeny, tiny mulberry tree. All backdropped by four pines that tower nearly 80 feet into the western sky. All the property along my dirt road was flat corn field twenty years ago, so mature trees are a rarity and worth saving (and savoring).

I spent most of yesterday with a farm tractor, a friendly Amish neighbor, and my brother "clearing land." We'd hook chains around a sumac, then yank it out by the roots. Over and over and over. There were several dead elms that had to be pulled down, a wild bush with roots that reached clear to Pellucidar, and of course those dreaded thorns. The vines were finally conquered by trampling them with the tractor, then using my riding mower to cut them to ground level.

I have 26 trees ordered, ten for this Spring and the rest to be planted in September, along with a variety of hosta and ground cover. I've also ordered lilac bushes of various hues to put along the property lines to provide eventual privacy. I've laid out where the humming bird plants and feeders will go, the more conventional bird feeders, and the picnic tables. It'll take a few years, but it'll be a nice little shade garden some day.

At the end of the day, the three of us sat atop a small hill, directly beneath the giant pines, looking down at our handiwork. We were exhausted. And sore. And, after driving through those thorns for two hours, I was even a little bloody. Coincidentally, the conversation turned to what it must have been like a hundred years ago, to clear land for farming with nothing more than a horse or two for muscle. Not just for the relatively small park I envision, but for tens of acres of tillable land. And no hot shower to end the long day.

I can tell you right now, I don't think I would have survived.

On the other hand, I spent most of today behind a roto-tiller, and starting the long process of moving and layering three dump-truck-sized loads of top soil. If you've never operated a roto-tiller, just imagine a hundred pounds of severely vibrating metal with a mind of its own, going in every direction except the one you want. Frankly, a horse and plow are sounding pretty good tonight. Almost as good as that hot shower.
Nan
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5 posted 04-30-2002 10:59 PM       View Profile for Nan   Email Nan   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Nan's Home Page   View IP for Nan

Picturing you and Larry out there with your Amish friend, making your yard even more splendiferous than it was makes me smile...

You didn't bother my little bunny friends did you?.. or the chipmunks?... Better NOT!..
Poet deVine
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6 posted 05-01-2002 02:28 AM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

Ron, you sound exhausted...but I can also hear the excitement in your words too. Are you building a park just for you or are you planning a 'poetic' picnic spot for weary poets?

**

Tonight's episode of Frontier House:

Mrs. Tennessee and her hubby are having trouble. Until they came to 1883, he didn't know SHE wanted to wear the pants in the family. She is the one who rode to the 'general store' for supplies (he jokingly said it was best because if he got back after a 2 day ride and forgot something, there'd be heck to pay!). She bought her stuff and offered to do any laundry the shopkeeper needed doing - this way they could make extra money. They could also sell baked goods, eggs, produce, etc.

Mr. California bought double what he got in the beginning. He spent almost $170 of his credit and even went in the red for some of it. Meanwhile, everyone in that cabin whined about not getting enough food. Mr. Calif. was cutting hay and felt weak and dizzy. Then he proceeded to show off his 'pelvic bones' to show how malnourished he was. The Missus and the kids sneaked off to a nearby farm (modern) and traded baked goods for some elk and deer meat. The kids even watched a bit of TV while in the neighbors house. This was totally against the rules. They were afraid they'd get the boot, but since they claimed 'hunger' and promised to never do it again, they were allowed to stay. The show sent in a doctor to visit Mr. Calif. and the conclusion was that he had just had a touch of dehydration and then overexaggerated the rest of it. Then to make matters worse (and to irk Mrs. Tenn.) Mr. Calif. started a still!!! LOL He sold the moonshine to the shopkeeper and made some money.

Mr. Boston finally got married. His brother came out a few days before the wedding to help put a roof on the cabin. The bride came along with her family (everyone was in authentic clothes) and they had a really sweet wedding. A week after that, Mrs. Boston realized how life would be for her in 1883. Her hair frizzed WAY out..LOL...she kept it in braids to control it. Her first attempt at pancakes looked like a small volcanic eruption in a pan. She was surprised at the strain between the neighbors and decided that if she had to really live this way, she'd probably leave.

Mr. and Mrs. Tenn are probably going to get a divorce, they fight constantly. Mr. and Mrs. Calif are upset that the are not having a more romantic time.

There is one more installment left. A group will come in to see how much food they have stored up, how much hay they cut and determine if they would be able to survive a winter(they will not have to do that - it was filmed last summer). Then it ends.

