May 21-08

Past-E-Mail: Cam Notes - 2008: May: May 21-08
Surveying the horizon    ...scroll down to share comments
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Planning the job    ...scroll down to share comments
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Mary Drew at Pasty Central (Mdrew) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 03:35 am:

It's a bird, it's a plane, no it's that Pastyman!

I was recently sent these photographs from a source that wishes to remain anonymous, since he wasn't sure how the "man on the roof" would feel about his part in releasing them to me. ;->

In case you don't recognize the roof climber in the photos, that is our intrepid Webmaster, Charlie Hopper and no, he's not about to commit a burglary. Actually he's up on a Keweenaw rooftop, surveying the horizon - a portion of the procedure in getting a residence hooked up with Pasty.NET Internet Service (begun on May 19, 1999). This has been part of Charlie's everyday job for the past nine years, climbing up on rooftops, towers, anywhere up high to scout out the lay of the land in the wireless set-up process. He wears many hats here at Pasty Central, but on this day he had on a Yooper chook ('tuque' in French) to keep his ears warm, as the winds UP high can get pretty chilly. I bet you all thought Charlie sits behind a desk all day... now you know "the rest of the story".

By Lowell La Fave Little Beaver (Lowell) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 04:03 am:

I remember also wearing a CHOOK when I was a kid growing up in the North Country.

By Matt Karhu (Matt_k) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 08:31 am:

"Toque": Alternative spelling of "tuque", eh?

Mary says: Actually Matt, if you click on the link I provided above and here: Tuque (from Wikipedia), the spelling you posted, "Toque" is an alternate spelling mostly used in English, for the type of hat Charlie is wearing in the photos.
Quoted from Wikipedia: "The word is not etymologically related to the name of the chef's toque, although it is sometimes spelled "toque" instead of "tuque" (still pronounced /tuk/) by assimilation, or occasionally touque although the latter is a common misspelling and not considered a standard spelling by the Canadian Oxford Dictionary."

According to Wikipedia, "Tuque" is derived from the word "Toque", but the spelling with the "o" instead of the "u", refers to a chef's hat instead: Toque

Thus concludes today's lesson on "Everything you wanted to know about spelling chook, but were afraid to ask!" 8->

By Cindy Pihlaja Russell (Gone2long) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 08:33 am:

The complete ensemble included a chook, some choppers and a pair of swampers...oh, we were styling!

By David S. (Yooperdfs) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 08:49 am:

Swampers? I lived in Laurium as a kid in the 50's and don't remember the term 'swampers'. I do remember our snow boots as 'arctics'. Anyone else have such info?

By Grace M Wetton (Gmw) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 08:50 am:

I think most of us wore a "chook" at some time or another living up here in Yooperland.

By cjlevline (Cjlevline) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 08:58 am:

Wow..looks like your every day stocking cap to me!

By John Preisler (Jpreisler) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 09:02 am:

A Yooper on the roof. Sounds crazy, no? But here, in our little village of Calumet, you might say every one of us is a Yooper on the roof trying to scratch out a pleasant, simple tune without breaking his neck. It isn't easy. You may ask 'Why do we stay up there if it's so dangerous?' Well, we stay because Calumet is our home. And how do we keep our balance? That I can tell you in one word: Tradition!

By Cindy Pihlaja Russell (Gone2long) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 09:06 am:

My dad called some boots 'artics.' But in my mind, swampers are the big green rubber boots or else Sorel-type boots with the rubber bottom part and leather on the top.

By Cindy Pihlaja Russell (Gone2long) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 09:08 am:

I'm with you JPreisler, Charlie on the Roof also reminded me of Fiddler on the Roof.

By maija in Commerce Township (Maija) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 09:22 am:

Awesome to let us see Charlie in 'his' environment!

By Richard Johnson (Dick_fl) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 09:24 am:

I guess it depends on where you grew up Dave. Where I grew up in Marquette it was always chook, choppers, and swampers. But my cousin across town had another name for the same thing. Nevertheless, we would all go town town with our raha to buy them at Johnson's Sporting Goods.

By Eddyfitz (Eddyfitz) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 09:50 am:

As a youngster growing up in Hubbell we also wore a chook, choppers and swampers..We needed all that covering as we shoveled off the roof a few times a winter. On the cold winter mornings
(-20) before our long walk to St. Cecelia school, up hill for some(2blocks) would put our chooks in the oven of the wood stove before we headed out the door.

By Cindy Pihlaja Russell (Gone2long) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 10:18 am:

Yeah, we used to get dressed in front of the oven on winter mornings, with our clothes hung over the oven door to warm them up. Aaaahhh...the memories....

By eugenia r. thompson (Ert) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 10:56 am:

In parts of North Carolina and Virginia, they call a stocking hat a "toboggan". I really didn't understand what they were talking about as that was a term I knew for a type of sled.

