Wanted: New Ice Man

Wanted: New Ice Man
Barbara Lawlor

After a week of vitriolic emails, Trygve Bauge and Bo Shaffer are splitting up. Bauge is the son of Aud Morstol, the daughter of Bredo Morstol, whose frozen body has been stored in a Tuff Shed in the Big Springs subdivision of Nederland since 1995. Bo is the person, known as the Ice Man, who has been delivering dry ice to the Tuff Shed to keep Bredo’s cryogenically frozen body frozen until the time his cells would be thawed and cloned.
This unusual situation resulted in the town’s largest event, The Frozen Dead Guy Days Festival, and has put Nederland on the zany map, but for most of the year, Bo has delivered the ice. Bredo has slumbered, and residents kind of ignore him until March of every year.
It seems that both men have become irritated with each other over a lack of communication, and now Trygve has sent out a notice that he is looking for a new person to deliver ice to the frozen dead guy. He emailed Bo saying he hadn’t heard from him since March 31 and was worried about the condition of his grandfather.
He is currently looking for someone with a 4-wheel drive truck, an electronic camera and a home computer to add dry ice once every four weeks, from now and until Bredo is transferred elsewhere. Trygve said he is saving his money to send Bredo to a cryogenic laboratory in 2015. In the meantime, he needs to keep his grandpa on ice.
Bo has been receiving $800 for each dry ice run, of which about $500 has gone to buy the dry ice and $300 has gone to Bo.
Trygve reports that dry ice typically costs less than 30 cents a pound, so 1,600 pounds would cost less than $475. He explained that the job takes about four hours: one and a half hours to fetch the dry ice and drive it to Nederland, one hour to unload it and seal the dry ice box, and one hour to drive home, unless one lives in Nederland. The job also includes half an hour to send Trygve a five-line report by e-mail and post this to a web site or Facebook site, preferably with a dated picture of the dry ice freight bill and the dry ice box at the site.
The report has to state the day of the dry ice delivery, how much dry ice was added and in what form, blocks or pellets, where this was bought, from what company and for what price. The freight bill will answer all those three questions, he said.
He also wants to know how much dry ice was left before more was added and when the next dry ice run is scheduled. Typically dry ice runs will be on Wednesdays every 4 weeks, and the dry ice will come in huge insulated containers, that can be forklifted onto the pickup truck.
The money will be wired to the dry ice deliverer at least a week up front of each dry ice run. An account with one of the dry ice companies could be set up, paying this directly for the dry ice up front every half year or so and paying the delivery person just for the delivery and reporting every four weeks.
The person who takes the job will also have the opportunity of giving tours to the Tuff Shed and hosting Bredo’s Birthday Party. Trygve said that when the new ice man is hired, the dry ice box will have to be opened to document Bredo’s condition, and he hopes it will take place on a sub-zero day with lots of available dry ice.
He said the time has come to replace Bo. “Getting timely reports out of Bo has been a struggle for years. Even five-line e-mail reports have been hard to get him to send, and that is a situation that invites disasters by not leaving me enough time to save the situation in case of real emergencies.
‚ÄúThus I am trying to find a replacement that will be sending me prompt reports after each dry ice run until we can afford to move Bredo to liquid nitrogen again.” Bredo said he has contacted the Cryonic Institute in Michigan as a potential new site for his grandfather’s remains.
Although Trygve said Bo quit on Sept. 14, Bo said he only threatened to quit. He delivered his last load of dry ice on Sept. 19, so Bredo is good for another month. He said that supplying the Tuff Shed with dry ice and working with Trygve has been difficult, that gas and ice prices have gone up and he has taken a cut in pay.
“Eighteen years of faithful service means nothing,” he said.
Having Bredo ensconced in Nederland has been the basis for the Frozen Dead Guy Festival. Will it continue to be successful if he is moved? Organizers say that the festival has taken on a life of its own and that the coffin races, the polar plunge, the myriad winter events and the weekend party won’t be affected by the absence of a coffin with nefarious remains embedded in iffy dry ice.
Then again, in one of Bo’s emails to Trygve, he accuses the Norwegian of perpetuating a joke upon the community and he doesn’t want to continue having a part in it.
The Frozen Dead Guy saga will never die. It will just melt away someday. If interested in the position please email trygve.bauge@getmail.no.