Saturday, December 19, 2015

Institute for Advanced Study Bulldozes part of Princeton Battlefield

The Institute for Advanced Study has begun to bulldoze six acres they own of the approximately 21-acre tract including Princeton Battlefield State Park. The Institute intends to build housing on hallowed ground where men fought and died for the founding of the American nation. I've followed this development for a few years; not closely, because I gave up on the news mentality at age 18, at least that mainline sensation of urgent importance I used to vitally feel. My brother-in-law used to be extremely involved in historic preservation in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, and he fought the Institute hard and dearly to keep the integrity of this land intact. Since he was up against one of the most famous architects in the country on the other side, Hillyer I believe is the name, he knew they have a lot of power for the nonce.

In the broader view of events, the Institute I felt proud of living near while growing up seems to value six acres of housing an awful lot, as if any question about its image locally, nationally and globally is less important. Albert Einstein had an office at the Institute, as great minds do today, but whatever the outcome--with bulldozers already at work--we all know that if the Revolutionary War hadn't happened, including the decisive victory here, the unleashing of human productivity as never before in history, which has been America, wouldn't have either.

Einstein hoped for international government, an idea foreign to most of us, and I wonder how he appreciated the Battlefield. Great minds come from many countries to Princeton, Orville and Wilbur Wright having made the convenience of their travels possible at Kill Devil Hills, North Carolina.

I know Einstein loved Stony Brook nearby, because I came upon a written passage of his own that expressed the amazement he felt just walking about it's edges to turn over stones or what have you and encounter whatever he found. Especially the awakening of ideas that nature stimulates. 
My brother-in-law used to be involved in Revolutionary War reenactments. Shot's blurry, just like the thundering cannon at Princeton Battlefield seemed to shake the air. He and my sister-in-law cleared out of the area for Maine, leaving behind the Corporate World they came to find no longer tenable.

Monday, December 14, 2015

Like October in December on Lake Hopatcong

Dow's Boat Rentals boats remain available, and Laurie, Joe and Jimmy plan on continuing to rent them out so long as the weather holds. Of course we're hoping for ice, and it's a very rare winter when none makes this lake something else. But for now, it's a most unusually extended fall, with temperatures in the 50's, 60's and 70's, lots of walleye, hybrid stripers, perch and some muskies getting caught of recent.
It's all about the vertical jigging now; Laurie's recent report only mentions fatheads for perch in the bait department, not that herring wouldn't work. An eight-pound, four-ounce walleye got weighed in, along with a number of others up to six pounds. A 47-inch musky got caught on a little Rapala Ice Jig fished vertically as well.
It sounds like October in December, and I wanted dearly to get out on the lake two weeks ago, but not by myself in one of the rentals. My friend Mike never bought a fishing license this year, and since the season's about over, he wants to wait and fish the lake with me sometime next year.