Jon Kennedy
Jon Kennedy

Jon Kennedy's 'Postcards from
the Nanty Glo in My Mind'

A Prisoner of My Past

Sometimes an idea that wants to be written resists deliverance. Last Wednesday's, for example, "Ineffability," no masterpiece but at least a new (to me) idea, resisted by with-holding the word. I knew the word (ineffable) and that it was the only word that would do. That word had in it the seeds of a whole thought wanting expression, but I struggled for an hour or two, checking without results in thesaurus, dictionary, and the synapses of my own gray matter. And when I gave up, it came. There it was, on my lips, and at first I didn't even recognize it. Then—that's it! That's what I've been digging for.

This time is different. I have a title, a topic, but no essay wanting composing.

Tom Baker plays Donald
MacDonald in "Monarch of
the Glen."

One of the three PBS affiliates here in greater San Francisco carries the Scottish-BBC series, "The Monarch of the Glen," on Tuesday evenings. It's not as good as last year's "Two Hundred Acres of Sky," another Scottish-BBC series, but it's much more watchable than the commercial competition. And gets better with age, as good TV series always do. Last night's installment had the elder man of the clan, Donald MacDonald, saying, "I'm a prisoner of my past." To which the obligatory retort was, "we're all prisoners of our pasts." I'm not sure what it's not a great epiphany, but it resonates at least a little.

Maybe the Nanty Glo Home Page as a whole is a prisoner of our collective past. Whatever that means. If it means something to you, please send your ideas (click the signature below to get an email address).

Meanwhile, speaking of the past, when I was in Nanty Glo in October Bill Martin told me something interesting about the masthead atop this page. The postcard on the top left, with the little girl in the pink dress, had him stymied quite a while, he said, thinking it wasn't just right, until he realized what's wrong with it. It has been "flipped." To see the "right way of seeing it," click here. I don't know how or why it got flipped, though I must be the culprit who did it.

Another loose end. The recent focus on the Capitol Theater and my referring to the theater in Vintondale elicited a question by a Forum member who couldn't remember if Twin Rocks had ever had a theater. He couldn't remember seeing it. Twin Rocks did have a theater, though I don't remember it being open for business even in my earliest years. But it was still standing on my last visit and can't be missed on a drive through town on Route 271, which is called Station Road in town now. Driving into Twin Rocks from Nanty Glo, it's on the left just before the bridge at the heart of Twin Rocks, between the VFW and the bridge and the large building long known as Dugan's Hotel. Though it seemed vacant in October, a while back my old friend Clem Deffenbaugh had put a garage door in the front of it and it had served, I believe he said, as a motorcycle maintenance and repair shop.

Webmaster Jon Kennedy

latest additions
to the Nanty Glo Home Page

Paul Ceria: The Loss of Our Moral Compass

BVHS Class of 2000 list now online

'New' Library of Congress Nanty Glo photos from 1937

Today's chuckle

Things to ponder—

Do illiterate people get the full effect of Alphabet soup?

— Sent by Trudy Myers

Thought for today

Nothing takes the taste out of peanut butter quite like unrequited love.

— Charles M. Schulz (1922 - 2000), Charlie Brown in "Peanuts."

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