Hey, Baby...It's The Fourth Of July!
Fireworks keep going off, and the smell of burnt gunpowder still wafts through our neighborhood. There were fire engine sirens racing down the long unimpeded surface street above us to put out fires at unknown houses an hour ago. The odd pops and crackles keep going off, and I hear the mis-timed firings of unpredictable pistons in Harleys flying up the freeway in commemoration.
Today was a good day. A great day. It was sunburn-sunny in the Northwest, and hot. Lord Wife and I took Lord Running Boy out to play with his busy bosom-cousin of the same age, to him whose whole family was dropped onto us like a god's surprising beneficence a year and slightly more ago. I'm up suffering from the indigestion of overindulgence, grateful as I am and was, of too much Copper River salmon, potato salad, and grass-fed Oregon cows. As parents, we slathered the naked little bodies of our white sons as best as we could with sunblock every hour, and we set them loose in solar rays and spraying waters until the light was failing and they were finally going down. Until our young charges, these soulmates and partners in crime, had to bid each other exhausted and regretful goodbyes.
There were pyros out there in the suburbs, and we were just four couples on an acre of back yard land amidst the proceedings of millions of explosions. Our political perspectives may not be in the same quadrants, they probably run the gamut, and by common consent we lit no fireworks. Others did it for us. But to quote Britannicus, the exiled son of Claudius during the reign of Nero, from Robert Graves' 'Claudius the God:'
I don’t believe in the Republic anyway. You can’t reverse the course of history. My great-grandmother Livia said that, and it’s true. I love the days of old, as you do, but I’m not blind. The Republic is dead, except for old-fashioned people like you and Sosibus. Rome is an empire now and the choice only lies between good Emperors and bad ones.”The Founders cannot protect us now. They were wise, and their wisdom will inform us, but they are long gone. The cannons and rifles they shot in anger are now being echoed in hollow, decorative explosions. The only way for us is forward.
(Hat Tip to Pat Lang at Sic Semper Tyrannis.)