The Useful Duck!

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Monday, November 8, 2010

Monday morning and it looks like work...

I think I am about to become quite busy again. So here are some tidbits and some links and food for thought.
1. My brother sent me this link to the Whizbang guy. Apple cider maker. I want to make slightly hard cider cause I love the taste.

2. Interesting blog I found from the wizbang guy's blog (click here to go to it or find it in my blogs I'm following side bar. Agarian society or something like that.

3. I've been checking my blog statistics. People keep finding the Lazy Farmer by doing a search for drag chains for planting soybeans. The drag chains are really simple.
As you can see, I don't have a good photo of the chains. But, you can see the brackets. I copied this from the martin catalogue. The chains are the part of old truck tire chains that go over the tyre to improve traction. They are a funny looking twisted type chain. The length is not a huge issue. They need to loop behind and drag over the row. I made two brackets out of 3/8 x 1" strap which bolt to the press wheels and are bent out so that the chain loops over the row better. It doesn't work to leave two ladder-like sections of tire chain connected. It does not work like a two bar harrow. Instead it all balls up and doesn't work at all.
So, if you are searching for drag chains for planting soybeans there is your answer.

4. Old stories-Ralph has a whole (mindless ramblings blog) series of videos on youtube from his family farming history. They are pretty interesting (well to us farmer types) Click here to hear his family singing "Old Mountain Dew" from the 1950's. And here to see his other videos. I like the chainsaw music one.

5. The cousins were at our house Sunday. My brother and his wife went to the coast for their anniversary and the kids came to our house. Dad was at home by himself. We kept the fire going for him and Joey ran over and checked on him. I made sure he was ok at 10:30. He was in bed asleep. At 12 a.m. the power went out. My cell phone rang. Dad said the lights were out. We told him that we had called PGE and the lights would be on in a while. At 1:45 a.m. the phone rings again. Dad says there are no lights. I say, well just stay in bed! Do you have a flashlight. Well, yes but it is in the bedroom. I say where are you. I'm in my chair he says and it is getting cold.
So, I grab a flashlight and head out the door. It was pouring rain. I came back in and got the keys for my truck. My wife laughed at me as it is not that far.  I needed the headlights to make it though the yard. Apparently the 7th calvary had a last stand on the front lawn. There was a wagon with a tall flag and several more wagons in a circle. I think there was also a cannon and a couple dead horses plus a number of stick weapons. A lot of death and destruction for kids attending the sort of church school they attend.
I get into the house and dad is setting in his chair. I guess after I left him in bed he got up to watch a Gene Autry movie on his iBook and was caught in the living room without lights when the power failed. I built up the fire and helped him to be. I guess you can do what ever you want when you are 90 years old.
But, I digress...
I was telling the kids about dads adventures and that they need to get him to tell stories. Dad smiles and is generally happy and polite and agreeable, but he is pretty remote as well. Very hard to talk to about anything personal.
They didn't know he was somewhat of a cowboy and could stand on a horse and loop a spinning rope around him and the horse. He could shoot a dime out of the air with a .22. He made a road trip to the Pendleton Roundup in the 1940s or so. He used to ride a 4 horse team to the field with only one broke horse-standing on the backs of the  horses. He used to ride a Harley-Davidson motorcycle. He and his brothers once pushed their pet goat off the roof. Great-Grandma quit driving after forgetting how to turn off the model T and having to drive it round and round the house till it ran out of gas...
I told them they needed to hear these stories since they lived with him and one day he was going to fall over dead and then no-one would hear all those stories.

6. Interesting link to The Resistance where there is a post on the infamous naked body scanners at airports. Now we know why we are going to have to be exposed to x-ray radiation! Follow the money!

And now I've lost my train of thought. I guess I will go to work. I have to plant for some neighbors who are having a crisis and we will have to have a talk and my drill is broken and I have to pressure wash 3" of caked on mud off the drill and I want to go back to bed and my back hurts and the world seems to be falling apart and farming is looking grim and it is foggy and I have no money and no one bought me that nice White tractor or gave me a grant for 1.5 million dollars or, or, or, (sob)

Perhaps I will post a video of the cousins singing silly songs and playing with legos. That may be amusing.

Have a nice day!!!

(no-I am not proof-reading this, I have to go to work now!)


  1. 4. above...Saskatchewan Country Music is the real goods. Ending piece sounds like a spirited version of fiddle tune 'St. Anne's Reel' with a house dance going on. Ralph?

  2. Budd, I sure like the older folks' stories. Your Model T story reminds me of when some of my ancestors bought a '32 Ford after driving a Model T for over ten years. My Great-Great Grandfather was driving it home one day, and as he came into the garage he fell back on the model T habits and pushed hard on the gas, thinking it was the brake....or maybe the shifter? I forget how T's worked. Anyway the T was sitting in the back of the garage and he pushed it through the back wall of the garage before he got it stopped. Supposedly throughout the whole ordeal, he was heard yelling "Whoa...Whoa...Goddam it, Whoa!"

    What a change it must have been to go from horse power to horsepower in such a relatively short time.

  3. Budde, thanks for linking to my youtube videos. As I said, I have more material to add when time and bandwidth permits.
    I'm impressed that your Dad, at 90, can use modern technology like I.books. I know people much younger than him that hardly know how to turn a computer on.
    Orin, glad you liked the country music I posted. Your likely right on the name of that tune. It was one of my Uncle Roy's favourites but not sure if that is him playing. He played banjo, fiddle, accordion a little, all self taught.

  4. It's the self taught part that makes it real and alive. Kids playing today who think fiddling has to be all slicked up and judged in contests should pay attention. Old field recordings are pure gold.

  5. I really enjoyed reading your blog. good job!

  6. Thanks for the comments. I think those old guys were made of a little stronger stuff. I hate to see the old stories lost. I think it would be fun to be like old A.P. Carter and collect the old songs and memories, but I don't like to bug people.
    JT-Thanks for the comment, I've just been posting and not reading other folks so much. I liked your fishing story. Pretty funny. Took my daughter fishing, she rescued the worms and made me use the paste.

  7. Budd, are you writing down your dad's stories? I enjoyed hearing about his life and your grandchildren will find it priceless. I have several pages of my great-grandmother's own synopsis of her life. She lived 99 years and recalled in great detail living in a Nebraska dugout as a child, using real horse power, and family get-togethers.

  8. Mz. Frumpy-It is very hard to get the old guys to tell stories. Dad always says he doesn't remember. When we can get them going at coffee time I always try and write it down.
    I need to come up with a set of who what when where and why and do a kind of interview.


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