Today’s farm update is from Ben.

Here we are in November and my 1940’s station on SiriusXM radio has been replaced by Holiday Music! Bah! Harumph! For two months!! Grrrrr….

It’s been getting cold at night; mid 20’s. I drained all the hoses. Drained the outside faucet on the wellhouse, and moved the chicken’s water inside. Kelly helped me get the pressure washer into the wellhouse so that pump doesn’t freeze and I took some chemicals in the house. There are a few things in the shop I’ll take in the house before it starts getting serious cold. Things like ‘never sieze’, gasket cement, and the tire-ject’ stuff, stump killer, etc.

Last week I used a trailer and delivered straw to the neighbor’s strawberry farm. That night I noticed all the chickens water buckets were tipped over and their self-watering thing was off the base and tipped over and I thought what the heck happen here?? And then I saw the tracks. I pulled the trailer out, drove right over the top of all that stuff. Broke one bucket. Man o man… pay attention Ben.

Still no time for farming in my life. Open house at the theater on the 6th so finishing touches for that. Then opening a show in that space on 11/26 so a few more finishing touches for that. Called for final inspections by the city, electrical, and plumbing… one of those things I’m at their mercy and waiting for their phone call that says “Sometime in the next 30 minutes”, between 8 and 5.  But they’ve all been good people. No serious issues. Will be nice to have it done.

The neighbors have been bringing silage and round bales of hay for their beef cattle for the last month. I suspect they’ll be taking the cattle back home pretty soon here.

The other neighbors with the late planted soybeans are harvesting them this week. The beans were starting to mature and drop their leaves before it froze. It would appear they got a decent crop off them for late planted beans. They sure got lucky with the weather. And it sounds like they’ll be working on my corn next week. I had the co-op pulling some soil samples and I had asked for them to do “grid sampling” on a rented field. That got lost in translation somewhere and they just pulled a single sample from this 10 acre field. (Grid Sampling, is pulling more samples / field to be able to adjust fertilizer rates more precisely. Not something I can do, but something the co-op could do with their equipment) After a few phone calls, we decided to wait until the corn is off, grid sample the entire farm, then apply lime, if needed, to as much as I can afford to do this fall. (All the fertilizer and chemical prices are way up this fall from the spring. Supply Chain issues) They don’t want me to chisel plow the corn stubble until after lime is applied in order to have a smoother surface for the applicators to drive on. I certainly understand that… it just delays me doing fieldwork until they’re done and hopefully the weather still holds.

Fall fieldwork is always better than spring fieldwork. Even when it’s too muddy, as long as there’s enough traction and it doesn’t plug up, it doesn’t have to work up so well because after the freeze / thaw of winter, it will work up OK in the spring. But I don’t have tractors with tracks, or big enough tractors, that a little mud and a little slippery and I’m done. Then there’s the whole soil compaction issue of working wet soil, but again, maybe the freeze thaw prevents that. We have about 11 acres in a conservation reserve program (CRP – not to be confused with CPR) and planted to wildflowers. Been in the program 11 years now. It’s a 10 year program and Iast year I modified it and re-enrolled for another 10 years. It’s flat, rich, black soil, and makes real good crops. IF it’s dry enough to plant and harvest. Often it gets too wet. That’s why it qualified for CRP. And I have a couple corners that are rocky and surrounded by trees and the deer come out and eat it all. So, I’ve been leaving those bits idle the last few years. I am working to enroll that in CRP. That way I get a payment on the idle ground and it’s not just a net loss for me.

Duck update: All the critters are still around this week. Or at least, the ones I keep track of. Twenty brown ducks, 4 black and white, 4 cream colored, 6 Poofy. And I don’t know how many chickens… 40 or 50.  We’ve got these three roosters: The boss,


and the up and coming #3.

Boss and #2 are almost identical, except the boss doesn’t have any comb on his head. And #2 just has a little one. It’s interesting #3 is never far away from #1 as the photo shows. But if #2 shows up, The Boss chases him away. Evidently #3 is sucking up. Biding his time.

Kelly and I (and the dogs) took a 4 wheeler ride down in the woods one afternoon. It was a nice drive. Header photo is from there.

What kind of medical training do you have? Are you trained in CPR? How do you handle blood? What wakes you up in the morning?

73 thoughts on “November”

  1. Many construction companies require at least one person (usually the foreman) to have certified first aid training. I had an initial 30 hour course with annual updates. Learning CPR, blood loss management, epi delivery, head and spine immobilization, clearing the airways and how to call 911 is very interesting. And it’s not rocket surgery. An essential is to not panic.
    It helped me on one occasion when a guy using a floor buffer somehow came into contact with a live wire and was stuck to the machine. I knew not to touch him, so used a stick to unplug the machine. He described the sensation as current passing from his hand, up the arm, through his heart, down the leg, to his foot, which was touching the buffer. Scary.
    But now about CPR. Administration of it is not always appropriate. There is debate among medical professionals as to its value as a means of recessitation among some victims.

