The Useful Duck!
Contribute to my Vacation, please...
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Here are some photos. I like the old rides and the old buildings. I think guinea's are ugly! Wife took Sadie on her first carnival ride!!! And Sadie and I try out the Foot Tingler. Foot massage for a quarter!
And we had ice cream-but not photos to prove it!
Now Sadie and I are going to go and do something other than be on the internet. Not sure what it is but we are going to do it...
Sadie is looking over my shoulder. She say that the spider ride was the most fun. It is the ride pictured. It spun in circles and went up and down. She says this ride was her favorite part of the fair. The animals were, "ok." She does say she wants to go next year. So it must have been ok.
Saturday, August 29, 2009
Friday, August 28, 2009
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Got to talking with a friend of mine about local farming. This whole grass seed market is dead. It is funny to see how many folks have become totally dependent on growing a luxury item. Golf courses are figuring out how to avoid reseeding, the whole push towards the green bs is also hurting. It is going to be back to small grains and specialty crops. But, there is no livestock industry left, dairy industry is going down. These idiots who tell you bigger is better should all be taken out behind the barn and, and, and, made to set on tacks!
If there were say lots more farms 100 clear up 800 acres, (less than 100 acres often means strange yuppie folks or horse farmers or gensing growers or alternate lifestyle folks) and those farms had 20 head of cattle, or a few hogs, and some chickens those people would be buying feed from other farmers in the area, and those with plenty of manure would be using the manure, and selling the extra, and if there were a few 350 cow dairies there would be silage to chop and corn to grow. If there were a few row crop farms there would be corn to haul and no one person could afford an expensive no-till drill or a monster combine or a 400hp tractor and a disk ripper and there people would practice conservation tillage-because it is their own farm and they have to look at the same ground every day... But it won't happen. Everyone thinks they have a vision from Donald Trump to be the biggest farmer there every was, and every farmer thinks he is the best farmer there ever was.
In other news, we are almost done with straw baling. Got a little peaved with employee yesterday. He has been baling for me for 10 years I think. I had just left the field with the stacker and he wanted me to come back and fix a knotter. I said, "look under the hood by the knotter fan, there is a decal with pictures of broken knotts. Find the one that looks like your problem and do what it says." He grumbled a bit but called back a half hour later and said he fixed it. Good Job Bill!
Later he called and said the swather kept dying. I went over looked at it with him. We pretty much decided it was the fuel pump. Actually that was Bill's opinion to begain with and we just did some basic trouble shooting and decided that was most likely the problem. (diesel Hesston 6610) I called a friend to ask his advice and Bill got tired of waiting and he took the fuel pump apart. Note: not the injector pump, the fuel pump. By the time I got off the phone he had the pump apart and found some broken seal parts lodged in the diaphram. He put it back together and it worked!
Have 14 blocks of wheat straw to bale and 20 acres of thin barley straw to bale. I bale the barley straw to put into ponds to kill algae so I'm putting those in 2-tie. If it will bale it... Lots of bent bales yesterday. Forgot what a PIA a Freeman 200 can be...
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Fixed the A/C on the White 2-135. Got a new compressor after several wrong ones. The difference between a rotary compressor with flare fittings and one with o-ring fittings is nothing but $100. Ouch!
Then, when I was looking for leaks I removed the evaporator from the cab. I was very careful cleaning it and handling it, so no fins were bent. Then when I was blowing out the a/c vents in the cab I hit the evaporator with the air hose and knocked it to the ground. It landed one of the fittings and it made a hole when I straightened the fitting. I soldered it! Unbelievable. It actually worked. It was impossible to reach, plus none of the butane torches out here worked, couldn't find any acid core solder, or flux. But, after much fussing around I was able to melt some solder on the crack in the fitting. Then I drew a good vacuum and dumped in some a/c leak sealer.
It worked yesterday evening. Hope it works today. Pretty hot yesterday, today it is supposed to hit 100.
I have to get everything ready in anticipation of a visit from Ed Winkle. Not everyday a famous blogger comes to visit you!
Sunday, August 16, 2009
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Friday, August 14, 2009
Thursday, August 13, 2009
Two hours later I got a call from Shelley, the person in charge of my father's account. She got my brother's name wrong, and did not understand several things about the business, so she thought we were trying to scam them. I explained the complexities of our farm business and the fact that dad does some strange things and then forgets what he does. I also noted that Dad had been talked into a number of purchases, 20 gallons of rustproofer, 10 gallons of mouse bait, and so I was kind of touchy about these issue. She my dad seemed to know what he was talking about and was capable of making decisions. I said, well that's half the problem. She apologized and said she would not charge our account. I asked for a return authorization number or what to do with the materials, I said there was just one packet of information and a bill for $500. She said that they sent us a huge thick book in May. Moment of silence. I said, "oh' Another moment of silence, now it starts to make sense. I couldn't figure out what my brother was talking about when he said we had already got some of the materials. I remember that book. Dad thought the Oregon OSHA people had sent him the book as part of the OSHA class I had attended.
So I apologized and said I thought we had to pay for what we had received. So we all shared apologies and I hung up very embarrassed. I suggested the start a course on "Communication within a Business." She did laugh...
Well, that is what email contact numbers are for. I did get results and I did express myself. It is a shame I was WRONG...
Our business recently received a package of safety training materials and a bill. Upon reading the bill we saw that we had signed up for a five year subscription for safety information.
