GROWING AND CUTTING AND STUFF

The weekend Farm Report comes to us from Ben.

By the time you’re reading this, I’ll have gotten my gold spec implanted, and had back surgery to remove a cyst. Give me a couple more days and I’ll be up and around like I was back in April! Although the left knee still hurts; the one I was supposed to get replaced in June before I started down this other path. Got the knee on the schedule for December now. The Pessimist in me says, “By August I’ll be back to where I was in April!” The optimist says, “Look what you’ve learned and the people you’ve met and the time you’ve had and the new perspective on things!” Yeah, well. Stuff a sock in it Mr. Optimist. …some days I’m more pessimistic than others…

The agronomy news lately is about side dressing the corn with extra nitrogen. Recently saw this chart showing nitrogen uptake by the plants based on what stage of growth it’s in. Honestly, the more I learn about this stuff, the more fascinated I am. Many farmers have started doing split applications of nitrogen. Anhydrous or liquid nitrogen as starter to get the plant going, and then coming in about now and applying more when it needs the growth spurt and has higher nitrogen needs. I’d like to try it next year when, hopefully, fertilizer prices won’t be so ridiculously high.

We’re over 1000 GDU’s, about 80 about normal.

Kelly and I were driving around the other day, just checking out the neighborhood and seeing how the neighbor’s crops were doing, and we drove through the small town of Viola; home to the Viola Gopher Count. We saw Shea Stadium and the local chapter of this motorcycle club.

There was some discussion among the locals when the club moved in, but you know the old adage, ‘Don’t mess where you sleep’ and this place hasn’t caused any issues. Viola is a town of maybe 25 people. Three streets, two avenues, some gravel, some blacktop. A church (next to the club) and a park with a beer hall (available for rent! But mostly used for Gopher Count) and a townhall.

My brother and I have both played 4H softball at Shea Stadium.

Made the final payment on one of my tractors this week. That’s a good feeling.

Got the roadsides cut last week. Then it rained.

Got it raked and baled on Monday. Thank goodness it was mostly grass and that dries thin and quick. Got 70 bales total.

Oats started heading out on Sunday, June 26th.

Every year, I report what I plant for crops to the local FSA (Farm Service Agency). Any government payments I get come from there. FSA is the agency responsible for keeping track of all that stuff. I’ve written before about government payments, and how that works. In typical government fashion, it’s not always easy. They provide maps and they have measured the fields (by satellite imagery) so they tell me the acres. I may or may not completely agree with there acres, but it’s hard to get them to change their minds. Again, I’m a small farm. I have about 20 fields, and some they have measured individually so I can just say, for example, field 4 is 4.5 acres. But sometimes they lump 5 fields together and give me one total acreage and then I have to break it out by field. Again, not a problem. The fields are measured to the 100th of an acre. But the report they want back only goes to tenths. Just round up or down. Yet it still has to all match. And generally, the fields stay the same from year to year, but some change a bit. (For example, the two corners I put into CRP this year have to be deducted from the rest of the field). And corn ground is ‘worth’ more on the reports than oats. So, round up on the corn, and down on the oats. Play the game.

Way back mid 1980’s I worked for this office when it was called the ASCS office. (Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation Service). Everyone I worked with there has retired.

When we got the gator in the fall of 2020, it came with a yellow flashing beacon on the top. We didn’t order that, but this one happen to come with it. Last week I broke it off. By accident. I was backing into the garage to pick up garbage and just as I’m about to go through the door I thought to myself, “There’s no reason this won’t fit, right?” And that’s when the beacon hit the garage frame. Crap. Broke off the amber globe. There is a bolt, and if it was loose enough, it would have bent out of the way rather than breaking. Well, a year and a half it lasted. Longer than I expected. We have too many trees and low branches and something sticking up or out doesn’t usually last long around here.  

How do you find the silver lining?  

Any stories about gangs?

90 thoughts on “GROWING AND CUTTING AND STUFF”

  1. I am home and moving slow but all went well. The cyst was an old pool of blood from some previous injury; hard to say what caused it, but it was pressing on the spinal cord enough it was giving me all the leg issues.
    Wednesday, using a CT scanner, they inserted a gold spec as a marker for the surgeons on Thursday to find it with the X-ray equipment they use in the OR. It was all pretty interesting. They said I got the last gold spec at Mayo (it had its own serial number!) and I don’t know if that meant the last one for the day, or June, or supply chain issues.
    So a scar about 3.5” long, and moving slow for a few days. But already some improvements in the legs!
    At the moment, I’m feeling more optimistic. 🙂

    Liked by 5 people

  2. My crop report: during the night, something art al but one of my impatiens and begonias from my 7 flower pots. I presume deer, but what do I know. As Vonnegut says, “so it goes.”

