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Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Corvallis 'Big Wood' services are misinterpreted by perverted minds

Coupon for Corvallis 'Big Wood' services received in mail Sep. 2016

PHOTO: A coupon for "All tree & Stump Services" by "Big Wood Tree Expert Company of Corvallis, Oregon" was apparently sent to households in the Benton County area, which I received in the U.S. mail on Sept. 19, 2016. The company's About Us page says, "Justin Gammon has been serving Lincoln County, Linn County, Benton County, and Lane County in tree removal service since 1998." I've never used this service and I don't know it they are good or not, so this blog post is not an advertisement for them!

Perhaps it is because I was perverted by living in San Francisco for a few years, but my first reaction to the above advertisement was that any business named "Big Wood" must only be a downtown gay bar in San Francisco that caters to the gay male lumberjack types who wear Paul Bunyan's mythical plaid shirts and have never been in an actual forest. (Note: the term lumberjack is NOT used in Oregon like it is in Minnesota, because there are NO lumberjacks in Oregon -- instead men who cut timber in Oregon always call themselves loggers and they will derisively label anyone who calls them a lumberjack as being from "back East.")

Of course, I have no excuse for such perverted thinking because I literally live next door to the Oregon State University School of Forestry's research forest, where tree removal is a serious academic field of study, and so I appreciate the irony of a local tree removal business using the name "Big Wood Services."

A recent local newspaper story concerning "Big Wood" skillfully combined these memes together:

"Preparations are under way for moving the historic Peavy House . . .

The 101-year-old Peavy House, located at Northwest 25th Street and Northwest Jackson Avenue, is scheduled for a move across Northwest Monroe Avenue and through a campus parking lot at 6 a.m. Sunday morning. Its new site will be an open lot at Northwest 30th Street and Northwest Johnson Avenue. . .

The original owner was George Wilcox Peavy. He headed the forestry department in 1910 and in 1934 was named president of what was then Oregon State College. He also was elected the mayor of Corvallis in 1947. Peavy lived for many years in the house with his wife and children; he died in Corvallis on June 24, 1951. . .

Big Wood Tree Expert Company began trimming branches on Tuesday and continued to trim them on Orchard Avenue Wednesday. Tree branches lower than 32 feet high were trimmed back to make room for the 2,900-square-foot house, which is 32 feet high and 35 feet wide.

"We're trimming the sides of trees," said Paul Christensen, the head climber for the tree company. That is not like topping them, which would affect the trees' long-term viability."

(Quoted from Joce DeWitt, "History on the move," posted Jun. 19, 2012)

For more, see the article about "George Wilcox Peavy (1932-1940)," Special Collections & Archives Research Center, Oregon State University Libraries, accessed Oct. 31, 2016, who was the OSU Dean of Forestry, and was appointed acting president of Oregon State College in 1932. Despite George Peavy having the same name of a common logging tool, he is not the inventor of it. (See "Peavey (tool)," accessed Oct. 31, 2016, which says, "The peavey was named for blacksmith Joseph Peavey of Upper Stillwater, Maine, who invented the tool as a refinement to the cant hook (also known as a "cant dog") in the 1850s. Many lumberjacks use the terms interchangeably. . . The Peavey Manufacturing Co. is still located in Eddington, Maine." (Notice the use of "lumberjack" in the Wikipedia article. It must have been written by somebody back East! Any Forestry Major at OSU would have correctly said "logger" instead of "lumberjack.")