Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Paul Bunyan lives.

Reading a friend's blog today reminded me of a story.

We have heated our house with wood for a long time. The first time we put in a woodstove I was petrified because, hello? Fire inside the house? But I got used to it pretty quickly and claimed my spot right in front of the stove. I had executive privilege back then, only because I was bigger than all the children and could move them out of the way.

Of course, heating with a woodstove requires wood, and we learned it was a really good thing we had so many children. Everywhere we lived we spent time each year cutting trees down, hauling off the brush, and splitting rounds to dry for the next winter. Tree cutting always made me a little nervous, but Ben acted like he knew what he was doing, so I just took all the kids and stood way back. He never felled a tree on anyone's house or anything, so I figured it was all good.

One time, when we lived in another part of Virginia, we had these huge pine trees out back, one of which had died. I didn't want the whole thing cut down since I used it for part of my clothesline, but we needed to cut the top off. The kids and I were watching and Ben was talking smack about being able to put that tree down wherever he wanted it to land. I doubted his ability with much rolling of the eyes, so he said, "OK, tell me where you want it."

Naively taking the challenge I demanded, "Right across the pampas grass."

He set up his ladder against the base of the tree and started cutting. I waited for my sure victory.

Dang if he didn't put that stupid tree right across the pampas grass. He only had about a three-foot window and I figured he'd be lucky to even hit the plant, but that tree was right down the middle.

I shut my mouth and went back to hauling brush, properly de-sassed.

I get reminded of the Pampas-Grass-Incident whenever I doubt his ability to put a tree where he wants it. It still makes me nervous, but I've learned to keep quiet.

Be thankful ~



Deb said...

I think there is something in our genes that makes us attracted to the Paul Bunyans:)

JenIG said...

that is so funny. but really... how *do* they do that??!!