    Liked by 6 people

  2. I was trained in CPR during my competitive swimming days, sixty-two years ago, back when it involved only chest compression and no mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. If you’re bleeding, you had better hope that someone else is around to help out; I’m absolutely useless at the sight of blood. As far as calling 911, I can handle that if luck would have it that I have my phone handy. Trust me, you’re better off not having a medical emergency around me.

    What wakes me up in the morning is one of two things: a full bladder, or Martha wanting some attention.

    Liked by 5 people

  3. I hold a BSN (nursing) from the U and have 34 years of hospital nursing under my belt. All of it was with babies – 7 years on a pediatric unit and 27 years on the NICU. We did CPR re-certification every 2 years. And I had a fair amount of hands on resuscitation during my career. I only had to do adult CPR once. A co-worker and I were at a rural golf course when an elderly gentleman collapsed on the first tee box. We did do CPR until medical help arrived but it was to no avail. I have been retired for 12 and a half years and am not up to date on current CPR practices but I still remember the basics. I’ve dealt with lots of blood over the years, including drawing blood from babies for testing. None of that has bothered me. I can manage my own blood if I accidentally cut myself or get some other scrape. But I can’t watch my own blood being drawn – makes me a bit queasy.
    My internal clock usually wakes me up after 6 to 7 hours of sleep – or else, like PJ, a need to pee.

    Liked by 7 people

    1. Thanks for your work as a nurse K-Two!
      I haven’t had to deal with anything too serious with the college kids. Some bumps or falls… not much blood. I always tease them not to bleed on the set.
      And the college doesn’t want me to keep too many medical supplies on hand; we’re not supposed to deal with major emergencies; call an ambulance is their rational. I have the chemical ‘instant cold’ packs, some bandaids, some vet wrap, and antibiotic ointment, but it’s always out of date when I need it.

      Ten years ago during a show, one of the actors hyperventilated. She was down in the dressing room. I knew Dad and he was in the front row. I went and got him. I didn’t know mom, who was sitting next to him of course, but that didn’t dawn on me. Took Dad downstairs. A few minutes later mom showed up and boy was she mad! Oops. Sorry about that.

      Liked by 3 people

    2. I used to get a little lightheaded when I watched the lab tech draw blood. Something about seeing the blood suddenly rush into the tube made me feel a little ill. Now I’ve had so many blood draws, though, that it doesn’t faze me at all.

      Liked by 2 people

  4. I’m looking forward to the clocks going back; It fit’s my internal clock better.
    Some days the roosters will walk around the house crowing and wake us up, but that’s more unusual. Lately I wake up about 6:30 and my brain turns on and I may as well get up. 7:30 would be my ideal wake up time.

    I’ve had CPR training, but it’s been a few years. And I’m OK with blood too. As Wessew says, don’t panic.

    Liked by 5 people

  5. Rise and Shine Baboons,

    I have no mechanical training at all, in any way, ever. The closest I ever came was learning to oil my sewing machine in 4H and Home Ec class back in the dark ages. I do have a lot of CPR training, as well as in the Heimlich Maneuver. I have never used the CPR, but my police friend always warned me to place a handkerchief over the mouth of anyone you might need to revive. The recipients tend to upchuck in the middle of the procedure. I have used the Heimlich Maneuver on my own father when a medication lodged in his windpipe. It was very frightening and dramatic. By the time we noticed he was not breathing his face was deep purple. The Maneuver did pop the pill right out with such force that we never found it.

    OT—My family has, already this morning, experienced the Thanksgiving Shoot Out at the OK Corral over the two anti-Vaxxers’ plan to attend the occasion. My brother and I had to confront our nephew about his willingness to expose his entire family and 93 year old grandmother to the consequences of his poor decision-making. He backed down and agreed to stay home while the rest of his vaccinated family celebrates. I hope this is the end of it. I felt so angry with him.

    Liked by 6 people

    1. Well done with the Heimlich on your dad!

      Don’t blame you on the Thanksgiving discussion either. It’s under discussion in my family too…we’re stalling until we know more details. It will be at a neutral location, we’re just not sure who’s coming yet.

      Liked by 5 people

  6. I grew up in a family that did not discuss medical stuff. I am untrained in CPR. The only connection I can make with that topic is to note that my dad did once save someone’s life with CPR. He ended up being not sure he’d ever do that again.

