Cooperstown Crier - Your Source for Hometown News - Cooperstown, Baseball Hall of Fame

Hawthorn Hill

December 6, 2012

Of bikes, fishing rods and philosophy


I wish I could recoup the bucks I spent a month or so ago on having the bike tuned up. I may just stick it under the tree come Christmas with this note: Free! Philosophically speaking, it is blessed to give and share one’s bounty. The money would have been better spent on a new pair of hiking shoes.

And then there is the never used LL Bean fishing rod, resting comfortably in its red carrying case, hanging off the end of a shelf in the garage, which is where it has been since the day it arrived. In his book, A River Runs Through it, Norman McClain writes that in his family fishing was more than a pleasant recreational activity, it was a religion. I loved the book and the movie. I have red several fishing classics and loved them all. The writing is often excellent. For many anglers it is indeed a very spiritual experience. Perhaps that is the attraction. Despite the allure, I have never quite been able to get myself to do it. Besides, a man cannot spread himself too thin. I hike, bird, write, read, garden, and mess around with botanical and horticultural interests. Add in family and the necessity for solitude. These are the soul nourishing things I do.

Sandy has a Rube Goldberg vision every once in a while. She sees me on my bike, fishing rod in hand, heading down the hill towards Red Creek. Oh, and I might just be flipping through the pages of my second book while whizzing down Fish Road. I suspect the only part of this image that might come true is the book. We’ll see.

Text Only
Hawthorn Hill
  • A farewell essay More years ago than I care to contemplate, I very sheepishly sent a column in fully expecting it would be rejected. Lo and behold, it appeared shortly thereafter and for almost twenty years now I have have written these bi-weekly columns, first under the heading of "The Timely Writer" for The Freemans Journal and, for the last several years as "Up on Hawthorn Hill" with the Cooperstown Crier.

    July 17, 2014

  • Writing in the age of ad hominisms This past week several readers of these columns have asked about my absence of late. The honest answer is that there are times when the well runs a bit dry and one’s enthusiasm for forcing words on to the page wanes.

    June 26, 2014

  • Robinson novels show grace, intelligence I have been reading the novels of Marilynne Robinson the past several weeks. She writes with such grace and intelligence that I find myself rereading sections several times over to savor their exquisite taste and, in some instances, to make sure I have grasped the meaning of what she has written.

    May 1, 2014

  • Giving aid to Cornell at my window For quite a few years now I have participated in Cornell's Project Feeder Watch.

    April 10, 2014

  • Birder admits he confuses non-birding world I often run into people who ask me what it is about watching and studying birds that birders like me find so appealing.

    March 20, 2014

  • Olympics spirit in need of repair It is time to rethink what the Olympics ought to be about.

    February 27, 2014

  • Late night drive stirs morning man It has been a long time since my last stint at the wheel in the wee hours of the morning. Several days ago the phone rang at 1 a.m. Never a good sign. Within minutes I was in the car heading for Boston. The sun and I got there at about the same time. Fortunately, the late night emergency that required the trip has resolved itself, all is well, and I was able to head back home the following day.

    February 13, 2014

  • Shopping is never fun, simple I am not a shopper. Quick ins and outs are what appeal to me. The sooner the ordeal is over the better.

    January 16, 2014

  • Wondering if Holidays are worth the stress

    January 2, 2014

  • Laziness must be overcome An essayist in a weekly magazine, somewhat tongue-in-cheek, characterizes the past year as exhibiting an uncommon penchant for laziness.

    December 19, 2013