I was getting my hair cut the other day. My preferred stylist of many years, Bobbi H. was regaling me with the recently aired revelation that billionaires in the Midwest (Kansas and Missouri, to be specific) are buying up vacated government missile silos and converting them into survival condos…preparing for the inevitable civil war/class holocaust. The idea is that when the economy finally tanks, those who have purchased either half a level or an entire level of missile-silo condo space will be able to live out the struggle in relative comfort. Pretty good idea.
There’s more. Those not thrilled with the landlocked approach are constructing – at a secret, hidden location, mind you – arks for the purpose of sailing away into the sunset when life on the land mass becomes unbearable. Yes, I did say ARKS. Being a claustrophobe, I much prefer the latter alternative. Like it matters. Last time I checked, I wasn’t on any paranoid billionaire’s short list. Surprise me.
This wasn’t really what I wanted to talk about. This discussion, which amounted mostly to Bobbi talking and me nodding my head (carefully), led to me revealing my long held theory regarding the popularity of western movies among Baby Boomers and Before-Baby Boomers. I love Westerns. Far more than I did as a kid, even. I have noticed that this is, in fact, a widely held preference among my peers, contemporaries, and that small remnant of my family that still walks this earth. Male or female. Well-off or not-so. Intellectual or not-so. We all love Westerns. You know why?
Clint Eastwood, like John Wayne before him, and like every tough guy that ever sat a celluloid saddle, knows what his options are. The issues are clear, the outcome straightforward. And although even Westerns of late have managed to blur the contrast between the black hats and the white hats, we can still depend on the average Oater to provide a welcome measure of that which has eluded us in real life of late.
Yup. Clarity. And let’s not forget rugged individualism. NOTE: I’m reminded here of a line that a dear departed friend of mine used to throw out at an occasional poker game or all-night RISK tournament: “There were no masses in Dodge City.”
Clarity. Rugged Individualism. A dash of simplicity. And a little less awareness of what is going on in the world EVERY SECOND OF EVERY MINUTE OF EVERY DAY.
And before some of you jump on that one, I am a big fan of awareness. I just think that a little less would do a lot of us some serious good. I do appreciate the fact that clarity and individualism and simplicity and escape from the sometimes deafening soundtrack of our lives are still is available to us – if only just in the stories we prefer to snuggle up with.
That’s it. That’s all. Happy Trails.