Milo Yield: Ideas for ag-themed Olympic contests
Whew, what a change in the weather. Yesterday was 99 degrees with a heat index near 110. Today, the temperature is 82 and it actually feels cool outdoors. That’s Kansas weather for you, but I welcome the change. Plus, we’re plenty wet, which is highly unusual for Kansas in August — more than 4-inches of rain lately.
I’ve been watching the Olympics as much as I can because I enjoy honest competition. The U.S. athletes are again making a great showing at the Olympics. Sometimes, given the low status of patriotism in the U.S. today, I wonder if I’m the only person who still gets a lump in my throat and misty eyes when the Star Spangled Banner is played at the Olympics and our athletes and fans chant “USA! USA! USA!” I know, I’m not the only one by far, but I think I’m in the minority.
Speaking of Olympic games, about every four years during the Olympics, I suggest that an international Aggie Olympic Games be staged somewhere in one of the breadbaskets of the world. Farmers and ranchers could compete in routine “aggie events” to see who in the world is best. The winners wouldn’t win gold, silver and bronze, but something like loaves of white bread, brown bread and pumpernickel for first, second and third. And I’d add a special “golden cow chip” prize for the person or team that finishes last.
Now, let me suggest some Aggie Olympics contests — both team and individual, men and women.
• Combine greasing and lubrication contest
• Water gap repair in waist-deep running water
• Cattle branding and vaccinating
• Cow prolapse repair
• Horse shoeing
• Corner post hole digging
• One-quarter mile of barbed wire fence building in rocky land
• ATV cross country racing to put out cattle salt blocks and minerals
• Sheep shearing
• Poultry catching
• Poultry plucking and butchering
• Tractor cab air-conditioning low-temperature contest
• Welding a 10-foot bead
• One-hundred yard dash through a muddy feedlot
• Biggest collection of free farm/ranch caps
• Tomato canning
• Timed race to clear a hay field of big round bales and stack them
• Straightest rows of corn planted without GPS
• Corn-husking contest (throwback to nostalgic/melancholy days)
• Gathering and loading five semi-trailers of feeder cattle
• Grain trailer backing — accuracy and speed
• Least noticeable or most original cattle-bidding technique
• Noxious weed spraying contest
• Apple picking contest — both speed and volume
• Dairy manure scraping contest with front-end loader
• Honeywagon races
• Heading and heeling contest
• Hog castrating contest — highest decibel squeal for tie-breaker
• Gravel road race to town for machine parts
• Longest and most original facial hair contest
• Tobacco spitting contest — distance, volume and accuracy divisions
• Most cluttered pickup truck cab by weight
• Feed mixing with a front-end loader
• Dirtiest, most ragged jeans or overalls/coveralls and shirt contest
• Small square hay bale stacking contest.
• Sickle-sharpening contest
• Removing header and loading combine on a trailer
• Coyote sharp-shooter competition
• Pond fishing competition
• New-calf catching and ear-tagging contest
• Horse bridling and saddling contest
• Cattle weight guessing accuracy contest
• And, last but not least, determine a world-champion liar — divisions for weather, crop yields, cattle weights and grandchildren accomplishments
This morning I was heading to town when I saw a homeless man walking along the highway shoulder. I stopped and picked him up and I asked him how he ended up homeless.
He said, “Up until last week, I still had it all — a cook, my clothes were washed and pressed, roof over my head, television, internet, workout room, swimming pool, library, free educational classes.”
“What happened,” I asked him. “Drugs? Alcohol? Divorce.”
“Nope,” he replied, “I got paroled.”
I think that object lesson is enuf for this week. Take time to have a good time and make it a good ‘un. ❖
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