I swiped the next two images of the F-22 Raptor planes of war from the net. Photographers unidentified.
Before noon on Sunday I drove out to Botzie's house to deliver a load of British Thermal Units in the form of seasoned oak that I had cached out in the way back from the end of last season's stores. Jeff lives down a dirt track road in an old white farm house that was built in 1910 roughly 28 miles east of here. His place is surrounded by agricultural fields and cows roaming on rolling pastures that are lined with trees. He dwells alone, self supported in a place of dense quiet solitude where he can concentrate on his photographic real art project in the home that has become his studio.
After chatting about the project for a bit we went out front and unloaded the wood in the belly of the Montero onto his classic covered farm house porch. While we worked I noticed the occasional movement of a frog or turtle in the bright green algae covered pond just below the sloping golden grassy hill in front of us. The light breeze was quieted by the bright sun, all of the landscape and lack of human progress around us made for a serene setting in the form of our reality. The work of moving the wood to the porch was over and we found ourselves in another discussion, perhaps about mountains and people that travel to them.
All of a sudden out of the still quiet coming from the west and fast was the sound of a powerful jet plane. As soon as I heard it, another aircraft appeared and caught up to the first one doubling the nightmarish scream headed right for us from the west. I was sitting in the cab of my truck facing Jeff and east as they came bearing down on our position a few thousand feet above the tree tops at around about 500mph. Involuntarily I stepped out on the ground a few more paces to get a better line of sight, there they were perfectly clear in their presentation of progress.
Two F-22 Raptors flying in a small echelon emitting a strange right wing only contrail raced east in the cloudless Carolina sky. I identified these machines based on their particular underbelly profile that clearly displayed front and rear wings which are cut out at the same angle. Dark and modern stealth fighters are easily scrambled into the sky over this fine nation in the name of an agenda.
Just as the two planes passed by us, two more F-22 Raptors came shrieking from the same direction as the first ones did. We realized that this show of force and display of flying weapons of mass destruction must have something to do with the NFL, the Carolina Panthers and the numbing down of a Nation's Culture desperately seeking something to believe in and be proud of. A fly by over the stadium, of course.
I made this image of an empty BOA Stadium last month.
Interestingly enough, a few minutes after all four cleared our location, maybe 15 or 20 miles to the east, the motors came back to life and sounded like they were deep bending and accelerating even more as the planes turned to head back west right for us and on to Charlotte. They must have only been practicing on the earlier pass. Now was the real deal headed for Bank of America Stadium, a bunch of cheering Americans with their fists in the air and kick off of a spectator sport that has absolutely no implications in any of the fans' lives, but it does tell a true story about the strategy of a Nation waging war abroad.
On their second pass coming back I thought about the visceral connection to what I see as real. I thought about how within a few minutes anyone paying attention near the uptown would hear, then see these mechanical instruments in the sky and have a perception based on what they were seeing and feeling. I wondered about the pilots of these crafts. Do they think they are invincible with such thrust energy and fire power created in Indiana at their finger tips? Do they realize how deathly ominous and full of terror that they appear to me from my perspective as a human with my feet on the ground? Then there is the crowd in the stadium taking the few seconds needed to pull the corporate plan of aggression away from their faces long enough to actually feel something about the darkness they are seeing rip across the sky. I stood still as these planes disappeared to the west now in what looked like a wedge. The missing man formation this far out will surely carry enough energy to make the crowd cheer and completely miss the end result point for failure to identify the consequences of our collective actions.