Along with the goat head, other baffling bones emerged from the aperture in the floor.
At the time (July and August, 2016) that we discovered them, the bones seemed to be absurd impediments to our room remodel. (If you’ve read the early posts of this blog, you’ll know that our challenges with this house included the problem of trying to determine the source of its dreadful odor.)
Here are some wild boar jaws:
It seemed important to remove the old bones, because they were odorous (or, at least, the organic matter surrounding them was odorous).
Here is a more detailed view of some wild boar jaws:
When I first came across one of these, I was taken aback and shaken. What was this thing with the molars? How horrifying. Was it some kind of long extinct sea creature?
I held it up for our carpenter to see and he casually remarked that it looked like a wild bar jaw.
It does appear that he was correct.
Here’s another view of wild boar teeth and tusks…
Rant Du Jour
Like most creatures on this planet, human beings are typically born with a sense of vision.
Vision is typically affected by one’s perspective.
The restoration work we’ve done in our house has awakened my vision to perspectives I’d never before imagined. Perplexing perspectives.
When we first began to restore the building, I’d wondered if we’d ever come across an artifact.
My initial response to finding an artifact was like, “OMG! An artifact!”
But over time I’d find more and more of them, tossing them aside, thinking, “Oh, another artifact.”
Still, we’ve kept all the artifacts we’ve found. (I’ll discuss this in greater detail later.)
One unanticipated perplexing perspective has been the overall lack of interest in our artifact discoveries by those who would seem to want to know about them.
Here’s what I’m trying to say: we’ve made remarkable discoveries. But these do not seem to matter.
And the most remarkable discovery is the realization of the real and present danger affecting our home. And our street. And that doesn’t seem to matter either.
If you’re new to this blog, here’s a recap redux: Ipswich, Massachusetts has the largest number of first period (earliest) homes in the United States (my home is a first period home), but in one part of town (where my home is located, which I’d assert is the oldest part of town) these houses are at great risk (from seriously heavy truck traffic and seriously heavy truck vibrations, high speed limits, and a lack of stop signs or any other kind of traffic calming strategies).
I’ve reached out to the town Select Board and to the Historical Commission about this issue.
It would seem to me that a historically significant home deserves to be protected but that is not happening. (And yes, of course, every home deserves to be protected.)
And as I noted in my memo to the Select Board in February, the children walking along this street, to and from school, are also at risk. Why isn’t anyone doing anything about this?
I’ve also written to our state representative, asking for help. No response.
The most consistent response I’ve gotten is no response. (Or dismissive responses, which are not helpful.)
In 2017, Richard Clarke (the former U.S. National Coordinator for Security, Infrastructure Protection, and Counter-terrorism) wrote a brilliant article about Cassandra, the princess of Troy who correctly foresaw the outcome of the Trojan War. Cassandra was a visionary, and like many visionaries, her warnings were dismissed. It appears that many people cannot see looming problems, or they choose not to see them, and these problems are dismissed until catastrophe strikes.
Like Cassandra, I’m trying to avert disaster. I’m trying to protect my home, along with everyone who lives or travels on my street.
My perspective on the looming High Street / Route 1A /Route 133 disaster is absolutely clear.
I live here.
My front door is about 12 feet from the street. I’m witness to close calls every day, to brakes squealing, and to horns blaring. It is not possible for me not to hear (and to feel) huge trucks whizzing by in the middle of the night (shaking and jolting my house). I’m not able to ignore the reality that at any moment all could be lost. But when I’ve tried to alert the authorities in town about this, their lack of response might suggest that they think I’ve got a problem. They haven’t quite realized (yet) that my problem is their problem. We share this problem. I’m truly hoping not to say, “I told you so,” but the clock is ticking.
Eventually Cassandra went mad. And Troy did fall.
The point of Clarke’s article is that prognosticators who are close to volatile situations and who issue warnings of impending disaster should be heard. It is unwise to ignore their warnings.
We do not need to keep reliving the Greek tragedies.
We must not tempt the Fates.