The guy said, “Sure.” When they asked him where the best place for that might be, he looked at them and said, “Uh, anywhere.” So they drove a mile or so farther and started spinning the SUV all over, doing 180’s and 360’s and 720’s and so on, until they hit an ice rut and knocked a rear tire off its rim.
Finding themselves with a flat in the middle of a lake in a rented Nissan full of their photo equipment, they unloaded, hauled out the spare, changed the tire, drove off the ice, went to Brainerd, got the flat fixed, and had dinner. Fuck bald eagles.” The Mills Fleet Farm store in Brainerd was almost out of ice cleats, so I had to buy the most expensive brand, the only kind left, and I never regretted it.
I showed them the large, itchy bedbug bites I had acquired on my right shin as souvenirs of the new administration. Then: “Back when there was DDT, you never saw a bedbug,” Christian said. They banned it, and now we have bald eagles again,” Thomas said. “So what do you want: bald eagles and bedbugs, or no bedbugs and no bald eagles? It creaked and groaned, and twice it made a muffled boom that started the ice fragments rustling and tinkling with a sound that shot to the horizon like the trail of a rocket sled.” The augers started, one after another, adding to the other engine noises and exhaust fumes that already hung in the air.Two-person teams of drillers hefted the augers and headed out, following a pattern of markings that the snowmobiles and ATVs had laid down.The sun was setting, and white, blue-shadowed ice stretched into the distance all around.Thomas, the photographer for this story, and his assistant, Christian, had already arrived.