... if there were anybody else whom I knew as well. Unfortunately, I am confined to this theme by the narrowness of my experience. Moreover, I, on my side, require of every writer, first or last, a simple and sincere account of his own life, and not merely what he has heard of other men's lives; some such account as he would send to his kindred from a distant land; for if he has lived sincerely, it must have been in a distant land to me.

That's Thoreau killing them with an under-appreciated truth. It occurs to me that this blog has become something of a continuation of my memoir. I didn't expect this. But always I go back to that Fred Douglass quote--A man is worked on by what he works on. I labored at the book for some time, and it changed me. I can't go back.

And so it also occurs to me that newcomers to this blog, like a passerby entering a conversation midstream, may miss some things. In that vein, I highlight this, this and this, so that you may glimpse the precise nature of this distant land presently under your feet.

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