We are the second family to ever own the house that we live in. It was built in 1965, and immediately occupied by a young couple who lived in it for 35 years before they sold it to us. He was quite a handyman, and made lots of improvements over the years. And one thing that we've found out -- he built things to last.
So, today we decided to dig up the flagpole. It was apparently put up in 1967 (there was a penny in the concrete footing) and in those 39 years, a very tall spruce tree has grown up in front of it. So even if we had a flag, no one would be able to see it. So we thought we'd just dig that puppy up.
We dug around that thing. The footing was deeper than we thought. We dug some more. Still couldn't find the bottom. We dug some more. We swayed it back and forth. We dug. We wiggled it. The footing was a good four feet deep, and about nine inches in diameter. When we finally got it more or less loose, we couldn't lift the thing. So I took a sledgehammer and knocked off some of the concrete. Still couldn't lift it. Knocked off some more. Still couldn't lift it. Knocked off some more, until we were so far down we couldn't swing a good sledgehammer. Still couldn't lift it. So we took a hacksaw and cut the damn thing off. (This was easier than it sounds; we just had to make a little cut, and then it twisted off.) Finally, we simply buried what remained of the footing.
Here's the hole we dug. That's a yardstick, for perspective.
And here is the vanquished beast. Note the twist at the far end. That's the end that was in the footing.
Jane Jacobs’ 100th Birthday
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