Our attitudes. A big subject. Huge. But we can simplify it by talking about our ideas on use of time. Because ... and I lay this one on you to provoke thought ... our world view, our lifestyle is shaped and governed by our time management. Or lack thereof.

Think about it. We’re not deadline folks, folks.  

You’ll not find us stuck in traffic, banging on a steering wheel, and cursing because we’ll be late for ... whatever.

Of course, you won’t find us stuck in traffic because we don’t have any.  

We don’t bang on steering wheels when we’re frustrated, either. No. We pick up a gun, jump in the truck, and take off for the back country ... a la Earl Durand or the mountain men buried with honors in Trail Town. We do curse, of course, but not because we might be late or not get something done.  

In the aggregate, our flexible time management (or ‘old west’ management) means large projects and major issues tend to get pushed down the road ... and pushed ... and ....

This drove me nuts years back. I’d just returned home permanently, buying the family farm which needed new fencing and field shelters. My equine breeding stock arrived a month behind me.  

If you’ve ever mixed hot-blooded horses with barbed wire or seen them shaking in a cold wind, you’ll have some idea of the pressure on me to get these jobs done, definitely before winter.

“Don’t worry so,” my friends, family and fellow fencers said with smiles and suggestions of a day in the mountains.  

“Get used to it, Patty ... we’re mostly a day late and a dollar short here,” my mom advised. 

Others laughed and shrugged, “Take it easy. It’ll get done when it gets done ... or not.”  

Eventually, I downsized my expectations, realizing this was a pattern I’d adapted to during my years in what we now call “emerging economies.”

Us? An emerging economy? But doesn’t “emerging” take actually doing something?

This is where that slogan, “Wyoming is what America was,” comes into play. There’s a lot of truth there. Wyoming is what America was before starting to kick the world’s economic ass and take prisoners. Of course, that didn’t happen here. And thank God for it. Mostly. At least there’s someplace in the world a person can still escape to the mountains.  

But for how long? We’ve had that luxury because of rich severance taxes – you know, the taxes on minerals that replace our low to non-existent taxes. And the biggest of the extraction industries is going away.  

Something you’d never know if you visit with our legislators.  

Because they are us. Like us, they’d rather flee to the mountains or have special sessions galore to talk about non-issues or ... .   

But shouldn’t they care about giving us a prosperous future? No doubt. Still ... doing something about it? I suspect, like everything, it’ll get done when it gets done if it gets done.    

Think about it.

(1) comment

Tom Conners

It's more like " Wyoming was what America was", but then so was every other state. Wyoming's generational problem has always been people that refused to accept the fact that progress does and will happen and lack of willingness to keep up with that progress means living in the poor house. A fact that many of us went through for years before moving on to greener pastures. As the old saying in Alaska goes...lead..follow..or get the **** out of the way. Wyoming people need to decide this fate.

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