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Wrestling Bears With Fillions


By Buck Foster

Unique.  Personalized. Sturdy and incredibly functional. Since I was a kid, I have searched for things that were a step above…something that made me different than all the other people around me. 

So when I noticed a friend’s Fillion, it immediately caught my eye. I had searched for something similar for some time. I had hardback covers that I obtained from my university, the ones that are faux leather and last about a day so I never did like them much.  At the endless meetings, mine looked just like everyone else's. I felt like a sheep, like one of the herd. It wasn’t my style. So, I carried nothing to the meetings except a memo pad, but when the piles of papers began coming I started losing stuff.  

The Fillion was my ticket. It was a step above. With a Fillion, I would not be a sheep and I would not lose papers! Little Mountain Bindery even stamped my name on it, making it forever mine. And when archaeologists are scratching the dirt and brooming away the long sad remains of my office in about 2,000 years, they will find a few Twinkies sure, but most importantly, they will find my Fillion with my name on it. They will know Professorus Fosterpithicus once roamed here.

I love the full-grain leather.  It is not going to tear unless you are fighting a bear and then the bear still might come away with a scratch or two. This thing is going to last and look good doing it. I feel like a medieval messenger with a parchment for the king or a cowboy riding desperately across the Great Plains to get that letter to Aunt Polly about young Johnny!  If I ever get on “Naked and Afraid,” my Fillion will be my one survival item.

It is functional in a way that users can customize with a calendar or notepad or whatever. I keep loads of papers in mine. As you can see, I have two that I keep close and there is, yes, another one in my vehicle.  Have you ever seen the last picture of Albert Einstein’s desk piled full of papers and spilling over? I haven’t solved any field equations lately, but I have papers all over the place and the fillion lets me keep the most important ones safe and accessible (like those tickets to the Guns and Roses concert).

I serve as a member of the Arkansas Humanities Council, the Arkansas Historical Association Board, and several other committees. I never go to any of these meetings without my Fillion. As a matter of a fact, I don’t go many places without at least one of my Fillions. Who knows? Aunt Polly might need a letter.

Buck T. Foster

Buck Foster is a history professor at University of Central Arkansas in Conway, a member of the Prairie Grove Battlefield Advisory Commission, Member of the Board of Trustees for the Arkansas Historical Asssociation and a Board Member of the Arkansas Humanities Council. 



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