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March 21, 2013

'Geezering: an act of doing stuff with another old guy


As an old retired English pedagogue I have been known to grumble and waste good spittle when ranting about inane perversions of language. I now find myself guilty of that horrid habit of twisting nouns into verbs by settling on geezering as a way of describing two old retired guys pairing up a few afternoons a week to split and stack firewood, replete with periodic respites often characterized by hefty venting and belly busting laughter. Of course, the laughter is never at our expense. An observer sitting quietly to the side might think all we ever do is take breaks, laugh, lean on our splitting mauls or just stand there jawing about what to do next and how to go about it. The very serious discussion of creative uses of discarded pallets would have been particularly fascinating. We call it pallet art.

Yesterday while we were loading up some wood into J’s van, I suggested that if some old coot were checking us out from a hiding place out back he would have doubled over with laughter after watching me head up to a tall pile of logs and start sweeping them clean of snow. The ancient distinction between appearances and reality comes to mind. If I were in his shoes I too would have been equally puzzled — and surely amused. Truth is, I knew it would warm up today and that if I did brush away as much snow as possible, come tomorrow cutting the logs into stove lengths would be a mite easier. I would rather my newly sharpened chain cut through only wood. At any rate, sweeping logs can be fun. The best part is standing back and appreciating one’s work — whatever it is. There is a special satisfaction that comes from being able, at the end of the day, to actually look at/touch what you have done.

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