How Long Can A Cable-Tow Be?

by Midnight Freemason Contributor
Bro. Brian J. Schimian

I have written several pieces in the past year about my “travels” and the experiences that they have brought me and every time, my Cable-Tow seems to get longer.  At a point, I was 2,000 miles from where I lived and couldn’t have felt more at home.  I flew out to the west coast to be with my Lady and her kids for the holidays and had “extended” my stay a few months...

This also means that I missed my flight home.  I decided that while “vacationing” I was going to need a way to get around, so I started looking for a vehicle and ended up buying an H3.  I assure you my decision was NOT based on gas mileage.

Anyways…  I had been able to travel around the greater Los Angeles area a bit and even visited a few Lodges.  The Brotherhood is flowing very well on the West Coast.  I had the pleasure to attend the Raising of a new Master Mason at Granada Hills Lodge #378, F&AM.  This also marked the first time I have ever been investigated.  Being that I grew up around the guys from my home lodge, I wasn’t even investigated when I petitioned back in 1998.  Heck, it was a given that I was going to join the lodge when my petition was handed to ME to sign.  Possibly after it was voted on… I never could get a straight story on that one.  I do know that there was a bit of a pushing match for second and third line signers…  Anyway, the investigation was a first for them too.  I hold a life membership from my home Lodge and to save on expenses, I don’t get a dues card every year.  I have a hard plastic card with my “credentials” on it.  Did I mention that Cali doesn’t do life memberships?  It was a night of first’s all around…  The investigation would have gone flawless if there weren't four full grown men standing in a closet…  All went well enough for me to be allowed admittance and the Degree went off without a hitch.

I must say that every time I attend another Lodge, be it: NMJ, SJ, F&AM or AF&AM, I always see something that blows me away.  This time, and strictly speaking of the opening of the Lodge, was not any different.  I won’t get specific so as to not offend or violate my obligations, I will just leave it at, even though at the base, all of our “ritual” is mostly the same, there are intricate differences that make “traveling” that much more worth the time and effort.  I am also pleased to say that my “traveling” has brought to where my masonic journey began, DeMolay.  I continue to meet Brothers from this wonderful thing ours and every one of them welcomes me with love in their heart.  I can’t help but wonder, having traveled as far west as I can (in the continental United States), how long can my Cable-Tow really be?  I have found a true friend and Brother and grown my family with Bro. Robert P. Lewis, his Lady and their kids.  Now that I'm back home in the midwest, my Cable-Tow stretches over half the width of the lower 48.

My plans at that point had not all been exhausted and I had a few more adventures before my 2,000 mile drive home.  But one thing proves itself to be true every time I travel, Freemasonry really is the greatest thing to ever happen to me.  It never quits, takes a day off, calls in sick or ceases to amaze me.

Speaking of driving from L.A. to Chicago…  I am going to need all of you to send me your contact information, available accommodations and amenities…


Bro. Brian Schimian is Life of Member A.O. Fay #676 in Highland Park Illinois and the Medinah Shriners - Lake County Shrine Club. He was also the Past Master Counselor of DeMolay - Lakes Chapter in 1995. Most recently, Brian became a Companion of the York Rite, joining Waukegan Chapter #41 R.A.M. Brian is a father of two children. "Start Square, Finish Level"


  1. Actually, California DOES have life memberships -- I am one -- but I still get a dues card, that says "Life Member" each year.

  2. Nice essay, and very reminiscent of my growing up Masonically in Southern California. I visited DeMolay in Granada Hills many times.
    Be well - and come visit a California transplant at Kirkland Lodge #150 in Kirkland, Washington if you should find yourself up this way.