Write Again …He was a very wise man

Published 4:45 pm Wednesday, November 16, 2022


Friends, when the well runs dry – temporarily I hope -1 must reach back some years in order to meet my weekly commitment to our paper.

So, even though references to the time of year are out of “sync” let me share the following with you once again. I thank you in advance for your indulgence.


The weather will probably be milder when this column comes out. But the recent cold snap brought it to mind.

Men who have been in the service understand it. Especially those who had to live and try to function in it for days on end. Oh, how they know.

And then, a vast segment of those who live – or lived – in the blighted slum areas of our country have a debilitating, first-hand knowledge of it too.

Of what? The cold. Cold weather. The “enemy.” Not just a few hours of it, but a day after day, seemingly unceasing co-existence with the great misery-inflictor that is cold weather. Chilling, spirit-killing, cold weather.

For those who know, truly know, from experience, the torture of cold weather, there’s no question about the incorrectness of thinking that hell is a consuming, constant cauldron of fire.

Not so. Hell is a perpetual, unbearable, merciless Arctic. Cold.

So that’s why what Jinks said is so profound. He spent almost his entire lifetime in an unheatable shanty. The cold was simply, winter after winter, a part of his existence.

I was visiting with Jinks in his living room, in his attractively, though modestly furnished house. You see, Jinks lives in a low-rent, public housing complex.

He loves it. And he appreciates it.

I commented about how cold it was outside. Old Jinks just chuckled, rubbed his grizzled chin, and nodded in agreement. Then he said something very revealing.

“But I can have a fire anytime I wants to.” His shoulders shook with mirth.

You see, what Jinks meant was that, simply, he could regulate the thermostat in the room, and have almost instant warmth.

Then he said, “Cap’n, half of livin’ is keepin’ warm.”

Jinks knows. So do a lot of others. APROPOS – “When I was hungry, I wanted food. When I was thirsty, I wanted drink. When I was cold, I wanted to die.


– Louis Freeman NOTE – Thanks for indulging me this older column. The post-hand surgery recuperation continues. Slowly. Last week’s third Pacemaker installment is going well so far. The Golden Years!