    Liked by 4 people

  7. I was working for the Farm Service Agency (Called ASCS at the time; too long of an abbreviation to explain) when CRP was created. The farmers would come in and ask about, “…that CPR program…” 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

  8. Once did Heimlich on a 90 year old man eating at our house. He says I saved his life. He could be dramatic.
    Teachers were required to be trained in CPR. Was trained 3 times over a dozen years. A month after each training it was gone. A year later would have been ridiculous to try using it.
    My own blood does not bother me, but if other people are bleeding badly, it bothers me. Not going to faint or anything and does not stop me from bandaging the person. Another person’s vomit makes me retch, even vomit. When a calf was born, the afterbirth in the gutter when I was cleaning really bothered me. So odd. Opening up an animal when butchering never bothered me.
    It is pain that wakes me up in the morning, unless I have early alarm. And pain wakes me up 1-5 times during the night.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. I love blood! Minor cuts are easily controlled with compression. Blood flow minimizes infections. Traumatic blood loss requires volume replacement which is easily done with saline solutions.
    I have had many blood draws and watched all of them. I have welcomed new phlebotomy students to do their thing.
    As a construction worker, I have cut myself many times. Most are resolved with a bandaid or duct tape. Bloody Red Green duct tape.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. My own blood, I’m fine with – mostly. In Moscow one of the small boys I was taking care of ran into another kid on a swing. Small gash in his scalp, lots of blood. I sat on the edge of bathtub trying to clean and bandage it up. When I came to, I was on my back in the tub with Thomas peering down at me. What happened to you? he asked, still bleeding. I pulled myself together and got him cleaned up and put back together.

      Liked by 4 people

  10. check pandora ben
    free with ok commercial intrusion
    build your own 40’s station
    glen milker tommy dorsey red nichols cab calaway duke ellington gershwin and they will suggest adders or you plug in frank sinatra and doris day and get their bands from then

    medical training
    no formal my dad was a medic in the navy but couldn’t stand the sight of blood so he didn’t go into medicine
    i learned a lot from my homeopath and thought about doing that as a side hustle
    i’d enjoy that
    what gets me up… all that stuff in my brain. i wake up behind my calendar and try to get the top items on the list ticked off by the end of the day but usually end up adding more than i delete
    lists r us is my wake up call

    thanks for the update
    i like the saturday’s brain switch to farm mode
    hope you keep it up

    Liked by 5 people

  11. I learned CPR in high school swim class – can’t remember name of it, but for lifeguard training… Don’t remember a thing. No other medical training, and I haven’t ever had to use what I don’t know on anyone. Haven’t had to handle much blood, either, so not sure what I would do with a great quantity…

    Love hearing about The Boss and #2 and #3 – Husband talks about that when they (on the “hippie farm”) would have a chicken dinner – would purposely take the head rooster and then watch what happened.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. The Boss and #2 are probably about 3 years old. #3 was born this spring. When I order chicks in the spring I order just hens, but sexing chicks is not a perfect science and out of 30 or 40 chicks, 1 or 2 turn out to be roosters.
      Ordering males is cheapest on chicks. Females are more expensive. And a “straight run” is middle price. Prices vary; rare varieties might be $11 / female chick and $5 for males. More ‘run of the mill’ chicks can be $4 for females and $2.60 for males.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. cpr… i think i’m certified
    i could keep you alive if it was just you and me but a refresher may be in order

    how do i handle blood, as required… my buddy justin taught me years ago to seal up a deep one with miracle glue and i also have aloe around to heal the wound and get it healing up

    you know dale’s sideways questions were always tied in there somehow . i don’t see the sideways connection here
    did i miss it ?

    Liked by 3 people

  13. The only other time I’ve had to act in an emergency situation was my sophomore year of college.

    The old man who tended to the coal furnace in the house I lived in, caught his clothes on fire in our basement. He apparently had gotten too close to a large glowing ember he had removed from the furnace. By the time I realized there was a problem, he was frantically running around the back yard flailing his arms at the pant legs of his coveralls which were ablaze. I shouted to wasband, who had been a medic in the Air Force, and he ran outside and tackled him to the ground, rolling Mr. Taupe in the grass while patting out the fire with his hands. Meanwhile I filled a basin with water and grabbed a clean sheet to put out the rest of the fire. He was wearing two pair of pants under his coveralls, and they were all burned away, his skin hanging in shreds. Wrapped in the sheet, I got him into the passenger seat of our car, and drove him to the ER at the hospital we lived across the street from. All of this took about five minutes. The nurse on duty at the ER refused to admit Mr. Taupe when he told her he didn’t have a doctor. “You mean to tell me you’re 83 years old and don’t have a doctor?” she said incredulously, and told me to drive him to a clinic a few miles away. I protested, to no avail. So I drove him to the clinic where they took one look at him and said he needed to go back to the ER. By this time, Mr. Taupe was going into shock, ashen and shaking violently.

