The Story of a Wagon
By L. H. (Uncle Howard) Nutting
(THE CHIROPRACTOR, A Monthly Journal, Vol. 1, No. 2, January,1905 (107 years ago). Published by
The Palmer School of Chiropractic.)
Last Saturday,the writer saw an incident on Main street, Davenport, Iowa, which caused much ill humor, amusement, and some instruction to the crowd that witnessed it. Human nature, the quality of which depends upon education, was shown by each one presenting his peculiar idea of the situation and his suggestions. Main street is paved with brick and is quite steep between Sixth and Eighth. A crowd of idle men had gathered on this street to watch a stalled team. I, of course, joined them. The horses were once full of life and vigor, but now they are thin of flesh, showing want of care and lack of ambition. They were hitched to a good wagon, which contained a heavy load. They had gotten half way up the hill, but could go no farther. The driver did not know what course to pursue. Several of the bystanders were eager to assist him with their counsel. Their varied suggestions only served to confuse him. The reader will notice closely the advice given, for it will be made use of hereafter.
The first instruction was to apply the whip, which was used unsparingly. It excited and aroused what little energy they had left, but only worried them without any gain. The next order given and acted upon was to back them down the hill so as to give them a new start. This was tried, with the result that they were not able to make as far up the grade as before. A professional looking man then said, “Blindfold the horses, shake the wagon, throw something heavy on the pavement, make them believe that you have unloaded. If they think the wagon is empty, they will pull it up the hill easily.” But try as hard as they might, they could not pull the load.
The next man to offer advice was a clerk from a nearby drug store. He thought that the axles and heels were tired instead of the horses. A supply of oil was secured and applied to the axles and heels plentifully, which seemed to make the wagon more inclined to slide down the hill.
Then there appeared in the front of the crowd a seemingly wise fellow. He looked as though he was a graduate from some college or a president of some hospital board. He argued the case as follows: “No team on earth can pull that load, there is too much wagon; make it as light as possible, take off the spring seat, take out the end gate and all the loose rods, saw out half the spokes for they are crowding each other, take off the tires, for they only serve to make extra weight; the fewer pieces you have in the wagon the more easily it will move.”
But fortunately, before the well-dressed man’s advice was put in force, there appeared a practical farmer who took in the situation at a glance. He spoke in a mild tone, but what he said carried force and was convincing. He said, “Let that wagon remain whole, not one piece of it can be spared at this time when it is so loaded. Wipe off that surplus oil, throw the whip in the gutter, cease to blindfold the horses.” When this was done, he calmly said to the driver, “NOW TAKE OFF THE BRAKE.” It was released. The team made the top of the hill with the usual speed and ease. The farmer was heard to say, “That is easy to do when you know how.” The crowd dispersed, being benefitted more or less by the experience.
Author's note: This story was originally titled "The Story of Take off the Brake" which is found in the Green Books Vol. 27 "History Repeats." I thought the title was a bit too much forshadowing and didn't engage the reader as much. I have to say tho (sp), I spent the whole story a bit frustrated knowing how it was going to go. Go back and re-read it and see if you feel the same way.
When I talk to people about their health I occationaly feel like screaming "Take off the brake!" I usually opt for something more professional like "I think we can agree that you body is designed to be healthy and the way your body coordinates health is throught the nervous system. We, at Holloway Family Chiropractic, work to remove the intereference with the expression of health." I often get a blank look and a short pause followed by further explaination of how they tried "everything" and they "haven't figured it out yet". Total face-palm.
**As I finished writing this post an elderly gentleman limped into my office. Read about it here**