The Apostle Brian's First Epistle to the Valle Crucians

Welcome Brothers and Sisters to the evening service.

Tonight we are using as a text a newly discovered archeological find, a letter yes.

Brethren - a letter, from the sacred and recently unearthed Live Mountain Scrolls. Tonight we will read The First Epistle of the Apostle Brian to the Valle Crucians.

As you know the Apostle Brian lived among us for many years, and guided our efforts in the cult of the great pipe. Then, he forsook us to carry on his missions, and emissions, across the sea in far-flung corners of the globe.

On his return to his beloved mountain and its people, he saw that evil had crept in and corrupted the once pure faith. His people no longer adhered to the time-honored ways of their fore-fathers, but had succumbed to the seduction of the modern, of the innovative, of the technological.

This then is his letter to his flock, upbraiding us and instructing us, so that we may regress back to enlightenment.

I read from the epistle.

"Brethren, since my absence, many of you have strayed from the truth; abased yourselves for convenience; and flirted with the new and the fan-dangled.

On the subject of truth, first let it be said that the hemping of pipes is of the first order of importance, and that the waxed hemp - self-waxed not pre-waxed - is the true way. Leave aside your pre-waxed hemp and take in hand the cobbler's wax and the bees wax that a thorough and lasting imprint of hemp can be made upon your drones.

And in so doing, cast out the evil tone enhancer, the invidious destroyer of tone. Let your strike-ins and your cut-offs be natural, as God intended. Fail in their production if you must, but use not the short-cut of technology to enhance the quality of your craft.

Secondly, I speak to those who have flirted with the synthetic. Take up again the hide, the sheepskin, and the reed of cane. Let tradition be your guide not convenience, not consistency of quality. Immerse yourselves again in the morass of natural materials that you may flounder through, with much effort, to the promised land of a true sound. Take not the easy road, for it is the road to perdition. Use not these devil's devices, for they will surely lead you to mediocrity and sorrow.

Thirdly, let me speak to those who have been seduced by the higher pitch. If God had intended you to play at 480 Cycles per Second, you would have been born into the cult of the piccolo, not the cult of the great pipe. Rather, eschew the Modern Chanter and the Reed of Stubby Blade, and return to the pitch of the Saintful Bobs of Balmoral whose truth and pitch is eternal. Let me hear no more pipes that squeak and gurn at a pitch that only a dog can hear, but rather let me again hear the pipe whose sound is like the deepest moan from the bottom of a well. Embrace flatness as a creed and curse forever the brightness of the modern sound.

Now my flock, let us repair the grove of the sacred Blackwood trees in the Carolina Mountains. Let us carry our sacks of reed cane, our cans of bag seasoning and our trays of many waxes. There, let us rejoice with the sacred psalm of our creed:

"Yea, though I walk in the band neath the darkness of drummers, I will fear no evil,
for my bag of hide, reeds of cane shall comfort me.
Thou gavest me hemp, and I sinned with Nylon.
Thou gavest me Hide, and I sinned with Gortex.
Though gavest me Cane, and I sinned with Plastic.
I shall cast into darkness these abominations; spurn them with devoutness and
surely richness of tone shall follow me all the days of my life."

Thus endeth Brian's first epistle to the Valle Crucians.

Ed Neigh - June 2009 - Second Week Ceilidh

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