Thursday, July 04, 2013

Vobis Non Me Dux

When I was a child, after the sun went down on the fourth day of the month of July, the night sky around me was filled with the rattle of firecrackers and the whoooooshCRACK! of bottle rockets, and the horizon around me sparkled and blossomed with the sights and sounds of people turning money into colorful noise to celebrate the day, much like it will tonight.

What made it all so much more Independence Day back then was that all of those people had had to drive to neighboring states to buy those fireworks, and each skyrocket was a glorious, glimmering, 'splodey middle finger to the nannies and busybodies who live to tell other people what to do.

For at least one night a year, Mr. & Mrs. Buttoned-Down suburbanite were willing to get their wookie on and stand out in front of their house and break the law right in front of God and everybody; to write "Come And Get Me, Copper!" in flaming letters across the sky. It was the most glorious thing I've ever seen.

Happy You're Not The Boss Of Me Day, everybody!


Anonymous said...

There was a mythical place called South of the Border that sold all types of fireworks to us poor Northern boys heading back home from family visits in the south.

My button down dad would pull in and bootleg bottle rockets, firecrackers and Roman candles back to his coworkers and neighbors in Pennsylvania.

Happy 4th to you all!


Robert Fowler said...

We had that problem when I was a kid in Michigan. Fireworks were verboten. The high point of the summer was the 2 weeks we went to SE Missouri to visit grandpa. Fireworks were legal, a 7 year old's dream.

rremington said...

Excellent post Tam.

Happy YNTBOM Day!

Anonymous said...

I'm in So MO right now, and have been hearing fireworks (mostly little bottle rocket types, but some big booms and whistle-crackle types too) going non-stop since Monday morning but it won't be until after dusk that I'll actually SEE one.

July 5 = clean up rocket debris from the yard day. I think this year will set a record for volume.


Robert said...

Here in NC we get glorified sparklers. Nothing that explodes or leaves the ground is allowed. It's short trip to SC if you want those.

I don't buy fireworks anymore though, as they are all made in china.

Tam said...

"Here in NC we get glorified sparklers. Nothing that explodes or leaves the ground is allowed. ...

I don't buy fireworks anymore though

How convenient for you, then! :) Happy Independence Day!

Anonymous said...

Though not, I'm guessing, on this particular July 4th, for our friend and alter ego TJIC.

How wretchedly ironic and sad.

Anonymous said...

That was in reference to this, of course:

"...stand out in front of their house and break the law right in front of God and everybody; to write "Come And Get Me, Copper!""

Anonymous said...

Several years ago. Friend has a former profesional fireworks friend set up the spread. Nice party As Darkness falls. neighbor down the street begin a duel. We responded. Police shows up and over the PA "enough." As he says that the neighbors have a "mad minute." The Po-Po take off. Obviously owned. The next five insane minutes coated all of us in soot! Needed to shower When We Got home. Shows now pale in comparison. Let freedom ring!!!! God bless America!!!

Justthisguy said...

Ah, yes, last night was magnificent. A lot of my neighbors completely ignored the silly FL law and set off some good stuff. They had rockets, and mortars.f

Justthisguy said...

P.s. Being a boy-type person, I thought about tipping over those mortars to an angle which would cause the payload to go off at about ground level.

Fortunately for all concerned, I was too poor to buy fireworks and actually try the experiment.

mikee said...

Here north of Austin, Texas, we experience the same outpouring of civil disobedience almost every year from our suburban neighbors' back yards, despite the annual notices forbidding personal fireworks.

As a demonstration of civic responsibility, I note that the "almost every year" (above) means that some years, there is a voluntary self-restriction on private fireworks usage. This is due to weather. When we have really dry weather, and the likelihood of grass fires is high, the volume of fireworks is almost zero compared to any year where it rained within a week or so of the 4th.

This was a dry 4th, and the backyards of our neighbors were notably silent. However, the park where the fireworks were shot off by the city was packed to twice that of last year, as were the roadsides & medians of the surrounding streets.

Amazing, isn't it, that even civil disobedient citizens have enough sense not to burn down their own neighborhoods.

wcchavez said...

There were middle fingers up and down the valley last night. Even saw state cops driving the road! They must have been enjoying not enforcing the NM state-wide nothing-flaming-that-goes-up ban. God lights fires in the dry forests and because of that we can't have fun where it has been raining for a week and the distance between knee-high plants is measured in paces. Fun was had.

Jennifer said...

Yes! That exactly! Sure the city puts on a nice show, but I love seeing the giant spray of color right over my house after the official show is done.

Justthisguy said...

Mikee, just the opposite problem here. It has been raining so hard here lately,
and the ground is so saturated, that some of the toilets have a problem getting the poo into the septic tanks. Fortunately, the neighbors were able to keep their powder dry.

We have had more rain here lately than we've had from some tropical storms with names.

Robert said...

"How convenient for you, then! :) Happy Independence Day!"

I been spending what little extra money I have on ammo.

Not that I woulda been able to set off anything here last night anyways. Nobody was. It was pouring rain so much you wouldn't have been able to get a fuse lit, much less see the result if it managed to get off the ground.

Anonymous said...

Anything that went "BANG" or left the ground was always illegal when I was a kid in Washington state.

Where were the best illegal fireworks displays in our neighborhood? Why, at the Sheriff's house down the street, of course! Now there was a man that didn't like stupid laws. I imagine that he and LawDog would have gotten along great.


zdogk9 said...

You didn't just head to the rez to stock up like about 98% of my neighbors?