It's a great study in human nature as well as social history.
Mysteria
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7 posted 05-01-2002 02:59 AM       View Profile for Mysteria   Email Mysteria   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Mysteria

Sharon ~ This sounds neat so I will watch it.  I always thought if I could go back in time and live in any era that would be the one for me, so I will see if my mind is still the same after the show.


Hey Ron ~ When I was in Pennsylvania I saw an Amish farmer with "Clydesdales", yup I did, and took a picture to prove it. So, I was thinking maybe you could borrow some horses to pull a plough, and accomplish the same thing as a roto-tiller?  I hate those things, and watch your feet my man.  I almost lost one of my tootsies last year with one of those babies in my vegetable garden, and my arms felt like they were vibrating for days.   

It sure sounds nice what you are doing, and I know eventually all the work will be worth it.

Imagination is more important that knowledge
~* Einstein *~

Severn
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8 posted 05-01-2002 06:47 PM       View Profile for Severn   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Severn

It sounds cool...wonder if we'll get it over here sometime...

Hell..we're all pioneers over here anyway lol...

makeup? Huh? what's that? Shampoo?? Ug?

K
Nan
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9 posted 05-01-2002 08:45 PM       View Profile for Nan   Email Nan   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Nan's Home Page   View IP for Nan

You can evict that snake though...
Ron
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10 posted 05-01-2002 10:46 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

Nan, the rabbits are fine. I've made sure we left them a few places to call home. I'll abstain from commenting on the rodents, as I'm sure we have people here who actually think mice with stripes are cute. I don't, but since I can't get the roto-tiller more than a few inches underground, I think they're probably safe. A relative of your other friend, the one you almost stepped on, slithered across my brother's foot. I'm surprised you didn't hear him?

Sharon, a poetic picnic spot for weary (or was that wary?) poets never even entered my head. I really don't think that far ahead, I'm afraid. When I build things, it's usually just because it seems like a good idea and I figure it'll be fun. It was sort of like that three and half years ago, too, when I decided to build a web site.  

Sharon (the other one), I live right in the middle of a widespread Amish community. Sometimes, I think there are more horses in the area than deer, and we have a LOT of deer. I've never seen anything as large as a Clydesdale, though what the horses leave in the middle of the road is often big enough for a Clydesdale to hide behind.


nakdthoughts
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11 posted 05-02-2002 04:00 PM       View Profile for nakdthoughts   Email nakdthoughts   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for nakdthoughts

I caught a bit of a show the other night by chance and  kept returning to it out of curiosity..it wasn't on cable, Christopher.
I got  rid of cable when I became attached to this computer..it was  just on the local PBS stations.

I missed the beginnings and didn't know it was a series but I did enjoy watching the young son as he worked hard alongside his dad...   Was sad when he lost his pet chicken because it didn't produce eggs. I did close my eyes then...I am not sure if this  is the same show...

M
Poet deVine
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12 posted 05-02-2002 08:04 PM       View Profile for Poet deVine   Email Poet deVine   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Poet deVine

It was the same show.

Last night was the 3rd and final episode. The kids had to go to school for about 5 weeks. Before that, the parents had to fix up a one room shed and make furniture for the schoolroom, and agree to pay the teacher $54 a month.

At first the kids were bored...then they started to learn how to play guitars...they learned about the rocks they found, etc. All in all, they eventually got excited about learning and put on a program at the end of their 5 weeks.

One very sad scene touched me - a young boy and his dad were fishing and you heard the boy doing a voiceover. He said he loved it here because he and his dad got to do things together. They never got to at home. He said by the time his dad got home, the boy was in bed. (I shed a tear there)

Most of the people were sad to leave (yes, even the kids who started out hating it). Only Mrs. Calif. was glad. Mr. Tenn shed tears - he felt that this was truly a place where he found himself. Mr. Boston also cried, it was the time when his father was there with him building the cabin that was most memorable to him.

In the end, they were judged by the historical group to see if what they had prepared would have kept them through the winter. The young married couple would have been ok. The other two couples wouldn't have been able to survive the winter. The Tenn couple because they couldn't handle the close quarters (marriage trouble) and the Calif couple because they did too little too late (and cheated!).

Mr. and Mrs. Tenn are now separated. I think he would like to go back to the cabin.

Mr. and Mrs. Boston were on an extended honeymoon and hadn't decided what they wanted to do.

Mr. and Mrs. Calif moved into this HUGE mansion in Malibu. Mr. Calif traveled more for his company so Mrs. Calif just took care of the house and her 'things'.

The kids missed the 1883 life and I didn't think they would.

I would highly recommend viewing this if you can - it's an eyeopener.

So, anyone want to move to the woods and build a cabin with me? LOL
 
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