I’ve been a bum. Oh, I put the fencer on the hot wire I’d erected around the buildings over on the west farm. I placed feed and water in front of the lame cow. I’m even cutting and splitting wood for the heat in the house. A few truck loads so far. But that’s about all I’ve done. Catch up on sleep, does that count? I don’t seem to be able to stay awake after dark anymore. I seem to wake up with the dawn even if I’ve promised myself to sleep in once in a while. Which helps with keeping the home fires burning. I know gas, oil, and LP are all cheaper this year but they don’t grow on trees. Not immediately at least. Wood doesn’t grow on trees either, trees grow on wood. It’s not wood until it’s swallowed by tree. Besides, I’m a creature of habit. I love the feeling of wood heat radiating into my tired old bones. So even when I’m lazy I don’t seem to get any time off. Such it is when we’re convinced there’s things we need. I’ve been a bum but it’s been a full time job. That’s life.

What I haven’t been doing is writing. Not just here on the blog I haven’t scribbled anything down anywhere. It’s not that things haven’t popped into my head it’s just that they’ve left before I’ve felt compelled to jot them down. They maybe weren’t ready for prime time. They must need more time in the caldron, stirring and swirling around until they reach escape velocity. Waiting for the born on date. So in the mean time I’m just living. Eating, drinking, and breathing. Sleeping deep dreamless sleep and waking up rested. Glad just to wake up in a warm house on a cold day. Posting this here on the blog only because I feel guilty for not posting in a week. You’d think with only one day to go in the year I’d have something to say about it. I don’t.  ’14, ’15, ’16 I really couldn’t care less. Good economy, bad economy; good weather, bad weather; talking points I’m not interested in talking about. Maybe I’ll find some winter music. Maybe I’ll take a nap.




Where’s The Beef Rally?

Wave five and counting …….

Deflation is alive and well. Wealth is evaporating faster than alcohol in a gas tank. Whoops, I mean …….

I thought they were only going to pick on the grain farmers. Now I see all producers are going to feel the pain. If you believe the hype demand is down, supply is up. Everywhere. Consumers are going to have a windfall. Even the one in six on food stamps. Their government won’t have to pay as much to provide. That should help the confidence. Congress will probably find a way to tax it. The windfall that is. Then they will spend it five times over. Surely there’s a war or two to start somewhere or another. Maybe even start two wars in the same place. Whatever it takes to buy a little more time.

Whatever it takes to keep us quiet and in line. Don’t even try to protest because they have processional rioters that are shipped in to drum up martial law. Then the police will have to write more tickets to pay for it. It’s going to take one and a half million dollars in new tickets to help pay for the unrest in Ferguson, Missouri. According to the police force’s budget crunchers. So it’s shut up or pay up here in the land of the free lunch. Never mind that that free lunch kills you. It’s a softer kill than the cops provide. Much less drama too. Doctors don’t make house calls any more but they’ll still visit your deathbed.

Hospice, anyone?



Two Putts Back

What a deal!

The cattle are moved. All but one. She was limping so we left her here at home. The rest were run over to the west farm. I had one daughter come home from school early and two daughters stop by home to help watch the driveways and building sites along the way without fences. The great cattle drive west went off without a hitch. It was close a couple times but we got em moved. Then I spent the rest of that day building the hot wire fence surrounding the three buildings and the hay off of that farm’s headlands and waterways. I still need to add the fencer. As long as there’s no snow and plenty to eat the cows won’t bother the not yet hot fence. That’s the theory anyway.

The warm foggy weather has been replaced with cold and windy weather. Winter is back. Just in time for winter too. Sunday is the first official day of winter. The actual first day was well over a month ago. I’ve picked over half my corn since then. The second half. I was half done when it struck. I’ve never used so much treated fuel to harvest in my life. I have picked with snow on the ground before but never with as long of a cold snap as this year. Nor as early. This past week or so of warm weather was much needed for our mental health. Cabin fever in December is not a good thing. Running the furnace eight months a year isn’t a good thing either. I don’t care how cheap fuel is getting. I really don’t since I burn wood. But I have to let the forest catch up.

