Mountain Musings


A Simple Song of Freedom


If you had read last week’s edition of this newspaper – and I trust you, as a loyal reader did – you would, no doubt, have seen and hopefully read the article about Crestline being proclaimed a City of Peace.


Seems rather ironic to me, what with Russia’s massive invasion of Ukraine. Yes, these are trying times we are living in.


Come and sing a simple song of freedom, sing it like you’ve never sung before. Let it fill the air, tell the people everywhere we, the people here, don’t want a war. (“A Simple Song of Freedom” – Bobby Darin – 1969)


As a point of reference, Bobby Darin, best known for recording “Splish Splash” and “Mack the Knife,” performed this song at the height of the Vietnam War on the Smothers Brothers TV show. The song, penned by Darin, was first recorded by folk musician Tim Hardin, who reached Number 50 on Billboard Magazine’s Top 100 chart. Darin’s version never charted, possibly due to public backlash and controversy that kept the song from airing on many radio stations. However, he did hit Number 1 with “Mack the Knife,” Number 2 with “Dream Lover” and Number 3 with “Splish Splash.”


Watching hundreds of Russian soldiers descending on cables from helicopters as they invaded another Ukrainian city on the nightly news the other night reminded me of the 1984 film Red Dawn, where thousands of Russians descended upon U.S. soil. If World War III really does break out, it’s likely that the only thing descending from above will be thermonuclear weapons. As Albert Einstein once said, World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones.


It’s unlikely that we the people here in the City of Peace and elsewhere on the mountain would be a target of a Russian, Chinese or North Korean nuclear-tipped missile. L.A. and San Diego would be more likely to be targeted, although we do have an Air Force reserve base about 50 miles away, south of Moreno Valley. You might want to consider installing a bomb shelter on your property like my uncle in Santa Paula did during the 1962 Cuban Missile Crises. It beats digging a grave.


So, what can we, the people here in Crestline, “The City of Peace,” do to prevent this from happening? I’m not sure, but it might help to say a little prayer, and maybe, just maybe, “The Prince of Peace” will hear you and respond accordingly.


No doubt some folks enjoy doin’ battle, like presidents, prime ministers and kings, so let’s build them shelves so they can fight among themselves and leave us be those who want to sing.


Keep it flyin’, Uncle Mott