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Adapting to the times

Laugh Tracks in the Dust
Milo Yield
Damphewmore Acres, Kan.

The ol’ coronavirus pandemic is making all of us do things a little differently. One way is the way we’re spending dirty ol’ cash.

I looked at my billfold laying on top of the counter yesterday and realized that I had not opened it to spend a single dollar bill in more than three weeks. The minimal times that I did go to town, I used my credit card to pay for the goods, not cash. Heck, greenbacks in my possession may get moldy before I get to spend them.

•••

Ol’ Nevah and I braved the CV gauntlet — and Kansas governor’s stay-at-home edict — yesterday and went 60 miles to visit our new great-grandson on his one-week birthday. The baby is doing great and we didn’t get arrested for traveling. So, all in all, it wuz a fine day.

•••

I see, sadly, that we’ve lost another of country music’s Grand Dames. Last week, Jan Howard undoubtedly rode on musical notes on her way to her Great Reward. She was in her 80s and had spent her entire life immersed in the country music industry. RIP.

•••

The rebellious teens of today have turned to vaping as their preferred way to show the world how independent they’ve become. It’s sad, because they will eventually pay the piper for their vaping escapade.

Seeing kids vaping reminds me of something that happened back in my callow-youth teens. I somehow got possession of a pack of cowboy-tough Marlboro’s and sneaked out behind our barn to partake of my first taste of tobacco sin.

I lit up and wuz puffing away, while the smoke drifted and wafted on the wind around the corner of the barn — where it wuz sniffed by my dear ol’ Dad, Czar E. Yield. Upon smelling my Marlboro smoke, he followed his nose right to me. After giving me a no-smoking lecture, he whupped out his belt and proceeded to make his anti-smoking lecture sink in.

Let me tell you, folks. By the time he got done, I was through with cigarettes. I never wanted to have anything to do with smoking for the rest of my life.

I admit, when it happened, I was pretty peeved at ol’ Czar for what happened. But, after I thought about it objectively for awhile, I was really thankful.

No, I wasn’t thankful that he’d taught me about the dangers of smoking. I was thankful and happy that he didn’t catch me out behind the barn with my first girlfriend. I wanted to find out about their dangers for myself.

•••

I received my U.S. Census form recently and, as a dutiful citizen, I filled it out. As I did so, I recalled the fun I had with the last Census of Agriculture forms.

I still recall the answers I gave to some of those ag census questions.

Q: What kind of corn and soybeans to you produce?

A: Mostly weedy and widely spaced.

Q. What kind of hay do you produce?

A. Mostly moldy and leafless.

Q. Have you participated in any government farm programs?

A. No, but I’d be perfect for a role in a farm program that starred an impoverished, henpecked farmer.

Q. Have you suffered any losses on your farm because of bad weather?

A. Yes, I lost a log chain down a crack in the Earth. I lost a new pair of gum boots in the mud in the cowlot. And, I lost a new straw hat in a dust devil.

Q. What forms of fertilizer do you use on your farm?

A. Cow manure comes in patty form. Horse manure comes in big pellet form. Sheep manure comes in small pellet farm. And I don’t think pig and chicken manure has any particular form at all — it’s freelance fertilizer.

Q. Have you used AI on your farm?

A. Yep. All I operate with are Antiquated Implements.

Q. Have you used new genetics on the livestock on your farm?

A. Sure have. Last time I repopulated my swine herd, 50 percent of the gilts from those genetics had multiple births.

Q. What is the most common cattle operation on your farm?

A. Castration and dehorning.

Q. Do you have a smoke detector?

A. No, but I use a Gomer bull to detect cows in estrous.

Q. What do you do to build soil fertility on your farm?

A. I buy only “mud-ball” feeder cattle during the winter carrying at least 200 pounds of mud and manure caked on their hair and tail. When they shed in the spring, they deliver a new layer of fertile soil to my farm.

Q. Have you ever participated in the CRP program?

A. I didn’t know USDA had a Cattlemens’ Retirement Program. Sign up?

•••

Wise words from the coronaviruscorona virus circuit:

“My garbage man stuck a pamphlet for AA on my recycling bin. Judgmental %^$&. Mind your own business.”

“My wife is taking up gardening, but she’s digging a hole six foot long, three feet wide and six feet deep. What’s she gonna plant in that?”

Have a good ‘un. ❖


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