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I try hard to think of critters eating my stuff as sharing the bounty, but sometimes it’s hard. Hostas all over my yard seem to be safe from critters except for the one that I keep trying to to grow back near my swing. The one that I planted this year is the fourth in the last 10 years. It has a few nibbles on it so far but I don’t know if it will make it.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I have a kind of knee-jerk reaction to things sometimes, the phrase “Well, at least it wasn’t…..” But sometimes lately I’ve just let myself look at a situation and go “Ya know, this sucks.” Kind of like Ben’s “Stuff a sock in it Mr. Optimist”.

    I’ve belonged to several “gangs”, most currently a book group that gave up all reading the same book – we just brought our favorites to show and tell. We are now scattered and occasionally zoom. Then there’s my college group that gets together every couple of years – I’ve missed a couple, but we’ve met all over the country by now.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. I am worn out with bromides. All the trite Christian phrases that people say with good intent but ingnorance. All the supposedly uplifting comments.

      Liked by 4 people

      1. I agree Clyde. I actually got a good start on this feeling back during the recession when all of the travel programs dried up and people lost their jobs . Every week in our division meeting, our vice president basically made it clear that no one should complain about anything. Because other people had it worse. This ignores the fact that in a crisis even those not directly impacted can certainly feel collateral damage. And of course it’s ridiculous that only people who are going through a crisis are allowed to feel badly.

        Liked by 5 people

        1. And I’m sorry for using the word impact as a verb. I just couldn’t think of any other good way to say that.

          Liked by 2 people

        1. I agree, Clyde, pure and utter bullshit. What’s worse, far from helpful, especially if you’re not a believer. I cringe whenever I hear someone say any of those abundant, mindless phrases, but try to keep in mind that the person uttering it usually means well.

          Once, many years ago, I attended a talk by Harold Kushner (author of When Bad Things Happen to Good People) about this phenomenon. Such a thoughtful man, and a very good speaker. And no, to the best of my knowledge, he’s related to neither Jared nor Tony.

          Liked by 6 people

        2. “Ask not for a lighter burden, but for broader shoulders.” It seems to me that after a certain age, say twenty or so, it’s extremely unlikely that your shoulders are going to grow any broader. The metaphor kinda falls down, in my view.

          Liked by 5 people

        3. my father had a very irish catholic mother ala mother mcrae in the movies circadian 1935 and he had all sorts of offer it up stuff he used to tell us he was raised with that he now thought was hooey

          i keep my optimism up by realizing it’s my choice and i absolutely hate the alternative

          i love being the eternal optimist and plugging away one foot in front of the other to get the right direction in my targeted goal

          you can figure out a way if your brain tells you have to
          you can curl up in a ball if it doesn’t

          i used to do gang stuff at like age 13-16 fistfights
          tire irons and chains and steel toed shoes at the drive ins and dances in case my group encountered a rival ala sharks and jets but it seldom turned into anything
          then i turned into a hippy

          Liked by 2 people

        4. The assertion of never being given anything you can’t handle is not only bullshit, it subtly blames the victim, implying it you can’t handle your travail you are insufficient, either in faith or in fortitude.

          I’ve never read Kushner. The notion that being a good person ought to be protection against bad things happening or that it is surprising when bad things happen to the virtuous was enough to put me off.

          Liked by 3 people

        5. I hear ya, Bill, but it’s hard to ignore that lots and lots of people don’t think like that.

          Kushner is a conservative Rabbi, and as such, I’m sure he has done a fair amount of counseling of distraught members of his congregation (are members of a Jewish temples called congregations?). The actual impetus for the book, however, was the death of his own son, at the age of fourteen, from the genetic disease of progeria.

          Kushner experienced first hand that people of faith can struggle with reconciling their belief in a just and all powerful God when a personal tragedy befalls them. This book was his personal attempt at reconciling such a conflict, and still retaining his belief in God. Considering the four million copies sold, and the fact that the book spent several months on the NYT bestseller list, lots of people were having similar struggles.

          Liked by 4 people

        6. I guess once you’ve been sold on the idea of your conduct as a transaction—if you’re good, you’ll get to go to heaven—it’s hard to accept that life isn’t always fair.

          Liked by 1 person

      2. I always such bromides being expressed with a pious, pained look on the speaker’s face, eyes cast skyward.

        Like

  4. Rise and Shine Baboons,

    I am headed to Iowa today to visit my mother for the first time since my surgery. She is in rough shape with her dementia/Alzheimers now running the show. I am preparing for intense sadness afterwards. No sliver lining here.

