Milo Yield: Laugh Tracks in the Dust 4-18-11
April 18, 2011
I love to tell mishap stories about friends and acquaintances, so it’s only fair to them that I also tell the mishap stories that I inflict on myself – like the one I did recently when recycling a little dab of scrap metal to the dealer in Emporia.
I’d accumulated a jag of rusty woven wire I’d pulled from some ancient, half-buried hog fences that were here on Damphewmore Acres when I bought it. I rolled it up, squashed it as best I could with the tractor loader, and strapped it on my flatbed trailer.
I also had a half-barrel of scrap metal ranging from rusty nails, small pieces of farm equipment and horse-drawn equipment I’d unearthed with my tiller, and flattened tin and aluminum cans. The half-barrel probably weighed around 80 pounds.
Well, I got everything loaded on the trailer and in the bed of my old beater 1990 Ford F250 pickup and headed for the scrap metal yard. When I got there, I weighed in and a yardman directed me to one place to unload the scrap metal and another to unload the old wire.
I pulled up to the first stop, dropped the tailgate on the pickup and tried to reach over the bed and pull the half-barrel of scrap to the back of the tailgate so I could unload it. It wuz too heavy, so I climbed into the pickup and pushed the half-barrel onto the tailgate.
But, when I attempted to step off the tailgate onto the V-shaped tongue of the trailer, my foot slipped and before I could even cuss I found my ample butt and gut wedged into the V of the wagon tongue with legs sticking out one side and up to my armpits on the other.
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I’m sure I looked like a helpless human turtle caught on his back. It must have looked funny because one of the yardmen up high in the air in the cab of a big grappling hook wuz having himself a good laugh at my expense.
I finally got my right arm up on the truck tailgate and wuz able to extricate myself from my predicament with no more damage than a scrape on my right ribs and a bruise on my ego.
After I unloaded the woven wire, I wuz surprised to have earned $26.50 from my meager 300-pound load of scrap. I figgered it would be worth about $10.
Oh, well, the money came in handy and I’m sure the Chinese will be happy to have the scrap metal to re-manufacture and sell it back to me sometime in the future when I buy fencing materials.
Spring is when farmers and ranchers everywhere get the urge to burn the old grass in their pastures. This week they’re burning everywhere in the Flint Hills.
However, it wuz a couple weeks ago when my Iowa sheep-shearing buddy, ol’ Nick deHyde, decided it wuz time to burn off his back sheep pasture. Well, the way he told the story to me, he had the fire well under control until the wind shifted.
In a matter of moments, the fire wuz streaking down a fence line and onto his neighbor’s land. Nick couldn’t put it out by hand, so he ran to his tractor and blade, cut the fence to get through, and got all the fire scraped out except the part in the fence line.
Nick sez he wuz beating the fire with a wet gunny sack, dodging to both sides of the fire to keep from choking to death on the smoke, when he felt his feet getting hot in his cowboy boots. In fact, his feet got so hot, he had to stop fighting fire and take his boots off to cool off his feet.
After a minute or so, he put his boots back on and finally got the fire under control. It wuzn’t until then that he realized how much his right little toe wuz hurting. Upon closer examination, he found a huge, watery, painful blister on the end and outside of his little toe.
Nick wryly wound up his story by telling me, “Guess the fire Gods wanted to send me a message about fire safety that I won’t forget for a couple of weeks.”
I’ve got some good Colorado e-mail buddies who sent me a very informative e-mail last week. They said they finally figured out why I am so “full-figured!”
They told me when I wash and condition my hair in the shower the next morning, I should take time to read the label on my shampoo bottle. I did what they said and I am in shock! The shampoo I use in the shower says just as plain as day “for extra volume and body”! Seriously, why haven’t I noticed this before?
Now I’ve started using “Dawn” dish soap for my shower shampoo. It says right on the bottle label, “dissolves fat that is otherwise difficult to remove.” In no time at all, I’ll be skinny again. It pays to read product labels my friends!
Well, I’ll end this column by announcing my grassroots campaign to get Congress to pass a law designating a new national flower. I’m advocating for the new national flower to be the Cost-of-Living Rose!
Have a good ‘un.