Trudging through the fifth dimension
January 09, 2008
There's a Twilight Zone marathon on the SciFi channel on New Year's Day.
The whole time I'm watching the episodes I realize two things:
1. I am in love with Rod Serling.
2. He is one of the wisest individuals to ever have walked the planet.
3. Rod Serling must have grown up in and/or visited a place that's to obscure to be real. And he probably didn't want to offend anyone so he named his show 'Twilight Zone' in an effort to disguise this very unusual place where certain things happen unlike they do anywhere else in the entire universe. Where facts and reality never get in the way of a good story; where reality is ignored, especially when it involves the truth. Or is spelled correctly. With punctuation.
The marathon really got my imagination going. I even started writing my own 'Twilight Zone' episode, but soon realize that it's rather boring and predictable and my need to sharpen my pen is overridden by my desire to walk the right path. So I decide to replace my ramblings with an affirmation for the New Year. Portions of the 'Anyway' poem by Mother Teresa:
People are often unreasonable, illogical and self centered; Forgive them anyway. If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives; Be kind anyway. If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies; Succeed anyway.
If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;
Be honest and frank anyway.
What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight; Build anyway....The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow; Do good anyway....Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough; Give the world the best you've got anyway.
You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and your God; It was never between you and them anyway. Yes...
...Still, Twilight Zone it is on New Year's Day. Waking up in a vast white wasteland is a bit of a surprise. I actually hear Rod's voice "There is a fifth dimension beyond that which is known to man. It is a dimension as vast as space and as timeless as infinity. It is the middle ground between light and shadow, between science and superstition, and it lies between the pit of man's fears and the summit of his knowledge. This is the dimension of imagination. It is an area which we call The Twilight Zone. And it is covered in snow..."
While it's true that the forecasters were issuing warnings for at least a day in advance, it's also true that their hyped up warnings often don't materialize into anything. This time, however, the warning materialized into about a foot of snow around here. And I'm stuck in this very wintry Twilight Zone.
As always, the true definition of "neighbor" manifests itself in my driveway. Mike in his little refurbished Jeep that like the Energizer bunny keeps going and going and going, makes pass after pass with the trusty machine, mounding the heavy white stuff like a pro. The swath he cut for my vehicle actually looks pretty, like something out of a winter in New England calendar. It also makes it possible for me to get here.
I start thinking about the snow removal equipment I've seen up north, and about the massive machines I saw lined up in rows in Tobermorey, Canada. Tobermorey is a unique, almost international little town at the very tip of the Bruce Peninsula. It's surrounded by Lake Huron on one side and the Georgian Bay on the other. It is one of the most beautiful places on the planet—and one of the snowiest. The snow removal equipment I saw when I was there was beyond huge. The plows on the front end of some of those machines were almost as tall as my one-story ranch home. The tires were as big as my car. Regular folks get around on snowmobiles (they call them snow machines). It's an extremely common sight to see them lined up outside of the bank, grocery store, local bar.
Around here DPW workers have had to load the snow into dump trucks and haul it out of town. County road crews spent New Year's Day and most of January 2nd scraping and salting and plowing and repeating it all.
Then three days later the frosty white crust on the earth transforms itself into an icy lake fed by muddy rivers that flow from driveways and ditches. Snow machines are replaced by brown-flecked earth-encrusted vehicles with drivers who've mudbogged their way down rural roads and into town.
Kind of like something you'd see in the Twilight Zone...
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