Milo Yield: Laugh Tracks in the Dust 9-2-13

Milo Yield
Damphewmore Acres, Kan.

I’m not a chronic complainer, but I do try to chronicle the things that are happening around me. What’s happened this summer is six weeks of extremely dry and hot weather, followed by a month of monsoon rains and unseasonably cool weather, and now that is being followed up by clear, warm weather and a grasshopper invasion.

So far, the grasshopper damage here at Damphewmore Acres is minimal and the chicken flock is gorging itself daily with protein-rich grasshoppers and doing a good job of keeping the hoppers from doing damage to what’s left of our garden after the flooding. The grasshopper abundance is even cutting into the cost of the grain and lay mash I’m having to purchase.

However, some of my friends without a scavenging chicken flock are having their landscaping and yards decimated by the grasshoppers. To date, the hopper infestation is causing only minor damage to crop fields, although one friend says the hoppers have devoured a wide swath around his alfalfa field.

One benefit of the grasshoppers is that the wild birds — quail, prairie chickens, wild turkeys and doves — that survived the flooding will have easy pickings until after frost.


A feud developed between the pastor of a rural church, the Reverend Firen Brimstone, and the church’s choir director, Melody Flatt.

The first hint of public trouble came when Pastor Brimstone preached his sermon on the topic of “dedicating yourselves to service” and the choir director Ms. Flatt responded by directing the congregation to sing the hymn, “I Shall Not Be Moved.”

Trying to believe it was a coincidence, the pastor put the incident behind him. But, the next Sunday he preached on the topic of “generous and selfless giving.” Afterwards, the choir squirmed as the director led them in the hymn, “Jesus Paid It All.”

By this time, the pastor was losing his temper and the congregation could tell the tension between the two protagonists was building. Through the next week it was the topic of much gossiping amongst the church members.

As a consequence of the elevating squabble, the next Sunday morning attendance swelled because everyone wanted to see how the confrontation played out. To no one’s surprise, the Rev. Brimstone preached a loud and heartfelt sermon on the topic: “The sins of gossiping.” Equally not surprising, choir director Flatt selected the hymn: “I Love To Tell The Story?”

After that slap to his reputation, there was no turning back. The following Sunday Rev. Brimstone told the congregation that unless something changed, he was considering resignation. The entire church gasped when the choir director led them in the hymn “Why Not Tonight?”

Truthfully, no one was surprised when the pastor resigned a week later, explaining that Jesus had led him there and Jesus was leading him away. The choir director could not resist getting in the last word. Her hymn selection was “What A Friend We Have In Jesus.”


Having trouble with the hard drive crashing on your computer? Are you unable to back up all your computer files? Have you lost material from your computer files?

Well, an informed reader tells me she had all those problems on her computer, but got them all solved for $199.

Here’s how:

She found out about a new program offered by the National Security Agency called “We’ve Got Your Stuff.” She logged on to the program website and found the NSA had a backup of all her files and she downloaded them for only $199.

But, she added, if she’d not been a member of the Tea Party, the service was free.


An attentive, helpful reader recently sent me a gardening tip. He’d read about all my tomato plants suffering from the wilt and said he knew how to perk up my tomatoes

He told me to dissolve a Viagra pill in Miracle Gro and water and pour that solution on my tomato plants. I did and sure enuf, within minutes my tomatoes were resuscitated. I thought the tomato wilt problem wuz over, but sadly, they wilted again after four hours. Maybe I need to consider continual drip irrigation of that magical formula for my tomatoes.


Well, I started this column about grasshoppers and nature, so I might as well end it the same way with words of wisdom about them. G. Tyler Miller, Jr., said, “One hundred trout are needed to support one man for a year. The trout, in turn, must consume 90,000 frogs, that must consume 27 million grasshoppers that live off of 1,000 tons of grass.” And, American poet Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “When Nature has work to be done, she creates a genius to do it.”

Well said, men.

Have a good ’un. ❖