Local History Potluck begins this week

Published 11:43 am Monday, January 22, 2018

At 6:15 p.m. Thursday, the library’s Local History Potluck Dinner Program welcomes back a favorite son, noted farm tool collector, singer, songwriter, Red River Museum Magazine writer, farmers’ market farmer and merchant, traveler … and he still can find time to bend your ear — How does he do it? — Joe Barnes.

This is going to be a fun program, so if you want to rise above the low temperatures that plagued us, come listen to Joe. He will cheer you up, and amaze you.

When Joe brought in his program poster, I talked to him and he explained some of the pictured tools.

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“That one’s my favorite,” Joe said, pointing to a tin funnel.

“What is it?” I asked.

“It’s a black powder log splitter,” he said, grinning.

Joe explained the funnel is placed in a hole drilled into a large, hard log, filled with black powder and touched off with a fuse. Warning: Do not try this at home.


I thought he was kidding.

He wasn’t.

He recommended a Youtube demonstration video, and lo! There is such a thing as a black powder log splitter.

Here’s the address for the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F-xAuZX8lWM; it’s easier to just search the black powder log splitter.

The powder lighter even says “Hey, ya’ll watch this,” as he lights the fuse. I feared what or who was going to lose a limb.

Joe will bring a boatload of curiously-shaped and exotically-named tools.

His program will be a history of farm implements and it will reveal some of the historic language of our region. The names of these farm implements imply farmyard chatter was pretty colorful.

Bring a dish and join us for a program that will make you say, “What?”

It is free and open to the public. You may also come at 6:50 p.m. if you prefer not to enjoy the potluck, but let us know, either way, to ensure you have a seat. Call for a reservation at 744-5661 or register using Evanced on the library website, www.clarkbooks.org.

At noon Saturday, the library will host an open reading for local writers, storytellers and readers called Eating Poetry and Other Words, and you are invited to bring a piece of writing, 3-5 minutes long, to perform.

We had a session like this last October and it was a lot of fun. Library patron Adra Fischer read some great poems and city commissioner Rick Beach told a couple of contemporary tales that had everyone riveted with curiosity and glee. Very laid back. No critique. Just the fun of listening.

If you have any questions, call or email me john.clarkbooks@gmail.com; 859-744-5661, ext. 110.

There’s more:

— At 2 p.m. Wednesday, ] Kentucky Picture Show presents a 2017 film about a teenage boy who escapes unrest in Iran due to the hostage crisis of 1979 only to face more hostility in America. Determined to fit in, he joins the school’s floundering wrestling team. Rated-PG 13.

—At 7 p.m. Wednesday, Trivia and pizza at the Engine House. Don’t burn the roof of your mouth. Half-rhyme.

— From 10 a.m .to 4 p.m. Saturday, Outside the Lines Adult Coloring. If you think coloring is boring, take a look at the chromatic extravaganza’s the women of Outside the Lines create.

Here’s a tip. Enjoy well-written book reviews, author news and writing articles? Sign up for The Guardian’s Bookmarks newsletter. It covers authors from around the world.

Go to www.theguardian.com/books. Click on the “Bookmarks – sign up” link. Fill in your email address. You get a series of articles about once aw eek. Highly recommended. 

John Maruskin is director of adult services at the Clark County Public Library. He can be reached at john.clarkbooks@gmail.com.