Nipigon 2002

Two Brothers and a Cousin

The Year of Legends and Lore is here!

You've heard the drunken stories. You've seen the scars. You might have even had the pleasure of smelling the socks that Tom had framed. Here at last is the illustrated narrative to prove the legend true!

The year was 2002 and my brother Tom needed a job. And my cousin Colin was bored or feeling adventurous or something. At the last minute he decided treeplanting might be fun so he came along for the ride. Buwuhahahahahaha!

The plan was to pile everything into my $500 car and drive up straight to Nipigon...

Two brothers and a cousin.

Car Crash The Crash

Well, so much for the plan! Ten kilometres outside of Matheson my favourite brother swerved off the road in the pre-dawn twilight. The car cartwheeled once and rolled a couple of times before it came to rest on the verge of the bush. Miraculously we all walked away with out so much as a scratch.

We walked away without even a scratch. The car on the other hand... I hate to confuse nouns, but my car in this instance was toast.

Towing The Towing

I sold the old car for the price of towing. We then strapped and duct-taped all of our possessions to ourselves and attempted to hitch-hike the remaining eight hundred kilometres or so to Nipigon. We made a valiant effort, making it about 250km to Kapuskasing where our luck finally ran dry. We reluctantly admitted defeat and bought bus tickets with the last of our cash. The moral of the story is this: when God gives you lemons, make lemonade. But you can't make cheese from boogers.

The Wreck and the Reckless: Colin poses for a shot in front of carcass or my car.

The Tents Tents with Snow Fortifying The Compound

The Shelter

We arrived in the dead of night and set up our tents in the dark. With only one giant tarpaulin between us we had to set up our three tents close to one another. It's good we did, because the temperature dropped precipitously two days later, covering the whole camp in a blanket of snow. With drifts beginning to accumulate against our tents we determined to build a windbreak out of whatever we could scavenge. A downed spruce tree and a poplar tree provided us with most of the material that built what was to be universally referred to as "The Compound".

Keeping Warm Framing Weaving Finnishing touches
The Screef Hut

We were snowed out three or four days in May (that is to say, there was too much accumulated snow to plant trees). Without being able to work and having no place to stay warm we had to keep moving. A bunch of us determined to build a shelter based on... well, I'm not sure what the blueprints were based on. Basically we burried the bases of several poplars around a hole in the ground and then bent them over to form a dome. Then we wove poplar branches between the posts and covered as much of the dome as we could with and sod and evergreen boughs, trying to make a windbreak with a bit of insulating value.

Boat Racing Boat Racing
Boat Racing
Ah, old school Wilderness... To the left I give you Colin, now called "The Hurricane". The Hurricane here is a few days shy of going bush crazy, which essentially involved wearing his "hobo hat" (a ripped up sweater sleeve) and lapsing into an incoherent Newfoundlander dialect peppered with ravings of going to Mexico. His drinking buddy is known as Barnyard. Both are members of Liz's crew, so called Viking Power. To the right are the Duff Riders, with Tom (sometimes called "Delmar") and Pat The Bone to his left.

Poplar Point The Cream
Cream land did come. Eventually. Unfortunately it ran out about as quickly as white flag after an ugly detour down Giardia Lane.

Nigel and Jay crack the whip on a frantic close out.

Duff Riders The Duff Riders
The Duff Riders are Jay Sheridan's infamous legacy. May god have mercy on his filthy soul.

Is this Treeplanting or Resevoir Dogs? At least the weather got nicer...

Won't you send some POT 2 JO please? Won't you send some POT 2 JO please? -sung to the tune of American Pie.

Poplar Point The Good Old Boys
It was a rugged season but we came through it all the stronger. I feel like I went up to Nipigon with a cousin and car-wrecking punk-assed drunk, but came home with a pair of brothers. Perhaps one day we'll all turn up on the same contract again.... Until that glorious day in treeplanting Valhalla, however, we'll just have to dwell nostalgically. Alabama Slammers all around!

Three brothers: Delmar, The Hurricane and myself.

Got Nipigon '02 pics? Send them to Alex: sexgodinthebuff at hotmail dot com. Where's The Bourgeoisie?!? Does anyone have a decent pic of Iron Lui? Any shots of the Jellico set up? SEND THEM ALONG!