The weather forecast has said it was going to be minus double-digits without the wind chill.

The wind was blowing straight in from Freizinyourbolloxov, a small town city near Siberia. This shouldn’t be confused with Freesinyurteetzof which, as every schoolchild knows, is in Austria.

With the wind, that minus double digit felt at least twice as cold.

Noel Coward once noted that the midday sun was reserved for mad dogs and Englishmen.

Shane Culver similarly observed, “Only an asshole would go out in weather like this.” Which was all he could think about as he trudged behind his employer, Brandon, “The Asshole” Rodgers – photographer.

Brandon was holding forth.

“It’s about the unity of things. One thing is linked to similar things of the same kind.”

“And…this is why we’re on here in this freezing cold?”

“Yes! Because these photographs will touch people at a deeper place. They will feel the connection between these images and the other images. But it’s more than that. It’s about the actual image. And the meaning behind that.”

Shane wasn’t going to encourage Brandon and just trudged on in silence, hoping that he’d shut up.

Brandon, however, wasn’t running on Shane’s hopes.

“It’s about sheds. Barns. Stables. Farmyard buildings in general. That’s where all our hopes and prayers live – don’t you see?”

“Ah…not really, Brandon. Where are you going with this? And, why today?”

“Because life does not wait for those who will not live it. We must strike today, while the iron is hot!”

“At least something is,”  mumbled Shane. And then, louder, “So – why sheds, then?”

“It’s where everything happened! The Nativity: Christ, in the shed, at Christmas – the birth of the Son of God!”

“Yeah – so.. One thing, then.”

“Father Christmas has Reindeer! They must sleep somewhere. And where?”

“I’m guessing a stable.”

Brandon spun round, almost lost his balance, righted himself and pointed. “RIGHT! See! It’s all Stables! And now we have cars in garages” – he said it as if the word was dirty in his mouth – “our lives have lost meaning! By taking photos of stables. Of Shed and Barns, WE can give people back that meaning.”

The walked on in silence for a while, and then Brandon stopped, suddenly.

“HERE! My Masterpiece awaits.”

Shane looked up. It wasn’t all that. And he found that he wasn’t witness to a great spiritual reawakening.

The pair of them set up Brandon’s equipment and he started snapping. Different angles. Different lighting.

“So…are you saying that Farmers are the new Saviours of Mankind?”

Even through all of the layers around Brandon’s face, Shane knew he looked aghast. “No blaspheming on the shoot, Shane.”

Three hours later, after the Nativity photos, but before the reindeer could arrive, the cold proved too much, and it was only Shane’s good reception that called in the rescue team.

This is how ideas grow.

If you put them in the minds of fools.


Amy O’Connor provided today’s photo. Read about her here

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