The Trouble with Time Machines

A Candlelit Friday Night – 2016

The power went out about 4:40 yesterday afternoon, twenty minutes before our first Friday Nighters would be arriving.  We gave it a few minutes and then lit lanterns and candles and fire to stave off the darkness and chill.

“What’s going on?” asked our first guests.  “Are we having a ‘Back to the 1890s’ evening?”  Great idea, but “no” and we learned that it was apparently just Oysterville – PUD working on the line just south of town.

There was a period of time, years ago that we used only candlelight on the first Friday of each month.  Neither Nyel nor I can remember what happened to that plan.  Probably the dark season morphed into long days of sunlight and we lost sight of the idea (so to speak.)

Under threat?

When the lights came back on after about an hour, we were tempted to turn them all out and continue our candlelight evening.  But we didn’t.  The discussion had, by that point, turned serious and there seemed to be the need for the ‘cold light of day’ or at least the bright lights of the twenty-first century.  Under cover of darkness, the talk had turned to politics – perhaps a first in twenty years of our Friday Night Gatherings.

We talked about our two-party political system, what has happened to the concept of States’ Rights, the difficulties of law enforcement (traffic laws, burn bans, fireworks) on a local level and… on it went.  There were folks talking from both sides of all the issues – civilized discourse, you might say, but I’m not sure we got anywhere.  Still, it was an interesting evening – sort of out-of-the-darkness-and-into-the-light. Literally.

Coming soon?

This morning I woke up thinking about Jeff Sessions and Marijuana and Prohibition and Elliott Ness and ICE and the Feds in general.  Imagine!  Way off here on the Left Coast in little old Pacific County!  If we go back to Candlelight Fridays, it’s likely to be more like the 1920s than the 1890s.  Not my idea of a fun trip in a Time Machine.  No sirree!  But, I don’t think there are any guarantees about power failures – in Oysterville or in the Other Washington. Yikes!

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