Monday, May 21, 2012

Barn floors and the meaning of life

The museum barn a couple of years ago during the annual July ice cream social. We've been able in other years to make room to serve ice cream just inside the front door. This year, we'll throw open all the doors and invite those who attend to dance.

I think it was fumes from that spray bottle of Formula 409, but it made sense briefly yesterday afternoon ---  while scooting on my butt across the floor of the museum barn --- to use the building's condition as the base upon which to build a metaphor about life in general. Back outside, fumes dissipated and I'm not going there, thankfully.

But all the fourth-graders in the school district are headed our way today for a morning of marathon historical tourism and we'll be throwing the barn doors open for the first time in several years. So it seemed like a good idea to grab the 409, introduced in the 1950s as a much stronger industrial degreaser, and clean up small puddles of oil left behind by a tractor that spent some time there earlier this spring while engaged in good works around the museum campus.

The barn's really a great building, constructed around the ancient pegged frame of a farm veteran that was disassembled and hauled into town several years ago. Then, when it was necessary to evacuate a gallery in another building to allow repairs, it became a warehouse. Not everything that was hauled across the patio was hauled back and the southwest corner became an impenetrable heap of stuff.

Then, the barn became the base of operations (and storage unit) when the blacksmith shop was under construction, virtually unusable for other purposes much of the time. Now its returning to life and, as Martha would say, that's a good thing.


Led to the link by Rachel Held Evans, I was interested yesterday in this post by Jonathan Martin, "On Mitt Romney, Liberty University and Civic Religion." Martin contends that the institutional church is evolving into a "civil" religion devoid of spiritual base and divided into "conservative" and "liberal" largely political wings. Instead of dismay, however, he expresses the hope that the trend might lead to room for "more authentic Christianity (that) can stand apart from all the parodies." Interesting.


Interesting, too, this TED (Technology, Entertainment and Design) talk by venture capitalist Nick Hanauer, who offers a take on the free market system not generally expected from venture capitalists.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the barn photo Frank. We were at that ice cream social and appear in the photo. We are so looking forward to hosting our family reunion in the barn this summer. Virginia