By Tom (Tom) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 11:30 am:

I remember the same names as Cindy: chook, choppers and swampers. Here in GB I not met anyone yet who knew the term chook. (Haven't been here very long.)
Nice bits of information this morning.

By Richard A. Fields (Cherokeeyooper) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 12:05 pm:

In Escanaba, it was a Chook, choppers, and swampers or Sorels. Sorels were for the rich kids. Swampers were the green, felt lined boots that kept your feet warm to tempatures as low as 50 degrees. As an aside, I was born in LaJolla, Ca, but at the age of 7, my mom returned to her native Escanaba, which means so did I. Mom must have lost her senses in 60s California, because that winter my boots were rubber zip up overshoes, wool mittens, and one of those dreadful button up plaid cotten-wool coats. Of course I always lost one of the overshoes at school, my hands got wet and cold, and to this day I still suffer from the effects of frost bite.

Does Charlie have to go up on those severely pitched roofs like you find in Houghton and hancock?

By Richard L. Barclay (Notroll) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 12:55 pm:

When I first saw Charlie's screen name I thought he was referring to the leather mittens! I too grew up with chook, choppers and swampers in Big Bay. At home "artics" always refered to the 4 buckle or zippered rubber boots. I remember the folks at the Chassell Green Light Bar kicking off their swampers under the table and dancing in their stocking feet of a Friday or Saturday night to the Polka or Schodisch. Do they still?

By Brooke (Lovethekeweenaw) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 02:24 pm:

Seeing that makes me happy I have pasty dial up. I don't want Charlie falling off my scary roof he could get hurt and theres nothing to break his fall but the ground.
He really does multitask doesn't he.

By Cindy Pihlaja Russell (Gone2long) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 03:06 pm:

Yes, that's it...that's what my dad called 'artics' or 'arctics' was those zip up or buckle up kind. Who knew you could have a whole day's conversation about winter outer gear?

By Pauline (Yooperinpa) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 06:58 pm:

How about wearing bread bags in your boots to keep extra dry! My husband makes fun of me when I wear my chook! Keeps my ears warm! Thanks for the memories!

By Jerry Lutz (Jerrylutz) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 09:32 pm:

Anyone remember mittens that had a long string (made of yarn) that was sewed to both and you had it around your neck,then through both sleeves of your jacket? never would lose the mittens!

By Richard Wieber (Dickingrayling) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 10:09 pm:

I, too, remember swampers as beinf rubber bottoms with leather tops. They were working person's footwear. Arctics came two ways--zippered or buckled. Zippers were for town folks and buckles were for kids and country folks. One hazard was, if you didn't buckle them all the way up the buckles would sometime hook up and put you down.

By Ken ja Mimi from da UP (Kenjamimi) on Wednesday, May 21, 2008 - 11:32 pm:

I used a chook, choppers and swampers, too. But I never had the Sorrels until much later. When the liners of the choppers wore out Mom would take an old wool sweater and trace our hand outline on it, cut it out and sew it around the edges and Voila! new liners. When the rubber boots got old & cracked and leaky, I used bread bags to keep my feet dry. Wasn't much money for fancy stuff. :o) When I worked at the sawmill, we had to have safety toed Sorrels. And, of course, hard hats and safety glasses.

By Sandy G (Artessss) on Thursday, May 22, 2008 - 01:02 am:

I remember those woolen hats in KY as a kid and rubber boots that buckled to keep your feet dry. Thank goodness we moved from such terrible weather. I know most people "up there" don't mind it, but I got earaches so bad and colds one after the other. I do love your area in the summers though. No, I haven't been there but maybe one day. You have a nice group here chatting. Have a good night's sleep and day tomorrow.

By Deb S. (Usedtobeayooper) on Thursday, May 22, 2008 - 08:01 am:

Jerry, my comedian hubby, Mr. Deb, calls those idiot mittens. You'd have to know him to understand his humor. But he cracks us all up.

By Deb S. (Usedtobeayooper) on Thursday, May 22, 2008 - 08:02 am:

If there were more snow on the ground, I'd say Charlie was waiting and looking for Santy Claus!!!!

By Cindy Pihlaja Russell (Gone2long) on Thursday, May 22, 2008 - 03:25 pm:

We used to called that string on the mittens an idiot string too...cuz you could pull the mitten on one side and the person would hit themself in the head with the other hand. Hey, there wasn't that much to do UP there....

By Karen Kraft Buck (Karenbuck) on Friday, May 23, 2008 - 01:04 am:

My Dad had "Artics" to put on over his good shoes. Swampers were the shoe/boot all-in-one with the felt liner and they sure weren't Sorels! Everyone in the family had a chook and choppers. My kids were able to guess what a chook was but I think Grandma clued them in. ;-)

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