Sunday, July 5, 2009

Words of Advice for the Fourth of July

anvilIt is a well known fact that here in the North Georgia mountains we celebrate our country’s founding with the blasting of a blacksmith’s anvil into the air – the higher the better. I have witnessed many an anvil shoot and so give the following advice:

It is not wise to drink beer or any other alcoholic beverage when loading gunpowder into the base of the anvil. Drinking more than one pint of beer, certainly if followed by more than a glass of whiskey, weakens one’s judgement and makes it easy to miscalculate the amount of powder required to elevate this heavy implement. Celebrating our much-valued freedom with a toast or two is appropriate, but do not join your friends in individually toasting every signer of the Declaration of Independence. Such patriotism can cause you to think that filling just the hollow base of the anvil with black powder and lighting a fuse could not possibly provide enough power to lift a 100-pound cast iron weight. You may be tempted to make certain that an impressive height is reached -- and proper tribute is paid to our Founding Fathers -- by instead setting the anvil on a 100-pound keg of powder partially buried in the ground. Do not give in to this temptation. If you do, do not plan to return the anvil.

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