Unsatisfied with his career as a latex salesman, Anatoly Büsseldorf abandoned his comfortable, yet spartan, life and embarked on a quest to capture the stories of those living in America’s small towns and overlooked villages and hamlets.
This, he believed, was where the true soul of the nation resided, and he hoped to record and share small tales and anecdotes that he would glean from those he met as he traveled throughout the country.
Tragically, Büsseldorf died during a corn on the cob eating contest during the Funks Grove Maple Syrup Festival.
As Funks Grove was his first, and therefore only stop, only two of his “Tales of the Midwest” had been recorded at the time of his death.
After reading his first two short entries, Christmas Mornin’ and the Silo Factory one can certainly be assured that Büsseldorf was most definitely embarking on a labor of love, and had no dreams of commercial success or critical accolades, as these tales were completely pointless and made absolutely no sense.
We’d watch the guys going in and coming out, and we knew one that’d be us. Out here in Funk’s Grove, those silos ain’t just a job. No, siloings a legacy.
It wasn’t easy work, running those silos, but my grandad had done it and my father had done it. There wasn’t much else to do round here, just farming and siloing, and I was born and bred to be a siloer.
But I remember one Christmas when I was growing up more then any other. All I wanted for Christmas that year was a tree, my very own apple tree. Dad said it would take up too much land though, that we didn’t have the room and that it wouldn’t produce enough for the family.
Sure enough though, when I came downstairs on Christmas morning there underneath the tree… was another tree.
Dad made me pick those apples all summer, and that was the happiest I ever remember being.