This is in response to a comment made by an observer several years ago:
Here are just a few thoughts from a horselogger about this notion of Cultural Oddity from a sustainable development perspective.
The idea that someone can restore the forests of Appalachia to a better condition than they were before extracting for human needs is a “Cultural Oddity”, this is what we do.
The idea that any organization can develop a living wage job that is beneficial, sustainable or actually improving to the environment, watershed and society is a “Cultural Oddity”.
The fact that the only growing segment of our agricultural society is the Amish is a “Cultural Oddity”.
The approach of improving our society one person at a time is a “cultural oddity”.
If we keep doing what we are already doing we will keep getting what we got. Current conventional cultural practices are not sustainable. An “odd culture” would be anything different from what is already happening.
We believe what we are doing and proposing to do in the future is completely in agreement with green forestry and environmental organizations mission statements. The means of accomplishing this mission should not be judged “odd” and dismissed for it’s unusual form.
Random House Dictionary of the English Language, Second Edition, unabridged:
Odd (od), adj., -er,est,n.-adj. 1. Differing in nature from what is ordinary, usual, or expected: an odd choice.
Oddity (od’I te), n., pl. –ites for 1, 3. 1. An odd or remarkably unusual person, thing, or event.
There are over 50 people in the region that are practicing animal powered extraction to one degree or another. This practice is growing in popularity amongst landowners and forest workers.
Here is what is not odd about this work.
More people are fed on this planet with animal power than diesel or fossil fuel, mostly bovine in Asia and the third world.
Animal powered systems are superior, in many ways, firstly giving independence and interdependence to the operator.
They operate on solar fuel, (hay and grain)
They replace themselves (baby horses)
They are self-repairing (time off for recuperation)
They are less compacting on the soil
They reduce carbon monoxide emissions, lessening global warming
We are used to not being understood as modern horseloggers. But being dismissed or tabled out of ignorance is unacceptable.