    Re: My girl gang from High School just gathered two weeks ago. it was really fun. We were sooooo squeaky clean as kids, leaving little room for mischief. We ran amuck in band and National Honor Society, terrorizing the school. One of the women told us the story of getting a “Perfect Attendance” award on our Senior Awards Day, which I had forgotten. That was for all 13 years of school.

    My inner optimist is muted of late. I am scared about our public life and governance. At the same gathering I wrote about above, though, there was a tiny sliver lining. One of the women is part of two Iowa families who are very traditionally Republican. I always have avoided any political discussions with her, but she raised the issue, expressing concern about a very aged Iowa Senator who she thinks “laid down for #45” and he is too old. She also does not like the Iowa Governor. I nearly fainted dead away. I wonder if this indicates that a very quiet shift is occurring. That conversation was a shock to me and I did not see that opinion coming. Maybe there is a sliver lining. Maybe.

    Liked by 5 people

      1. Our visit went well. My brother visited earlier in the day and found her angry after having been escorted from the kitchen. She thought dad was working in the kitchen and he refused to come see her. Uff Da.

        Liked by 4 people

    1. The Alzheimer’s road is a tough one to walk. You feel so much sadness, a desire to fix everything, helplessness, frustration -all of it. Then one day for just a moment you will see a flash of the person she used to be, the one you knew, and it makes you miss her all the more. And she’s right there in front of you. Sorry, Jacque. It’s just a tough one and finding a silver lining in it is tough too. Maybe some good can come from it. I know that my youngest brother and I have grown very close since our experiences with my mom. My other brother, unfortunately, has apparently decided he wants nothing more to do with us.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. I have had two parents with serious neurological disorders. i cannot even express what that has been like. My brother is probably an alcoholic and he is usually very difficult to cope with. He bloviates and yells. For years I made sure I was never alone with him, but right now he is mad at me for confronting him about this behavior. My sister, who I had been somewhat close to (as long as I ignored her religion), is a mess right now. So I feel pretty family-less, but that is easier than tolerating Christian Evangelism, GOP Evangelism, and being yelled at. I set some limits last fall about various family issues, and no one is happy with me. Except me. I like not being yelled at.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. Wow, Jacque! I’m sending you a hug. I think standing up for what you need is the best thing to do in such a rough situation.

          Liked by 3 people

  5. My son has joined a star-gazinbg gang in Boise. They were out last night. No dark park there but Idaho does not need them.
    Sandy is now in a girl gang. Two women moved in. They seat them all at the same table. They make jokes and chatter, noever quite making sense but enjoying it.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. sounds like supper at my moms table and her gang. One women only mutters and sometimes in German. Another has dementia and you never know which timezone she’s in. And mom doesn’t know who’s talking. But they all enjoy being there and would rather not eat alone.

      Liked by 4 people

    2. When my mother-in-law was in a nursing home, suffering from dementia and verbal aphasia, she got into a similar girl gang. My MIL couldn’t speak, one couldn’t hear, and the third was blind. They were friends and did pretty well, all things considered.

      Liked by 6 people

  6. I am actually quarantining this weekend. It is quarantining when I’ve been exposed and I’m staying home? Or is it still sheltering in place if I don’t think I actually got Covid? Picked up neighbors at the airport on Wednesday night to discover that they were coming home ill, both of them.

    I’m distracting myself by crafting and cooking. Is it mean of me that the brownies that I’m making are going to have icing and sprinkles for the Fourth of July weekend? YA prefers her brownies completely unadorned and I usually do them the way she likes but since I’m feeling a bit sorry for myself today, icing and sprinkles galore.

    Liked by 5 people

      1. You’ll love this. The fact that there are sprinkles and icing didn’t even warrant a comment but she won’t eat them because I put an extra egg in to make them “cakey”. More for me.

        Liked by 5 people

    1. I’ve been plagued by the thought of your neighbors coming home sick. If it’s Covid, I’m aghast that they knowingly would expose a whole plane load of people to the virus, as well as exposing you in the close proximity of your car. Small wonder we can’t beat this thing. Am I missing something?

      Liked by 1 person

  7. My son posted an image of a lost dog poster with picture of some sort of ankle-biter, a terrier I think, Renee.
    Lost Dog
    No Reward. Keep the Dog.
    Identifying Marks
    Should answer to Daisy but doesn’t
    Will bite blonde chioldren
    Hates cats and seagulls
    Personality
    Angry at the world
    Yappy
    Last seen darting across Linden Ave
    causing a minor accident.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. The Jack Russell across the street escaped from his girl while he was being walked and ran across the street to attack Kyrill as he and husband were strolling. It reinforced for husband that having a scoopable dog is a real benefit. Husband scooped up Kyrill and the girl caught the Jack Russell. No one was hurt. Cesky terriers are not aggressive to other dogs like Jack Russell’s are.

