Friday, November 10, 2006

The Warm Glow


Writing the Starry Night article reminded me of the old wood stove I heated the house with at that time. After a few nights of burning wood I found I could calculate how long the wood that I had under cover would last. There was only enough to last until mid-January.

I went out the following day and purchased a new chain saw with a 20 inch bar, and started working on the slash piles left behind by the previous owner who had logged a couple acres. Trees that were leaning or rubbing against another tree on the upper wooded acreage were fair game as well. I wouldn’t cut anything that was healthy.

There were some nice hunks of alder in the slash piles which I cut, and trailered down the hill. Once there I split and stacked the wood. Eventually it made it into the house for burning.

It is said that the difference between good alder and rotten alder is about 15 minutes. Though the alder was still good, the quick change became evident to me one night. I had a nice stack of wood in a corner by the wood stove, and one night I woke up to go to the bathroom, and that was a good time to check the fire as well. However when I looked down into the dark living room I saw the strangest sight. The wood pile was glowing. It was pretty creepy; the damn pile of wood was glowing like it was radioactive or something.

I turned the light on to see what the hell was going on, and the glow stopped. I turned the light off and it glowed again. I picked up a sample of the wood to examine it closer, and there seemed to be a yellowish tint to some parts of the wood. Turn the light off and the yellow part glowed.

The following day I asked someone about it and they told me it was phosphorescent mold, and it isn’t all that uncommon here. In fact if you get stuck fishing the Lewis and Clark River in the canyons above the 400 line in the dark you will often see the forest floor glowing when you leave.

What a strange and wonderful place.

14 Comments:

Blogger Boo7 said...

WOW that sounds totally freaky....who knew there was such a thing as phosphorescent mold??? And to see it in your kitchen while wandering around in the middle of the night would scare the bejeeeeeeeeeeeezus outta me!!!

I can't imagine seeing a whole forest floor lit up....well it would be very cool to see....**strains of the twilight zone theme heard in the distance**

6:41 AM  
Anonymous portosan said...

Sometimes the beach has little things that sparkle when you walk on it at night. Really, the sand glitters with each step.

Ok, I will stop licking the toads if Guy does.

7:05 AM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

This is a pretty wet area, Barb, so we have an abundance of strange things that thrive in this climate.

And in Cannon Beach there is barking sand, where when you walk on it, it makes a barking sound.

Another cool thing is the magnatite in the beach sand by the Peter Iredale that lines up in magnetic rows from North to South.

Oregon is a strange and wonderful place.

7:26 AM  
Blogger Boo7 said...

from the sounds of it Orengon is an awesome place!!! Beaches are another one of my favourite things....don't ask me why I live in landlocked Southern Ontario!!!

7:35 AM  
Blogger Boo7 said...

and if I could spell...all would be right with the world!!! Oregon

7:36 AM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Ahh, Barb, but you live near one of my favorite places on Earth. There is a lake 30 miles outside of Buckingham Quebec. I'll tell you about it sometime, sigh...

8:24 AM  
Blogger Boo7 said...

please do tell...please, please, please!! Always love to hear about other people's favourite places on earth.....**smile**

10:17 AM  
Anonymous Moosehead said...

"Sigh..." "Oregon is a strange and wonderful place"..."the forest floor glowing"..."the pile of wood glowing like it was radioactive"...Guy - GET A GRIP!!! Either this year's harvest is exceptionally good or the Koolaiddrinkingkid has found his way to your back porch with his stash of shrooms. Yesterday, it was the stars waxing poetically and now this. Are we into the brownies again for old time's sake??? My only surprise is that Gearhead is not on your case!! Barbequed Chicken for the Soul??? or just plain toad licking?? (Thanks for that one Porto but you see, it wasn't strong enough to ground out Guy.) Some will pay attention to the tap on their shoulders and others need a piano falling on them. I feel the breeze of an RB... RB comment coming on like the tides of the Bay of Fundy or of the Reversing Falls or like the magical appearance of the burning Phanthom Ship.

4:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oregon is the best State in the Union.
There is nothing like going to the jetty watching, listening to the waves during a storm.
Our river view is always magnetic.
Our forests are extravagant.
Our air is clean.
I'm going to get a brownie and enjoy the pouring rain.

5:28 PM  
Anonymous cosmo said...

the wet sand glitters in late summer because of a phospherescent plankton commonly referred to around here by generations of locals as "nocta lucis"(sp) Latin for "night lights"...it's same little biloluminescant plankton that causes boat wakes to glow at night in the river and ocean.

As for why the sand sometimes squeaks or "barks", that happens during extended hot dry sunny periods on the north coast like in August and September. Our local sand holds a lot of moisture even if it's "dry" sand. An extended severe drying out causes it to squeak when disturbed by feet

8:53 PM  
Anonymous cosmo said...

bioluminescent

not

"biloluminescant"

8:57 PM  
Anonymous gearhead said...

Moosehead, while I have noticed the same euphoria in Guy's recent posts, I'm sure drugs were not involved.
More likely, the shift to democratic majority here has produced a reaction similar to the lighting of a cigarette directly after...

Comment Deleted
This post has been removed by the blog administrator

9:51 PM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Thanks for covering me Cosmo. If I had the stamina I had 15 years ago you would have been able to attribute the last two posts to some sort of substance. However I realized I was mortal a while back so now I always say, "no, thank you" to drugs. Nancy Reagan was rude by just saying No, when No thank you seems much more polite, don't you think?

Just when you think Moosehead is a friend, he starts projecting...

Gearhead, as for the current state of politics...I'm pretty disinterested. It was tha game of the race that I enjoyed. I collected my winnings, bought a round, and added to the retirement fund. Ready to place odds two years from now.

10:10 PM  
Anonymous portosan said...

Whew! (relieved)

Thought for a minute I had got ahold of some bad toad. Thanks cosmo.

Thanks mooesehead, off to google "reversing falls"

I want to get out on the jetty more. The thought of being out there during stormy weather sounds exciting. And wet. I agree anonymous. The Columbia enchants something within me. I would be pleased to gaze out at that river all day if I could. I would take Astoria and the river over looking out to sea anyday.

Gearhead gave me my first smile and laugh of the day!

8:22 AM  

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