On Tuesday, the 20th of October, The Old Men of the Mountain met at the Alley Cat Restaurant in Schoharie, where the waitress (who wasn’t Pat) told us that when we called to say we would be there Pat decided to take the day off. That’s nice…

Another tid-bit of information that might not mean much but in the greater scope of things may be interesting. The word Schoharie was the word used by several Indian tribes meaning driftwood. The driftwood in the Schoharie creek would pile so high at Middleburgh that the Indians used it as a bridge. The Alley Cat Restaurant is just down from the Old Stone Fort in Schoharie, which really wasn’t a fort but a church. On one side of the “church” is a cemetery with a large marker for David Williams, a revolutionary soldier who captured the British spy Captain Andre. Those that read this column to the end will note the Old Men of the Mountain have our own David Williams in attendance. No relation.

Attached to small towns all over the state there are the same kind of stories that explain their names. The little town of Esperance means hope; it’s another little village along the Schoharie creek.

So far all these little towns do not have roundabouts, or traffic circles. The OF’s started talking about all these circles cropping up like some alien spaceship landing circle. According to an article in the Times Union the OF’s suspicions have been confirmed. The first suspicion is that the state just wanted to see if the could create a series of roundabouts so they could get people to play bumper cars like at the fair. The ones in the Town of Bethlehem are very confusing and unless they are driven every day strangers have no clue as to what is going on.

The other suspicion confirmed is that DOT is in cahoots with body repair shops. The paper reported that DOT said there are more accidents but less serious ones…What!!!…Some the OF’s that on occasion have to use these circles, say one of these days there is going to be one great big pileup, especially with trucks….we shall see. The body shops must love these things, no wonder our automotive insurance is going sky high, it is thinking like this, that we have “more accidents but not as serious”?? Does DOT know how much it costs just to repair a little ding in your vehicle? One OF said it is easier just to go and purchase another vehicle. By the time you make out the accident report, deal with the insurance company, find a body shop and deal with them, and they tell you, your dented bumper is going cost two thousand dollars to repair…oh, it’s just a little accident – it is not serious.

The OF’s discussed another scam, and that is the power bill and going green. We wonder if people know how much silver it takes to make a solar panel, or how much it takes to make a battery. These are materials that can never be replaced once used. Do people realize how dangerous the chemicals are in making batteries, or smelting silver? How about these so-called green light bulbs that are supposed to last a long time? Baloney, the OF’s that have these bulbs say the candle output is a lot less and the light seems to hurt the eyes, and many do not last more than a few months. Some OF’s have replaced perfectly good older appliances because their power bill is supposed to go down. One OG replaced his refrigerator (and these things are dear, better have money in the bank when going out to purchase one of these electric ice boxes) and a new hot water tank, and his bill WENT UP!! One OG said there is something wrong with this picture. Another OG said that we used to try and do most of what they are now telling us what to do, and the best advice from the OMOTM is don’t do it. Follow the money, and see how much money corporations are making and what politicians are behind them. If what you have is working fine hang on do it. The new things, which cost more, are shorter lived, and do not work as well. The OF’s say the new buzz words are green, and carbon footprint, and our buzz word for these buzz words is hooey.

When the OF’s were young (here comes Grandpa’s lecture) the OF’s parents did not run to the grocery store every day, actually our parents grew our vegetables, and then canned them, for the most part, and we had pantries. Today the OF’s still have pantries, and most shop once a month or once every two weeks and purchase enough to last awhile. Milk and orange juice freeze, and so does bread, it is not necessary to trot to the store and get this stuff everyday.

The OF’s burned wood, a renewable resource. The OF’s keep their homes at 68 degrees, and lower. Most OF’s keep a window open year round. Now they want us to button up our homes so tight we breathe stale air. Phooey! Let the fresh air in, for crying out loud, let the house breathe. The OF’s took a bath once a week and that is all we needed, except during haying season then most of the time the OF’s would go to the creek or pond and swim to get the chaff off. The OF’s are tired of being told we are doing it wrong. We are again and still OF’s and most have developed many natural immunities because we ate dirt, and drank raw milk so germs are afraid of us. Let the cows pasture’s be by the creeks. What happens by nature is much better for you than trying to make things so sterile any loose germ has a hay day when they light on the sterile ones because they have not built up any natural immunities. When that same germ lands on one of us OF’s it has a fight on its hands and will probably lose because the OF’s just turn their natural immunities on it and it is toast. Your medical lesson for today from the conversations of the OF’s.

Those attending the breakfast at the Alley Cat Restaurant in Schoharie, and in a social complaining mood were: Ted Pelkey, Walt Hill, Paul Paulsen, Robie Osterman, Carl Walls, Miner Stevens, Carl Slater, Frank Pauli, Harold Guest, Roger Chapman, Arnold Geraldsen, Gary Porter, Mace Porter, Jim Watson, Ted Willsey, Jim Rissacher, Harold Grippen, Willard Osterhout, Charlie Keller, and me.