    I visited him at the hospital every day, holding his hand, trying to comfort him as he slowly slipped away. He died five days later from third degree burns on both legs and his lower torso.

    There was a coroner’s inquest into his death, and I was subpoenaed to testify. (Ironically, on the subpoena, my name appeared both as the witness, and as the deceased.) The hospital was found negligent and received a small fine and ordered to review their policy as it pertained to admittance to the ER.

    For months I couldn’t get the smell of Mr. Taupe’s burning flesh out of my nostrils, but I’ll never forget the name of that ER nurse: Paula S. Truly.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. Some of the details of that story are just so incredibly sad, Steve. I wept for days after it happened, and had to retake a math final exam because I came straight from the hospital when Mr. Taupe died and took it. I couldn’t see straight, let alone take a math test.

        Liked by 4 people

    1. That would be a terrible thing to witness, and even worse to encounter a nurse who had so little empathy. But burns are so difficult to treat, it’s probably unlikely that he would have had a chance for survival, even if he had been promptly admitted. Perhaps he would have fared better in a modern burn unit like the ones Regions and other hospitals in the metro have today.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. I agree, Linda, that it’s unlikely that prompt treatment would have changed the ultimate outcome, but perhaps it would have eased his pain sooner, and it most certainly would have lessened the trauma I experienced. This was back in 1969, in a small town hospital without a lot of sophisticated facilities, equipment and experts to treat him, and because of his age, it’s doubtful that he could recover from such a traumatic injury. He suffered longer than he should have, of that I’m sure.


  14. Like others here, I’ve been certified in the past- way in the past. I could probably handle it if there were no other options.

    Despite how incredibly squeamish I am with gory movies and even gory descriptions in books, I don’t seem to have any trouble with blood in person. I can watch them stick the needle in my arm when I give blood and when YA stabbed herself in the face with a dandelion digger, I didn’t have any trouble with that either. Doesn’t make any sense to me at all.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Because my life has taken the turn it has, I’ve had a lot of reason to reflect on nurses. They are remarkable. What impresses me over and over is the way nurses combine compassion with realism. Many of them have encountered the dark side of life in their work. They care for people deeply, but always with a sense of how badly things might go.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. I should maybe say more. If you need help, seek a nurse because she will be strong and practical. If you need psychological comfort, choose carefully before asking a nurse to help. Many of them will tell you the truth, even if it isn’t what you think you want to hear.

        Liked by 3 people

    1. Whjen you are in a small town hospital late at night as a pastor and you know all the nurses and doctors, sometimes waiting for a death, you get to talking. I was told more than once that they themselves make terrible patients.

      Liked by 3 people

  15. I recall when I was about six or seven a neighbor of ours had a handyman who drowned. He was helping with the neighbor’s boat, maybe launching it or bringing it in – I don’t remember the exact circumstances – but he fell into the water and never resurfaced. It was thought he might have had a heart attack that caused him to fall in. After that happened, everyone in the neighborhood was shown a film about mouth-to-mouth resuscitation and CPR. I don’t have a very clear memory of it, except there was a scene in which the narrator was broaching the topic of mouth-to-mouth, and a character in the film turned to the camera and made a face and said “Germs!”

    Later my school had a dummy on which they demonstrated. I’ve never had an emergency that called upon my very limited knowledge, much to my relief.

    Liked by 4 people

  16. I pay so little attention to what I am doing sometimes, especially on tasks I have done often, that I make mistakes. Have not hurt myself yet. Keep telling myself to live in the moment, but my mind insists on being elsewhere. Last night I reset the clocks and discovered this morning I had made a mistake. Want to guess.

    Liked by 5 people

  17. OT – I shared this on my FB page yesterday, so a baboon or two might have seen it already, but this is such a beautiful letter that I thought I would share it here so that those of you who, for personal and understandable reasons, are not on FB. I know it’s long, but it’s worth the read, I promise. It’s a letter sent to Christine Lavin by fan whose identity we don’t know, except for a follow-up post that identifies him as a prosecutor. We should all be so lucky as to deserve and receive such a letter:

