Thursday, May 26, 2011

Living The Big Sky Life: It Takes A Village

It’s always seemed to me that the movers and shakers who invest in keeping a community in motion are often cut from the same cloth, or to put it another way, dogs of the same breed…..regardless of where that community is located. Whitefish, Montana was certainly no exception, except of course, for a few exceptions.

While any community would naturally have a unique collective culture or personality of its own, one might rationally conclude that the personality belonging to the smaller community would tend to attract a special kind of resident; namely, someone who was predisposed to a cozier way of life, and who distinctly felt a level of comfort with the community’s particular culture.

The phrase “it takes a village” can take on a whole new meaning for many native small town residents when confronted about their socially intimate upbringing, especially since those doggies born and bred from within will historically fall into one of two very opposing camps.

First is the “contented canine” camp – these dogs smile pensively when they reminisce about home, hearth, and the village that raised them. Many who leave after high school yearn to return to that warm and fuzzy village when they’re ready to settle down and squeeze out a few puppies of their own.

Then there’s the diametrically opposed “caged dog” camp – these are the dogs who begin foaming at the mouth with an obsessive need to escape the minute they realize that they feel trapped like a dog at the pound. The very thought of returning to that suffocating village sends them into a hyperventilating chase-your-tailspin.

Native dwellers aside, I believe Whitefish had a similar polar aspect to its personality which caused it to attract a choice selection of notable newcomers who seemed to find their place within two categorical extremes as well.

The first extreme I call the “leaders of the pack” – these are the diplomat dogs who are skilled at aligning their personal agendas with the synergy of the community. These sly dogs are fast on their feet, and can usually be found throwing their power around in an attempt to influence local public policy and opinion in order to synchronize the community’s objectives with their highly prioritized personal objectives.

Some would call that making their mark. In Whitefish, it was usually more like marking their territory.

The opposite extreme can only be described as the “lone wolf pack” – these are the loners, the bad dogs with something to hide, and anyone else who’s decided -willingly or not- to fall off the grid.

When I think about those big dogs making their mark on Whitefish territory in 1995, the first thing that comes to mind is a kennel klatch of slobbering, snorting bulldogs – it is the town’s high school mascot after all.

The more memorable bulldogs I’ll be posting about next run the gamut, from contented canines to caged dogs, diplomat dogs to lone wolves. Some of them I either worked with or for, which wasn’t hard to do since I was a local business person and closed a large portion of the area's real estate transactions. Others I knew personally, or simply knew of because I lived there and it was unavoidable. And some were never really acknowledged or talked out loud about but everyone knew they were there, part of the backdrop, lurking.

Where was my place in all of this? It didn't take a local dog long to realize that this city bitch had no place to go but the “caged dog” camp, and I don’t even like camping.

Living The Big Sky LifeTM
© by DK King

1 comment:

  1. Great!!!!!!!!!! such amazing post you have shared. very fine way you have describe about the whitefish real estate. keep sharing it.

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