A few column-free weeks | TheFencePost.com

A few column-free weeks

I’m writing this column in early May and you’ll be reading it at the end of the month or early June. I needed time off “column-free” so I can peacefully pursue work, play, and travel for a few weeks.


For a good evening’s entertainment of old-fashioned, but never out of style, country music, ol’ Nevah and I recently attended a concert by Dwight Yoakum at the grand ol’ Granada Theater in Emporia, Kan.

Mr. Yoakum didn’t disappoint and put on an amazing performance, but just like all other live concerts, the band wuz so loud that it drowned out Dwight’s lyrics. His concert was based on the Bakersfield sound, the hard-thumping country music that made that California city famous.

In addition to doing almost all his own well-known songs, Yoakum did a nod to his fellow compatriots of the Bakersfield sound — Merle Haggard and Buck Owens — and sang a few of their songs and the band sounded just like the originals. Plus, just to emphasize his versatility, Yoakum threw in a song or two from Johnny Cash, with the trademark Cash-band sound authentically reproduced.

All in all, a few bucks well spent.


Right now, my gardens look great. But after I’m through traveling at the end of the month, the weeds will get a two-week jump on me. But, still, the recent small showers have got the spuds, sweet corn, tomatoes, peppers, peas, green beans, onions, radishes, spinach and carrots looking good.

I’ve got my sweet potato bed ready for planting as soon as I can find transplants to buy. I’ll also probably sow a second planting of sweet corn.

I ate my first fresh radish just this noon. Yum!

Also, an ol’ Cochin hen is due to hatch 10 eggs on Sunday or Monday. If she pulls off a successful hatch, I’ve got the brooder house ready for the fowl youngsters.


A few weeks ago, I mentioned an Iowa sheep that killed itself by climbing into a wind-generator blade. Well, I need to add the wooly exploits of a dumb Missouri sheep — although at this date, it’s still living.

My Missouri buddy, ol’ Canby Handy, takes care of his son-in-law’s Suffolk flock when the SOL is traveling. Last week, Canby wuz on hand when the last ewe lamb in the flock gave birth to a spindly lamb. But, the lamb got up and nursed normally, so Canby thought his troubles were over.

Alas, the next evening when he arrived to do chores, he noticed the mother ewe acting erratically — going back and forth toward the electric fence, with a loud bleat every now and then. Well, when he arrived at the scene, he found the baby lamb had blundered into a confined space and made contact with the electric fence. It couldn’t get loose, and he figgered the lamb had to be “electrified” for at least a few minutes.

Canby reached in to try and extricate the lamb and got the shock of his day. Knocked him on his keister. So, he then turned off the electric fence and got the lamb loose. It wuz much the worse for wear and tear, but it did go to its mother and nurse. It wuz about that time that Canby realized that the mother ewe had also gotten the shock of her life every time she tried to sniff her poor electrified lamb.

The lamb may live or it may die, but whatever happens, it just proves that sheep have discovered multiple, weird ways to get into trouble.


My fishing buddy from New Mexico, ol’ Albie Kirky, will arrive in three days for a bit of fishing. We might be joined by fellow fishermen Claude Hopper and Mocephus. There’s a slim chance of rain those days and I hope we get rained out and have to play cards. I’ll give a report in a few weeks.


Our grandson is graduating from my alma mater, Bea Wilder U., this weekend. That’s two grandchildren who’ve matriculated with another in line next year. I admit, it makes me proud to see our grandkids reach meaningful milestones on their life’s journey.


Have you ever noticed that the name Black Angus is both singular and plural. You can have a single Black Angus bull or cow or a herd of Black Angus. It’s not that way with Hereford, Shorthorn, Limousine, Simmental or Scotch Highlander. It takes an “s” on the end to make them plural, but not Black Angus.


Coloradoan Jay Esse writes: “I asked my family doctor if diet patches really work. He told me they did if you put them over your mouth.”

“At my age, Milo, I’m still playing with a full deck. I just shuffle a lot slower.”

“I haven’t lost all my marbles yet, but at my age, I’m definitely starting to think there’s a hole in the marble bag.”

“I think the thermos bottle is one of the greatest inventions ever. In the winter it keeps my coffee hot and in the summer it keeps my iced tea cool. How does it know?”

“Old age must be hereditary. My grandparents got old. Eventually my parents got old. And now I’m getting old, too.”

Jay’s words will have to suffice for this week’s wisdom. Have a good ‘un.


Dwindling farm and ranch land


American Farmland Trust’s Farms Under Threat research has found that land used to produce food in the U.S. is increasingly being used to grow cities and residential areas.

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