Thursday, August 30, 2007

Them's fightin' words!

"Foul language only proves that you have no upbring."

It was understood that “woods talk” and “polite company talk” were two different things and to be used in two different situations. If you had said that in front of some of the loggers that I knew, that would have been an opportunity to fight, which they would have done so just as soon as look at you. Fighting wasn’t personal, it was sport. It was mandatory to fight over of something like that, they had to, to protect their self-image as a man. Have you ever heard the expression “Them's fightin’ words”? Fighting was usually done after work, it wasn’t honest to fight while you were “on the clock”. I told you, you can’t judge history by today’s standards. For a “man” to walk away from an expression like that would have been personally humiliating. You can talk all day about how right or wrong fighting is, but under those conditions, in those days it was the only option. Are you beginning to grasp the concept of what I say about “Not judging history by today’s standards?”

Newcomers only look at the surface of what we were and say; ”forget that, that was wrong”. But, to a man in the position of being insulted in front of his people, it was a different situation entirely. And, you better be ready to engage in a little healthy sportsmanship, and he wouldn't have killed you, he would have just kicked your ass until you learned better. But he would have been the first one to buy your beer afterwards, so you would know that there wasn't any hard feelings. Or if you kicked his butt you would buy the beer to show him that you were sorry. Got it?

So many people have heard these tales, and they seem like fantasy, but I was there. Please don't look at this as an insult! I don't like getting my ass kicked anymore, no matter how much fun it was "back then". But, if you didn’t want to get your butt kicked, all you had to do was not insult anyone, and you‘d get along just fine! Honor was important back then. Maybe we have lost something…….

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