All posts by Michael Patrick McCarty

Michael Patrick McCarty earned a B.S. Degree in Wildlife Biology from Colorado State University. He has worked in a variety of capacities relating to fisheries and wildlife biology, water and environmental quality, and outdoor recreation. A lifelong shooter, bowhunter and outdoorsman, he has hunted and fished throughout North America. A used and rare book dealer for more than 25 years, he offers a catalog of fine titles in the fields of natural history, angling, the shooting sports, farming, and agriculture. “I have a passion for old books, slow food, pigeons, the pursuit of bugling elk, fish and game cookery, heritage poultry breeds, personal freedom, and the Rocky Mountains, to name just a few, and not necessarily in that order. I consider the White River National Forest of Western Colorado as part of my backyard”. Mike writes about an assortment of outdoor and food related topics. “I am particularly interested in the nexus between the desire to provide one’s own food, and the withering array of local, state, and federal laws and regulations which often stand in the way. It is the manner in which they all relate to the cornerstone issues of personal freedom and liberty that concerns me. For me, it’s where the rubber meets the road”.

Sometimes Your Backyard is an Ocean

It may be a while before we can get there, but we have some friends who like to spoil us with some of their Whidbey Island fare whenever they visit. Any warm-blooded foodie would be so lucky as to have some friends like these.

Today I met Michael and Carol in the parking lot of a convenience store near our home in western Colorado, as they interrupted their business trip to make sure that we received our periodic fix. We conducted our business from the trunk of their small car at the side of the building, and I have no doubt that we looked like animated drug dealers divvying up their illicit and valuable spoils.

What exactly were we hovering over? Well, I thought you’d never ask. Why, oysters (from this supplier), of course.

And not just any oysters, I might add. These were Michael and Carol’s home-farmed oysters, plucked from the fertile and friendly waters just outside their beachfront property. They are old, outrageously large, and a wonder of the pacific world.

That was not all of the goodies hiding in the trunk either. They also grow two kinds of mussels, and collect a third kind right off the beach. There were local clams too, which I love. Then came some bags of freshly caught Dungeness Crab, plucked from a trap not far from their house. Somebody pinch me!

A transplanted Jersey guy could barely be more thrilled, since seafood like that can be mighty scarce in the high rocky mountains. Let the shellfish feast begin!

It reminds me that there are many kinds of food growing in people’s backyards, even the salty kind. Nature’s bounty is everywhere, ready and willing to be appreciated by the sharp-eyed forager. The rewards are incredibly diverse, and absolutely grand. And sometimes your backyard is an ocean, full of wonderful treats.

I thank Michael and Carol for reminding us of that.

“The Only Change You Can Believe In”

For anything significant to change, people must stop playing “follow the leader.” But, if people stop following the leader, then who will lead them? The answer: No one! You must lead yourself.

But self-leadership cannot be bought, given, or imposed. It has to come from within. It begins with expecting nothing from your “leaders” and understanding that everything has to come from you. It means having the courage not to cower to power. The dignity to claim your rightful and sacred place on earth. To respect yourself, demand it of others and show respect to all who merit it … regardless of class or status. The integrity to keep and live by your word. And the passion to live a life of meaning and conviction; for your heart to feel what your mind knows.

This is not an “every man for himself,” manifesto. Rather it is a call for a cooperative of individuals with the courage, dignity, respect, integrity and passion to chart a future that is not dictated and imposed upon them by ruling political parties and the unprincipled and oppressive systems they represent.

There is no “We the People” until “I the Person” is willing to stand up and speak for himself or herself.

For the future to change, the individual must change. When enough individuals change, everything changes.

From Trends Journal, August 2012, by Gerald Celente