Reflections on the world's oldest sport
<B>Reflections on the world's oldest sport</B>When Walt Harrington first took to the woods with his father-in-law to hunt rabbits, it wasn't by choice. A <I>Washington Post</I> reporter at the time, Harrington was a city slicker with a taste for expensive wines, tailored suits and original art. Tramping through frosty fields at dawn in blood-stained overalls was not his idea of a good time, but he felt duty-bound to try out his new shotgun, a gift from his wife's father.
Harrington viewed hunting as an archaic pastime, if not downright barbaric. Why hunt animals, he thought, when hunting is no longer necessary for survival?In his new book, <B>The Everlasting Stream: A True Story of Rabbits, Guns, Friendship, and Family</B>, Harrington tackles this question and others in an attempt to make sense of the age-old activity and life in general. He succeeds in writing a graceful, introspective memoir that takes a candid look at the ritual of modern-day hunting and the moral minefields that surround it. With well-researched points about hunting woven through stories of his childhood and career, Harrington debates the morality of killing animals for sport. For more than a decade, Harrington has spent every Thanksgiving holiday in the fields of rural Kentucky with his father-in-law's tight-knit group of hunting buddies blue-collar African-American men who grew up dirt poor. In time, the award-winning white journalist finds that he has a lot to learn from these rough-edged men, some of whom have been hunting together for half a century. With a straightforward style and a practiced eye for detail, Harrington describes how hunting evolves into a life-affirming activity for him a way to experience nature, companionship and heightened acuity." <B>Everlasting Stream</B> is sure to give even the most devout anti-hunting advocates and workaholics some compelling ideas to ponder. Part memoir, part essay, the book is more than a treatise on hunting. It's a moving tribute to four unassuming men and a stirring commentary on life. <I>Rebecca Denton is a copy editor and freelance writer in Nashville.</I>