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Sow’s Ear

Hornet ranching

May 10, 2019

Ranchers Zeke and Clyde were commiserating about the sad state of raising food, especially the four-footed kind. Zeke: “Ya know, these days we raise sheep and cattle so wolves, coyotes and bears have somethin’ to...


Making cottage cheese

April 19, 2019

Do you like cheese? Think how smug you’ll feel when you mention you make your own cottage cheese. The following is what I remember from years ago. Start by acquiring a batch of skim milk....


At the Old AgeHoopla Ball

April 12, 2019

First, a big fat thank you to all the readers of this column over the years. Lately, I’ve written two or three booklets on the subject of Older Than Dirt. No, I’m not quitting or...


The census is coming

April 5, 2019

It’s been 10 years and time has marched on. Which means next year in 2020 ­we’re all going to be counted to make sure we’re still alive somewhere on the planet. Once again, we’ll fill...


EssentialCowboy Oils

March 29, 2019

A few years back Clyde and Shorty (a couple of retired but still active old cowboys) investigated the powers of the then popular fad about the miracle benefits of Blue-Green algae (read that pond scum)....


Opportunity

March 22, 2019

Well, folks. The years have flown by. Remember back when? Back when every day presented a possibility for adventure? In those days, myself and my dog used to use weekends to explore as much of...


How to deal with telemarketers

March 15, 2019

Clyde and Agnes, a ranch couple in their older years, were enjoying another cup of morning coffee before getting on with the day’s chores. The phone rang. Clyde got up to answer it — the...


Wild women

March 8, 2019

Sow’s Ear Gwen Petersen Big Timber, Mont.


Chicken whispering 101

March 1, 2019

You hear all the hoopla in the media ‘bout whispering to horses, But who speaks up for chickens that folks make into corpses? It takes a person of intrinsic worth and sensitive finesse To seek...


Playing the washboard

February 22, 2019

In a Sow’s Ear Gwen Petersen Big Timber, Mont. Do you know what a washboard musical instrument is? And/or what it looks like? A washboard is comprised of a standard washboard that used to be...


Another story full of bull

February 15, 2019

Many years back when there was a need to acquire a lot of bull to service our cows, we leased a prime specimen ­­— dubbed “Prince William” by his owner — from a rancher way...


The Gwendolyn gazette

February 8, 2019

Happenstance News of the Odd, the Irregular & the Peculiar In case you’re wondering, the above Gazette is a Tidbit Newsletter designed to feature opinions not usually allowed elsewhere In this issue, yours truly becomes...


A pox on them

January 31, 2019

Is anyone else sick of telemarketers and phone-happy politicians? The following is a parody to the tune: Battle Hymn of the Republic. It’s a “work in progress” so to speak. Add your own verses as...


The plot thickens

January 25, 2019

It’s January of the New Year and so far, all resolutions for self-improvement have been broken, abandoned or trashed. Therefore, it’s time to write a play. Serious, intense, deep-meaning, soul-searching pathos elements of many dramatic...


‘National Day’ day

January 18, 2019

As everybody knows, on every single day in every single month in every single year, there’s a designated “National Day” celebrating whatever. Such as: the National Bird Day or the National Hat Day or —...


The cursed wind

January 11, 2019

Do you have wind in your county? If you don’t, you’ll find all that moving air concentrated here in this Montana county. You’re welcome to come and harvest all the zephyrs, breezes, gales, drafts, wafts,...


Petersen: What to name the baby

October 19, 2018

Harry and Harriet, cattle ranchers, were about to have their second child. The question became: What to name the baby. Sometimes a serious name, chosen with love, can turn into an embarrassing nickname that sticks...


You know it’s going to be a hard winter

October 16, 2018

The good ol’ boys at the coffee shop, stressed-out ranchers gloomily palaverin’ about the weather while leaning on the backend of a pickup and anxious business townsfolk pondering the pessimistic prospect of nobody buying their...



Petersen: DawgDays

September 28, 2018

Here we all are… stumbling onward toward 2019. For a bazillion years, I’ve written and produced an annual Toot, Snoot, ‘n Hoot comedy show, proceeds benefitting a variety of good causes. Digging through old, and...