Ostentation Station

Fred holds the Bird Flu mascot
Fred holds the Bird Flu mascot

I’m not sure. I was thinking about possibly using this shot for the last-page author bio for the book.

But it might seem a bit ostentatious, what with the clean Carharrts, new Muck Boots, and even the chicken is all cleaned and pressed.

I dunno. I don’t want to come off as too polished. Whaddaya think?

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. What a terrific picture! Hope you use it someplace in the book, but you might also want to include one like you have on the blog. Take care.

  2. Fred…believe me…you don’t come off as too pollished in that picture. If you were wearing a suit and tie…welll, maybe, but you look absolutely like a country kook…and it’s really a lovely photo.

  3. I agree with Robeert: grabs attention and not serious. All other authors’ photos are studio shots. How dull.

  4. I love how folks so often miss my sarcasm. I guess I’m just too earnest in my pretense? Nah, I wasn’t really worried about appearing too “dressed up” in rubber boots and canvas pants. And Cate, you’re right: both show considerable wear at this point–slick bottoms on the boots and the Carharrts are soaked in 2-cycle oil. But the chicken is still well groomed, living in an overhead nook in the ANNex.

  5. I think the picture is perfect. (Except… well, I wasn’t aware that the bird flu had its own mascot. Or that it needs one. Will the bird flu mascot be duking it out with, say, the SARS mascot at the next big game?)