      Liked by 4 people

  8. My girl gang (my sister, 2 daughters, granddaughter and I) returned on Wednesday from our annual Girls Hiking Weekend. This was the 13th iteration for granddaughter and me, and about the 16th for the others. Granddaughter’s first GHW was in utero, but we count it. We usually go somewhere on the North Shore and stay 2 or 3 nights at pretty nice hotels or VRBOs. Since we split the cost 4 ways, it’s a reasonably affordable annual splurge. This year was our first time on the South Shore, we stayed at a VRBO in Cornucopia. I wished I knew where Steve’s quaint cabin was so I could see if it still stands. I miss the tales of that place. In any event we had a marvelous time! We saw Bela Fleck at the Big Top Chatauqua, took the ferry and spent most of a day on Madeline Island where the hiking part of the trip happened. We nearly froze to death on the fascinating Apostle Island boat tour, (even though we’d been warned it would be windy, cold, and to wear layers, it took us by surprise; gloves would have been a nice addition to the layers.) We were in Bayfield on Tuesday when a Viking Great Lakes cruise ship stopped to nearly double the town’s permanent population with over 300 well-to-do passengers. Bayfield handled it very well. We had s’mores around the campfire, with the big dipper directly overhead. The sky was too bright to see stars until nearly 10:30. It was, as usual, a wonderful bonding time with my girl gang.

    Liked by 5 people

        1. Having seen Steve’s beloved cabin, I will say that the property was stunningly beautiful with a view of Lake Superior that could hardly be rivaled. The cabin was, well, limited. But when I entered it for the first time I encountered a decaying dead mouse. Mice are just not my thing, so it left me feeling less than in love with the cabin. But he loved it,and he spent time there which gave him great joy.

          Liked by 3 people

        2. Yes, I slept upstairs one night and there were a lot of bugs. The cabin had a certain primitive charm. It would be a great place to write a book.

          Liked by 3 people

    1. Three of my friends were also at the Bela Fleck concert. Kinda funny, they called me from the car on their way to Bayfield. They knew they had tickets to see “some banjo player,” didn’t have a clue who. I had to tell them. Haven’t gotten a report on the concert, as yet, but I hope they enjoyed it.

      Liked by 5 people

  9. I suppose the group of women I used to meet with weekly, and hang out with in the years immediately following my divorce, could be considered a gang if you stretch the definition of gang a bit. It was a great bunch of friends that really helped each other make it through a difficult period of our lives.

    Then, one by one, they moved away, and some remarried. One moved to Duluth, one to North Carolina, and a third went to Montana. Three of us remained in the Twin Cities.

    Shirley, in Montana, is currently very ill with lymphoma. She’s the oldest in the group, 85 years young. She and her husband have visited us multiple times, and we have visited them in Rosebud. I also attended their wedding, along with two other women from the group, 35 years ago.

    Tom and Shirley have always been on the go. They’re avid gardeners, campers, skiers, and hikers and are both in excellent physical shape – except for Shirley’s cancer. Between the two of them they have numerous kids from their previous marriage, and even more grand kids. All in all, they’ve had a pretty good run, but it pains me that I live too far away to be of any meaningful support right now.

    Liked by 4 people

  10. From my daughter yesterday: In spite of warnings that today was anticipated to be one of the absolute worst/most frustrating travel days in the history of modern transportation, our day has been smooth and pleasant and filled with gracious and friendly people in both Minneapolis and Boise.

    Liked by 5 people

      1. I do this entirely via my iPad. Download Chrome and use chrome for WP. Log in, come back to the TB page and hit the “refresh/recycle” icon next to the address field. Then try again.

        Liked by 3 people

      2. I followed Bill’s advice and downloaded the free WP app for iPad. It works much better than in a browser but I still have trouble with some things.

        Liked by 3 people

  11. My identity is all messed up on WP. To fix it I have to have another email address. On IPhone and pad I use chrome. On my computer it prints my blog name but does not otherwise recognize it.

    Liked by 3 people

        1. Celeriac is my favorite root vegetable, I just love it. In fact, I have one in the fridge at the moment. I do like rutabagas; and parsnips and turnips in small quantities. To my tastebuds, the turnip rooted parsley has a peculiar taste that I can’t quite decide whether or not I care for. I rarely buy it or parsnips, but will eat them if served. Celeriac I buy whenever I see a good one, and it never fails that the person at the check out has to ask what it is.

          Liked by 2 people

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.