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Into the mind of a boy

July 13, 2010

The other night, we were watching a show on PBS about moonshine stills – featuring moonshiner Popcorn Sutton.  (That’s one awesome thing about living in WV.  We can cover science and Appalachian history at the same time.)  At first the kids just weren’t all that impressed.  Then two things happened that highlighted how we all have our role in this world (or at least those in our family do).

First, they got into “how” a still works.  For my oldest boy, they were talking his language.  He loves to know how to build things.  The more um…construction that is involved, the more fascinated he becomes.  Now, I don’t know how much you know about a moonshine still, but it can be a very complicated thing.  Every new piece they described as they put it together, he had ten new questions for me.  This drawing gives you the basics…

…I could see the boy’s wheels were cranking.  He particularly lit up when they started talking about the soldering iron and I know he was thinking about his Christmas list.

The younger boy, was busy trying to sneak his dinosaurs back into the room.  He paused a few times to watch as the “architect” added more wood to his barrel (i.e. furnace) and talked about how hot the fire had to be.  What really caught his attention though was when they interviewed a gentleman who explained how they used to demolish the stills.  He commented that the best way to capture the demolition on film wasn’t to take the picture right as the dynamite went off…but to count to three and then snap the picture.  That was the most effective way to really get the full effect – after the dust had settled just a bit and you could really see the wood, and copper, and rock blasting through the top of the trees.  Yeah…THAT is when my sweet boy’s face lit up.

He then proceeded to look at his brother, with a wild look in his eyes and say…

“You build it, I’ll blow it up!!!!” {pause} “and mommy can take pictures!!”

Yes, indeed.  We all have our place.

One Comment leave one →
  1. July 14, 2010 5:42 am


    I love that boy!

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