I fixed the drain on the upstairs shower/tub but I broke the water main doing it. I had to reach around the main to get to the drain pipe and I must have leaned into it and broke a sweat copper fitting. One of my favorite jobs to do, sweat copper fitting soldering. Getting that solder to flow correctly into the seam is tricky work when it works. I’ve seen enough certified plumbers get leaks to know I’m very fortunate when I get one to stick right the first try. But necessity is a tough taskmaster so behind the eight ball usually works better out of necessity. Sooner or later. Having all the water out of the pipe and having your surfaces properly prepared including flux is the best tip I could give. Other than that make the solder flow back to the heat from the opposite side of the fitting is all I know. Maybe that’s all you need to know.

One putt forward. Two putts back.





Post & Beam

I’ll write a post then go on You Tube and get a link so you can beam it into your television. I mean computer. I mean telephone. I mean wrist TV. Before I run too far astray what I’m getting at is this is a post and beam construction. Nothing new on the Plains. Nothing new under the sun. Nothing old under the sun if I get my way. That sun’s so hard on paint it’ll make new seem old in no time whatsoever. It’s best to keep everything not growing green out from under the sun. Once it’s made it goes in the shade. Even if it was made in the shade like lemonade. Or whoopee wearing nothing but the shade.

I parked the 1460 in the shade of the post and beam construction we here at the home place call the lower barn. It sits about a bucket’s throw down the hill from the upper barn. Years ago I had taken a small one bent hay loft out of the south middle section and opened up the north end of the center section and built doors to create a machine shed to store machinery. Then I started storing hay outside in large round bales wrapped in plastic mesh. Progress? The hay is fed up before it goes rotten and the machinery is stored out of the sun and wind and rain and ice and snow. I’ll call it progress. I still have a few hundred small square hay bales stored in the side sections that give a home to coons and such. Still nothing new.

I have one piece left to get tucked away in it’s barn. The 1440 with the corn head is parked over south of the white shed on the west farm. I brought it “home” but didn’t have time yet to take off the end snoot from the corn head so it will fit in the barn, raising it’s resale value. Maybe today. We are suppose to move cattle to that farm from home tomorrow. Better get her buttoned up. And battened down. It’s about a two mile drive west to the west farm past seven building sites that mostly don’t have a road fence. Not to mention the neighbor’s herds. It takes quite a crew to drive the cattle on the road. So I have to schedule it. I hate schedules. Until the plan comes together.

Well that’s the plan. Now I have to post and beam.




Cool was back in the news the last little while. That’s Country Of Origin Labeling not the temperatures. (Though temps are starting to straiten out after a month of February in November. We went directly from summer into winter. No fall.) It sounds like Mexico and Canada are pissed because America is going to tell their consumers where the meat comes from. Canada and Mexico don’t want anybody to know that their eating meat from those two countries. It makes me wonder what’s wrong with their meat to make them want to hide amongst our meat to get it sold. They want a ransom if we label.

Then there’s Monsanto. They don’t seem to want anybody to know their eating Monsanto’s products. Making everyone wonder what’s wrong with what they’re peddling. Why spend millions fighting label laws so you can hide your products amongst non GMO products. If the corporations get their way and get the TPP and other similar trade deals rammed through consumers will have to pay the corpses for lost sales revenue should they try to differentiate products on the shelves. A kind of “Let us sell it or else!” ransom that’s sure to please the dead bastards.

If we are smart we will label away and pay the damned ransoms. Maybe we could hide the ransom in gun sales and laundered drug sales like we did back in the eighties when we busy “not negotiating” with the Arabian terrorists and “not funding” the Contras of central America. We would consider it a knowledge fee. A truth tariff. A lot cheaper in the long run instead of waiting for the medical costs to show up after destroying our health. A stitch in time. For a change. Label me, label you.

You can label me Cocreator Ten.

Amongst other things.