Godspeed, Garbage Yard

Demolition Machine gets down to it House be gone...
Demolition machine at rest Garbage Yard be gone

In five years of weblogging, nothing I’ve written has provoked the range and intensity of reaction that my meditation on Garbage Yard did. The comments expressed disbelief, hilarity, confusion, outrage, and remorse. It prompted inquiry from Canada’s national broadcasting network. I received concerned telephone calls and gratifying personal support. I came to understand that Garbage Yard was something more important, more profound than I had previously believed. Garbage Yard was bigger than this blog by a long shot.

Last Friday, I awoke just past dawn, the room shaking. It was not an earthquake, alas, but the arrival of Demolition Machine. A few minutes of full-bore tread work reduced Garbage Yard to a compacted layer of detritus and soon the flattening of Garbage Yard House was underway. By noon, most of the debris had been cleared into a series of large container trucks. Garbage Yard was transformed into Construction Site in a single devastating blow.

Leaving me forever changed. Thank you Garbage Yard — you made me laugh, you made me cry, you made me think. You live on in my memories, and in my dreams.

About Brian

I am a Strategist and Discoordinator with UBC's Centre for Teaching, Learning and Technology. My main blogging space is Abject Learning, and I sporadically update a short bio with publications and presentations over there as well...
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4 Responses to Godspeed, Garbage Yard

  1. Jason says:

    first comment! 😉

    yesss bring it all down! That must have been quite a show, and all from view of your back porch. sweet!

  2. Steve says:

    Sounds like you’ve had too much free time on your hands. 😉

  3. Kirsten says:

    What strikes me as especially odd about the phenomenon that is Garbage Yard is that it is essentially the OPPOSITE of looting. Rather than breaking in and stealing everything, Vancouverites are compulsively dumping their old junk where anyone can take it.

    And maybe that should give you hope for mankind when the big earthquake comes: your home and family will be safe, but your space will be cluttered with unusable appliances.

  4. Brian says:

    Jason — Harry enjoyed the show as well, though perhaps not as much as expected.

    Steve – How DARE you? I worked like a fiend all weekend, doing yardwork, YARDWORK. My hands are covered in earthy proletarian calluses. At one point when I was walking out front with Harry he looked back on the gathered compost heaps and tools, looked at me, and said “garbage yard.” You and him would make a good matched pair.

    Kirsten – Thanks for offering an intriguing angle I hadn’t considered… and believe me I thought through a lot of them. I’ll have to work decluttering into our Home Disaster Preparation Plan.

    And I have that garage full of old construction materials I didn’t get rid of… watching how easily the excavator disposed of everything, I feel like it was a missed opportunity. Too busy gawking and talking about the phenomenon to get in on the magic, it’s the story of my life.

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