Tougher & Last Man Standing

Fifties Flatdeck Truck - Nampa, Alberta
Fifties Flatdeck Truck - Nampa, Alberta

A few things make today a tougher go – not the legitimate student response to spring’s arrival and the fever it’s engendering, nor is it those minds that recognize that their attitudes are blocked, stalemated or closed with the past six months of winter’s interior Life at home and school; at this time of year openness in perception, thought and attitude itches in angst to break free of winter’s constraints of living.  These are all within the arena of Life work in early spring in High Level, Alberta.

At this time of year, it’s too easy to say the wrong thing. It’s too easy to get caught-up in oneself and one’s endeavors. It’s too easy to neglect where one’s care needs legitimate directing.  This season is one in which humour can get you into serious trouble while also being a source of tremendous healing and celebration.  It’s a time of year when it’s good to have a bonfire that is shared among others, a bonfire that extends the day into the wee hours of the night.  It’s a time when strength of body and strength of mind carry you forward into this next season that is spring.  At such a bonfire it’s good to have a keeper of the fire, the last man standing for when the last ember dies, someone we know who will see the night through on our behalf when we find that we should direct ourselves home and to sleep.  And, perhaps that’s it, the toughest part of today is that of helping one’s body overcome extended wakefulness as the season changes from winter to spring.

The photograph presented here is that of a late fifties flat-deck truck in Nampa, Alberta.  In Nampa the historical-agricultural museum is in the process of re-locating.  So, farming equipment/implements, vehicles, train cars and buildings are shifting location.  Until the new site is completed these items remain scattered throughout Nampa.  This flat-deck truck sits in someone’s backyard alongside other vehicles and looks to be in readiness for use. This truck has seen perhaps fifty or so years of service and its structure still has integrity.  It seems to be one of the last vehicles standing and seems to have strength associated with preserved shape and ability to function.  Its look is that which we’d find in the wizened face, that face of the last man standing – the keeper of the fire – when we need to direct ourselves to sleep.

Listening to Over the Rhine’s Spark, Joseph Arthur’s In the Sun (with Michael Stipe) and U2’s One;  other songs have included Eric Angus Whyte’s Beggars and Buskers (of Belfast), Liz Longley’s Free and the Steve Miller Band’s Rock’n Me.  My daughter has had me download Young the Giant’s Cough Syrup and Kelly Clarkson’s Stronger (What Doesn’t Kill You);  Demi Lovato’s Skyscraper has also received download tonight.

Quotes to Inspire –  (1) “If I knew how to take a good photograph, I’d do it every time.” –  Robert Doisneau; and, (2) “If I have any ‘message’ worth giving to a beginner it is that there are no short cuts in photography.” – Edward Weston.

5 Comments on “Tougher & Last Man Standing

    • Hey there, Kharma:

      The imagery ‘is’ indeed everywhere and perhaps distracts and scatters reader focus … definitely some dancing in circles, and not direct dialogue about disappointing sad news, something close to home, yesterday.

      Sensory overload … a great way to talk to my students about consistency of sensory modality(ies) in writing. Cool!!

      Take care,

      • well well well, it isn’t often I inspire a teacher….so, awesome.
        I am easily distracted, and I kinda thought that was why I enjoy the different various parts of your posts, while still keeping coherency. It’s great for me. To some, maybe “scatterbrained”, but from someone who has a terribly short attention span, I dig em the most, Lumens. Cool

  1. I find it interesting listening or reading people talking about coming out of winter, spring fever and all that. It is fascinating, I suppose it isn’t to you, but where I am, we don’t get anything like that. Our Summers are really hot, our winters are cold, but no where near as cold as yours. We get no snow, and the change is very subtle. We get days that are like winter in summer, and we can get very warm hot days in winter. STrange. Have really enjoyed your blog so far, looking forward to what you do in the summer.

    • Hey there, Leanne:

      Please forgive the following blunt take on winter’s spring fever. Basically, there’s a condition termed ‘crump,’ something acknowledging the sudden seepage of sh*t to the brain that’s part of how we’ve closed our minds in, through habits personally and socially … perhaps at this time of year we’d acknowledge such angst-ridden, unoxygenated, cabin fever as a sustained seepage of sh*t to the brain (not in the individual, but amongst the group). We get over it, go through it and make our way around it. We manage it. And, we hop on planes and get ourselves to Mexico or the Caribbean or anywhere warmer and further along in spring’s progress ….

      You’d have fun reading Canadian, prairie novelist W.O. Mitchell and his book, The Black Bonspiel of Willie MacCrimmon. It contains a feel for what this time of year can be like … perhaps it’s more Canadian prairie life in January or early February. Mitchell has Mark Twain’s flare for humour within situation and he uses it to expose all that Canada is, well.

      Take care,

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