The Useful Duck!

Contribute to my Vacation, please...

Monday, June 29, 2015

Mustering courage

I must face the day...
Yesterday I finished stacking with no problems.
I rained randomly but mostly not on my hay...
My nephew from the big city was camping at the river and he wanted to ride with me in the stacker. He was heading to a family event in a nearby town. When he left he was covered in hay dust. I'm not sure he noticed. I probably should have told him. He gave me a ride back to the farm. There was a bad traffic accident and the highway was backed up so we took our own detour. This led us by the DairyQueen where we got strawberry milkshakes.
Later in the afternoon my wife and I took the daughter to camp, also with no problems. Her old friends from her previous camping and school were happy to see her. One of them was wearing a t-shirt she had made last year. She seemed a bit nervous to begin with. I reassured her by telling her no one would remember her and that they probably would ignore her now that she was going to public school. I also reminded her not to swear and admonished her not to sneak out behind the cabin and smoke cigars. High fire danger this time of year.
I try to be a good dad.
Today the heat returns.
There is more hay to cut and a combine to get going and hay to haul and broken stuff to repair.
Tuesday I have a funeral to attend.
If anyone else decides to pack it in I hope they tell my Uncle he needs to comeback and make more push-off feet for the stacker, I used the last one Sunday. Why don't ghosts ever do anything useful?They hang around and startle people but never take out the trash or play the fiddle at birthday parties or make push-off feet for the stacker.
End of an Era, The Last Uncle-Built push-off foot.

Also, we saw TV footage of the naked big ride.
I wonder if there were "Goldbond" dispensing stations along with the free water. All I could think of was the horrible chafing. My wife looked closer and declared the event a fraud. People were wearing underwear.
Once a farmer told me about delivering hay to a nudist family. They invited him in for breakfast. They had bacon. He was entranced by the teen daughter (he was her age at the time) I asked him who cooked the bacon and if anyone was injured. He did not have a good answer for that.
If you were a nudist and camping would you have injuries from roasting marshmallows? Why are people nudists? Is it the free flow of air across the skin? Is it the sun? What makes one feel free? Unsupported body parts swinging in the breeze? The sun warming ones bare skin? I've read National Geographic and while folks in warm countries do tend to run about nekkie-nekkie I'm pretty sure in colder climates they tend to play volley ball with more support.
Well, at least I've got something other than farming to think about today...

Sunday, June 28, 2015

Saturday night

I'm tired.
I should be stacking at MuddyValley's farm.
But, I broke the stacker. I thought I was going to be stranded but I was able to bypass the safety lever and drive it home.
When you dump a stack you have to push the stacker out from under the stack. There are push off feet which are powered by long hydraulic cylinders. They stick through the bed. You can't put the bed down with the push off feed extended. This is the second time this year I have done it.
I think it is due to my hydraulic problem that I can't find anyone to fix. I think the push off feet extended while I was putting the bed down.
Because after I bent the right side one into a pretzel and removed it. The bed would not come down because it thought the push off foot was extended.
Plus, I know i heard the two clunks that let you know they have retracted.
I should have gone back. But I was so frustrated and tired I just gave up. But I can't sleep.
I think today, Saturday, June 28. 2015 is the day I officially hate farming. Not just the usual grumpy annoyed farmer thing. No, hatred, pure and simple hatred.
I am almost done with hay. It is crappy over ripe hay due to the 100 degree temperatures.
My mower died, my neighbor came to help and killed his mower, I borrowed another mower and the the fuel gauge showed full for two days and now it is out of diesel.
I am finally in the same field as the baler.
As my helper was blowing off the baler I discovered the frame was broken.
The truck showed up to haul my hay.
My daughter stayed to help rake but had to go home and babysit grampa and pack for camp.
My helper refused to tow the baler home with my pickup. (long story)
Took helper and pick up home. Welded frame, while inspecting weld I discover that four out of eight plunger bearings have completely failed.
My brother found six used bearings that Dad had rat-holed twenty years ago.
Helper and brother pull plunger.
Neighbor shows up with baler and tractor. He is going to help me bale.
I take stacker to MuddyValley.
Neighbor's back is killing him.
I run baler instead of stacker.
He keeps the moisture tester.
Brother and helper fix baler. The baler shows up with four rows left. I look at moisture tester, it is reading high.
Finish field anyway. There are supposed to be thundershowers.
At nine p.m. I think have enough stacking for four hours.
I break the stacker at 10:50 pm,
I will never get Muddy Valley baled.
There are still more things that can break. Perhaps we will see them all....
If I only had a confederate flag to fly. I know that annoys all the people I hate so perhaps that would be worthwhile.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

I avoid

Tips for avoiding people who want you to interact.

1. Let your voicemail fill up and never listen to messages. If they really wanted something they would have texted you.

2. Leave your tractor somewhere noticeable with a flat tire. People are nicer too you when they think you are suffering.

3. I don't know. I have work to do...

Here I am backing the stacker into a barn exactly the same width as stacker.
Also the same height.

Titan radials are crap. Don't buy them.

