A Toast to the Logger
And the sailing ships came
To the shores of the Pacific
And the sailors went ashore –
And cut down
The tall limber fir trees,
And with the bites of those axes
Into the trees
A forest industry was born
And the sailor became a man among men
He became a west coast logger.
A man of the wind
A man of the rain
A man of the snow and blazing sun
A man of the forest.
GENTLEMEN – TO THAT MAN –
THE LOGGER OF BRITISH COLUMBIA
A Toast to the Logger
A glass of beer – at the West Hotel
A jug of rye – in the back of the bunkhouse
A cup of home brew from behind the cookhouse stove
A shot of wine – at a bootleggers palace
A thermos of coffee on a windswept booming grounds
And a handful of water – from a sidehill stream
THESE ARE THE LIQUIDS OF LOGGERS
LONG MAY THEY WET THEIR THIRSTY TONGUES
GENTLEMEN – A TOAST
TO THE LOGGER…
The Day they Logged the Timber Club
Well, young lad – that was some day,
And I remember it like it was yesterday.
Now stop your squirmin' – an' listen
Cause what I'm about to tell you
Is the greatest logging story of all time
Now it happened back in twenty ought ten
When I was a young helicopter chokerman.
We'd logged off every damned inch
Of the province of British Columbia
An' there wasn't enough wood left to make
A box of toothpicks.
She was woodless boy – not a stick.
Why we'd cleaned off Stanley park
And even Siwash rock.
She was a bald headed west coast,
An' even old timers with wooden legs
Was packin' shotguns fer protection.
An' then some real smart guy
Comes up with the idea of
Puttin' up a setting in the Timber Club.
Now I know this sounds far out
But remember boy, wood was scarce an' it was high,
A million dollars a million-
An' that was just stumpage!
Well the engineers sized up the oldTimber Club,
One sez – we'll never get loggin' trucks
Backed up in here to load.
They was a puzzled bunch of loggin' engineers
'till up pops this feller – Buck number four,
A descendant of the famous Buck number one.
Sez Buck number four – use horses,
Like they did in the old days –
So by gosh – they laid her all out –
Brought in the fallers – and down comes
The cedar logs – a smashing to the tables.
Some of the eaters was quite annoyed
Then in comes the team of horses
And they hook up the cedars
An' start skidding them right out the door.
Two old fellows with long grey beards
Was watchin' this performance – an shakin' their heads.
One sez t'other, "Arthur, times is changin'"
"Sure is Vic" – t'other fella sez.
Well son – they logged her clean
There wasn't a timber left in the old Timber Club.
They even took the table legs for small wood.
An' when the last log was pulled out
They changed the name an' called it the Slash Club.
An' that's a true loggin' story son –
An' if you don't believe me,
Just ask those two old grey bearded fellers
Standin' over there, holding up the roof.
The First Logger
And the Lord looked down
And he gazed all around
And he spake – we've made 'em all –
We've got bankers and bakers, and a handful of fakers,
We've got tailors and sailors, brewers and jailors.
We've got preachers and teachers and all sorts of creatures
But we haven't got a logger.
So the lord opened his book
And from a recipe took
The ingredients to cast a mold.
With a teaspoon of muscle – and a potion of hustle,
A few drops of toughness – and a smatter of roughness
Stirred in with a heart of gold.
Thunder and lightning cracked at the dawn
Of the day this logger was born,
With an axe in each hand
He said – Lord, which land
Shall I chop down as soon as it's morn.
Spake the – logger man.
Cut the trees from the plain
Cause we've gotta have grain
So Saskatchewan's your first stop.
Then Africa's land needs a lot more sand
Every tree on Sahara you'll chop.
And take from Sudan –
Whatever you can –
Keep swinging that axe 'till you drop.
Then run, logger man, as fast as you can
Cut the north and south polar trees,
'cause I made a mistake and we need to remake
Those lands into a deep freeze.
And the logger chopped
And the trees they dropped
And he did as the Lord had told.
And the grain grew high
And the sand did fly
And explorers were froze in the cold.
Yea verily – this is how it began,
One logger – who cleared those lands for man.
Like a tempest in a whirlwind
He would have cut all worldly trees,
But the lord made politicians
And they slowed him to a breeze.
For the Lord had other work to do
And the logger was caught in the politicians brew
Of stumpage and royalty, guidelines and tax,
Gentlemen – that's what dulled the first logger's axe.
TO THE FIRST LOGGER
AND ALL HIS DESCENDENTS:
BUT PARTICULARLY TO THOSE HIGH RIGGERS
THAT WE MISS TONITE
GENTLEMEN – YOUR GLASSES
"keep out of the bight"