    “I just got a letter so kind and sweet, that I want to share it with you, and the letter-writer said it was OK. This is for all of us in our “metallic” years. Any responses you type, I’m going to send to him, so I hope you will — looks like he needs cheering up, too.
    Dear Ms. Lavin,
    Let me begin by warning you that this is likely going to be a long, rambling missive. The only thing that emboldens me to write is that I think you might relate to that sort of thing. It is a drab, chilly, sullen afternoon here”the sort of day I imagine Melville had in mind when it wrote about “November in my soul.” To cheer myself up I have been listening to some of your music. I have been a fan since I discovered you in the mid-1980s, listening to public radio. (Mountain Stage? A Prairie Home Companion? I think my first exposure might have been via the Chenille Sisters singing “Regretting What I Said.”) In any event, you have been way at the top of my favorite singer-song writers for more than half my life. (Oh my God. Is that possible? I wish I hadn’t thought of it.) I can’t say I own all of your recordings, but my collection is pretty impressive.
    What prompted this letter is that I just listened to “The Moment Slipped Away” on “Spaghettification” and I thought this was a moment I didn’t want to slip away without letting you know the important spot you have occupied in my life. I suppose most importantly you have made me laugh. So many times. Literally, out loud. How many things in life are more important than laughter? I suppose this is presumptuous, but your sense of humor has allowed me to think of you as a friend. But, as with all real friendships, this imaginary one goes beyond just enjoying laughs together. You have made me think. You have comforted me when I was sad. You have made me feel understood. I have not admitted to anyone I was ever in a relationship with that I know exactly how it feels to have had “The Kind of Love You Never Recover From” but I do. Since you don’t know me how were you able to write “Attainable Love?” You don’t want to know how many times I have butchered those two songs (along with many other of your compositions. I am a charter member of Roy Blount Jr.’s League for the Singing Impaired. But it doesn’t stop me. As he says, our motto is “Everyone should sing all the time. If God gave you a beautiful singing voice, it’s a fine way to say ‘thank you.’ And if He didn’t, it’s a good way to get even.”)
    You have also served to introduce me to a wide array of other folk musicians Between your own music and that of the other artists I found through your compilations you have contributed immeasurably to the flavor of my life. In what my old Uncle George used to call the metallic years (“when your hair turns to silver, your teeth turn to gold, and your ass turns to lead) I spend most of my days providing after school child care for my soon-to-be eleven year old triplet cousins and I am delighted to pass along to them the gift you have given to me. I’m proud to say that I can take a large measure of credit for turning these little boys into junior social justice warriors. They especially love your rendition of “The Liar Sleeps Tonight” and do an impressive performance of it, each of them taking a different part. Their parents weren’t particularly thrilled that I’d taught it to them, not because they didn’t approve but they worry they might sing it at school. Here in South Carolina, it is not always a good idea to call attention to one’s little blue dots in this sea of red. But part of growing up is learning when discretion is the better part of valor and when to stand your ground. I think that your kind of humor in that song is hard for anyone to take real offense to so I think it’s pretty safe. The boys don’t always get all the humor I enjoy but they do get a lot of it and that song cracks them up.
    I always try to keep my mouth shut when it comes to child rearing decisions their parents make, regardless of what I think. But I did have to speak up when, after school one day, one of them said, “Today was the best day of my life.” I was immediately reminded of your song, “Katy Says Today Is the Best Day of My Whole Entire Life.” His father said, “You say that almost every day. I wish you’d stop.” I couldn’t stop myself from telling him never to say that. We should all be so lucky to have every day be the best day of our lives. I have to reach back to a warm, early autumn afternoon I spent on the old swing my grandfather hung from the branch of a walnut tree when I was four or five for my best day. I wish I could be more like my little cousin and have my best day be today, succeeding my last best day yesterday.
    Well, I warned you this was likely to be rambling, if not a bit incoherent. I have a friend who says all my stories are “long, pointless, and have little local interest.” I’m afraid I have confirmed his assessment. But I just wanted you to know how grateful I am for your work and how much I admire and appreciate your gift. Thank you. I am
    Most sincerely yours,”

    Liked by 8 people

  18. OT: Netflix recommendation. I’m almost to the end of viewing one of the best Netflix offerings I’ve seen. Everything is absolutely first class: writing, acting, cinematography, etc. The series has six episodes. It is Alias Grace, based on a book by Margaret Attwood that was itself based on a true story. I think this series was created in Canada and aired there in 2017. I’m loving it.

    Liked by 5 people

  19. Sven and Ole were out fishing when Sven fell out of the boat and disappeared under the water. Ole dove in, pulled Sven up, laid him out and began mouth to mouth. “Pewh! That Sven had some bad coffee this morning! Hey! Sven wasn’t wearing a snowmobile when he fell out of the boat. I wonder who this is?”
    From PHC 1996 Joke Show

    Liked by 3 people

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