My brother called your company and apparently our 90 year old father sent in a subscription card and requested the information. My brother says that because we sent in a subscription card we could not cancel the order and but you did cut the subscription rate down to a one year subscription.
Now, I was not the one on the phone, and I am but a minor partner in this business. This is a very small business. My brother and father are good natured honest people. Perhaps you should branch out into taking candy from babies. You could probably resell it on your very nice slick website-that makes you look like a legitimate business.
I really don't care whether your materials are good, or if there are a hundred glowing testimonials.
I really don't see how it matters if we sent in a subscription card or not. Your materials are not what we need or want. If you were a reputable business you would take the materials back and cancel our bill. This is totally unbelievable that you would even argue about this issue. We are not happy, we don't want your services and that is all.
Won't do much good I don't suppose but I'm still pissed...
Yesterday I saw the Farmer whose field it was and he told me how uncomfortable it was to be in the middle of the deal.
His son had told my annoying friend he could have part of a straw field. This farmer who owned the field then found someone to bale the whole field. He told the baler guy that he had to make a deal with annoying guy for the straw that was promised to him.
Now, annoying guy told me they wouldn't give him any straw, but rather offered to sell him year old straw for a high price.
Farmer said the baler guy offered to bale straw for annoying guy at a reasonable cost or to haul him last years straw, to his barn for a reasonable price. Not, quite the same story I heard.
It sounds like he didn't get his straw because he is; ANNOYING.
I really didn't think the farmer would not be true to his word.
But, yet this is the classic straw field story. Someone always needs it more than you do and it is for your own good that it is given to someone else.
Lessons: Just because someone likes to talk doesn't mean they like you-it just means they like to talk. Generally, people with horses who wear funny tight pants call horse riding "dressage" are unreliable. Don't fly off the handle about something with out knowing the facts...
IF SOMEONE GIVES YOU A FIELD OF HAY or STRAW-GET ON IT! Get it done before someone else gets it. Say thanks, move a tractor, pay them money, do something to make it yours, and what ever you do-DON'T ANNOY THEM!
Monday, August 10, 2009
Friday, August 7, 2009
Thursday, August 6, 2009
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
I think perhaps I need to realize this is the 21st century and people whose word is their bond-people who lived by handshake agreements-that world is no more.
It was pretty funny however. Some people wondered what horse people used straw for. (bedding) The point was brought up that I shouldn't care as I didn't want the straw anyway, that is true, but kind of misses the point.
But, the basic understanding I keep getting reinforced is that you need to be a much bigger farmer. And you need to get there anyway possible. After all farming should not be your lifestyle-it should be a business. That of course means you should try to get the best of every business deal, I suppose...
One fellow did thank me for advice I gave him on my White tractor, so that was nice.
Off to work I go! Hi! Ho! Perhaps I can steal a field of straw from someone today! Whoop! Whoop! That will bring me personal satisfaction!
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
I have this friend who has horses. He is pretty annoying but he is basically a good guy. He is obsessed with getting the best deal possible, and he is an Austrian immigrant so the whole combination is both frustrating and comical at the same time.
He found a field of wheat straw two miles from his house. So he asked the farmer if he could have enough to bale 600 bales for his horses. He wanted me to bale it and he would haul it with his Super 1048.
We have had several discussions about when I am going to bale it. I said middle to end of the week and he wanted it done right away. I pointed out that I have commitments and have to keep a schedule. Finally I told him to just get the whole field spoken for and I would bale it at the end of the week and take what he didn't want. We could run a swather over and do a proper job.
Finally, I just called the farmer, who I have known for years, and talked to him about it. The farmer said he had given the straw to another baler person, but that person said he would take care of my Austrian. This was basically ok with me as I didn't really want to bale there as it is a long drive from where I need to be. I think I have plenty of wheat straw if I want to bale it.
So, my Austrian friend calls me that evening. He had gone to check out the field and found the baler guy and the farmer at the field. The baler guy offered to sell him last year's straw for $50 a ton to replace the perfectly clean straw in the field. Austrian said the farmer backed up what the baler guy said.
I didn't call the farmer again. I guess I should and get the story straight because this sort of thing just really pisses me off.
Farmer will give you straw and then someone bigger comes along and the farmer will tell you that the bigger guy needs it more than you do and gives it to the other guy.
Farmer always thinks he is the most honest guy in the world and figures I will be understanding.
Baler guy thinks he is really smart for getting another field of straw away from someone else.
What a bunch of jerks.
The field was only two miles from the guy's barn. He was totally set. I've found him straw but it is 10 miles away.
Baler guy could find straw anywhere. He is going to truck it with squeeze and a set of doubles anyway so 3 to 10 miles makes not difference.
Farmer should have stuck by his word.
Is there anyone who is honest and fair anywhere in this world. I would like to go down there and tell the weird old @#$%er with the baler that he owns me either 600 bales or $750 as he just stole my job. Just start picking bales up with my stacker. But, I guess I don't know the whole story. Will have to corner the farmer as he comes out from time to time. I didn't want to do the job anyway.
Monday, August 3, 2009
Took dad and S. to Antique Powerland Sunday. S. and I go every year. We like to look at the old tractors, ride the miniature railroad, see the trolly museum, ride the trolley, wander around.
Saturday, August 1, 2009
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