Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Once again, reading the newspaper revealed a unique opportunity in my community. The Sunday paper talked about a film that was being shown at a theatre known for its’ art presentations in Portland, Oregon for one viewing only.

I knew it would be a special movie and immediately put it on my calendar for the following day. At the appointed time, I put the address into my GPS and headed to a district of Portland that I had never visited—Clinton Street.

Arriving early, I parked the car and walked the area…fascinating. Looks like an excellent place for me to put on my schedule to have breakfast sometime in the near future…quaint, little specialty places.

Walked into the Clinton Street Theatre http://www.clintonsttheater.com bought my ticket, a box of popcorn with real butter and my customary Dr. Pepper. This is always my splurge when I go to a movie. Not good for me, but hey, I do it so infrequently.

The film began with an introductory by Michael Johnathon, a Folksinger, who explained that he had written the play to make sure that new generations understand the impact of Thoreau’s work so many years ago.

During the next hour, the play (on film) revealed aspects of Thoreau’s life the last two days of his stay in the cabin alone at Walden’s Pond. Thoreau stayed at the cabin alone for two years,two months and two days.

Ralph Waldo Emerson had given Thoreau the land to build his cabin and would stop in to check on Thoreau during the course of the two years. Emerson at first gave him a bad time because he was talking to his peas…then picked up one of the journals and realized there were many good thoughts written down.

Emerson warned Thoreau that there would be people that would not understand his writings, yet, Emerson knew there was great value in the findings.

After Thoreau’s death fourteen years later, it was Emerson who made sure the journals where published. Thoreau never experienced success during his lifetime.

At the end of the film, Michael Johnathon talks about how Thoreau saw the need to take care of our land and suggests that we don’t worry about saving the world. Just as Thoreau said, “Take care of what is around you”. Michael suggested that we “Pick up the bottles, go for a walk in nature, and appreciate what we have near you”.
I may not have a Walden Pond in my backyard, but I have wonderful pond out my window. Just because it isn’t Walden Pond, it doesn’t make it any less important……time to cherish and appreciate the world that is right in our backyard.

You can see an excerpt of it here: http://youtu.be/-2jukNXO37o

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