All muggled up

Writing about TCI Expo the other day reminded me of an incident which happened at a show in the US years ago.

I was demoing… something. Chatting about gear and techniques, you know the usual kind of thing: You could try a V-rig, or an add-in Prusik. Add a pulley here or Try this karabiner instead. You get the picture, geek talk, like.

It was the usual crowd for this kind of event: tree people, some lumberjack types (or as Don Blair would say, Oak and Euc people), some well clued up, others less so. But there was this one fellow who caught my eye. Long and lanky, long hair and beard, kaftan type tunic, lots of colour, floppy hat… just slightly off-beat. Even for an arb show, and that is saying something!

So after the demo he sidles up to me, and with a furtive glance around, starts talking to me in a hushed voice, about how he liked the demo and the gear and all. But then, following discussion ensued…

Beard guy: But aside from all that gear, what about magic?

Me: … you… whaaa’?

Beard guy: You know, magic.

Me (totally nonplussed): Err, good question, never really thought about it. 

Beard guy gives me a long, deep look and walks away, but not before I managed to read his name badge: Merlin.

Ah, yes, I am starting to understand. I was literally waiting for the guy to disappear in a puff of smoke (he did not).

So there you go, using magic in tree care seems to be an option for some – and who am I to judge. Actually, I would love a touch of magic when it comes to the tidy-up sometimes. Or dealing with awkward customers.

Magic it is then, Merlin. I am interested.