I had a nice hamburger for lunch...
Came from Uncle jacks bbq. 

Sunday, June 21, 2015

On schedule, crappy hay, random comments

As par the course...
The New Holland 1411 disc mower scattered yesterday afternoon. Scattered and caught the field on fire. When there is danger of fire in your hay field you know it might be just a tad on the ripe side.
The constant velocity driveline came apart. I checked it before he left to mow. He said he noticed a vibration and shut it down to check the vibration out. Did not see a problem. Started it up again and it flew apart.
Glad I was not there. "Hey, start it up and I'll watched it," were the his last words before being impaled by a flying chunk of hay mower...
Busted the shaft off the gearbox as well.
Naturally, there is no New Holland dealer that actually stocks this stuff, even though this a current model of mower, and it will be at least three days away when I order it Monday.
That will be a couple grand in parts.
My Aunt died. She had dementia pretty bad.
The neighbor I stack hay for offered me his mower Monday. If I take it I will have to admit that I stacked all his hay instead of doing my own hay and he will realize mine is kind of over ripe and I won't be able to talk him into buying my hay. If he sees it in the bale it will look fine. If he sees the field before I cut it I'll get a comment about getting stuff done.
I'm not a good manager.
I also broke the baler. I can see the broken bolt but I think I will have to disassemble the whole front of the baler to get a drill in to drill the bolt out. Need a right angle 1/2" drill.
While everything was going wrong I was having a nice chat with the retried gentleman whose daughter talked me into cutting their field of hay.
The hay was not too bad and the fellow likes to chat.
His daughter used to get the Daily Strumpet newsletter and he read it cover to cover. He would like it to be revived. Back in the day, I didn't think he really liked me.

In the news...
I looked at the Daily Mail this morning...
The Bitcoin guy got life in prison. That is pretty much the way our justice system works. Absolutely no intelligence and no perspective.
-A couple points: The Dread Pirate Roberts comes from the movie, "The Princess Bride." It is a key point in the movie that Dread Pirate Roberts not always the same person. The title is passed from one person to another and the image of the Dread Pirate is more than reality.
-The Feds claim he tried to hire a hitman to get rid of a drug selling rival. That is a pretty typical sting by the Feds. Probably a set up. Feds will try to set you up to rack up the charges. Talk you into a crime so they can bust you. Like packing a van full of something and parking it under a great public building...
-He is supposed to have made millions but yet he doesn't appear to have millions.
-He was supposed to be the Dread Pirate Roberts
-He was doing computer stuff. No one in LE understands computer stuff.
-The gubment just made up a bunch of crap and pinned it on the guy with the least resources to defend himself. Dread Pirate R may or may not still exist and may never have existed. But we have headlines that show that folks in da gubment are "ciber experts"
All the real experts are either working for Google or hacking your credit cards and blaming it on North Korea...

The crazy guy who shot up the Church.
I first suspected the gubment mind control projects but he didn't really just snap and then not seem to understand what he did. Perhaps they "groomed him"
I really see no reason for him to target the Church other than to further the anti-gun, white vs blacks, vilification of the Confederacy, agenda of the clever folks who run everything.
Plus, he had black friends.
It is predictable and frustrating that the blame is placed on "racist websites," guns, the battle flag of the confederacy. All of those things should be banned.
-There is no safety valves in our society. You can't go over the rocky mountains, go to the New World, can't drive fast, can't blow up old refrigerators, can't tell racist jokes, can't get a good job. But, you can take widely available prescription drugs and the value on human life is so small that it is but a small step from the disliking the Negro to shooting up a church.
I don't understand it.
We constantly devalue human life, drone strikes, torture, endless war, graphic movie and TV violence, crazy Islamic beheadings, video games, cops shoot everybody in sight (accidentally) and then we laugh at Christianity which values the individual human soul. People are not programmed as children with values not to kill, not to steal, not to lie. And when rules of society are broken there is no redemption from sin.
-There is no leadership in our society. The crazy shooter needed a group to belong to. He thought he was a hero and standing up the the white race. Instead he provided the clever folks with the opportunity to tighten the screws just a little more.
-The crazy shooter was left on his own to find an answer to real issues. Now it is just "racism" and his  points will not be addressed.
-If there was an opposition group with actual leadership, whose first response was not Mitt's, "take down this Flag, South Carolina," then crazy nuts with more passion then sense could be guided into reasonable forms of protest.
I suspect that White vs Black issues are inflamed to keep us from coming together and developing real political power. I doubt that Black Folks are any more happy about their young people turning to crime than White Folks are thrilled with tattooed nutcase white tweeter kids stealing everything that isn't nailed down and then having spectacular car crashes.
I get into a lot of conversations selling hay and everyone is frustrated. We are not a nation of leaders. Every single organization is run by idiots. Sensible leadership is an exception rather than the rule...
And that is the extent of my rant.
Grandpa is now wandering around the house and I've got to guide him to breakfast!
Have a happy day... No proofreading on this post!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Talking oneself into going to work

I've been sitting in this chair for 25 minutes... I gotta go...
Last night I baked a log with the NH BC5070 small baler. Broke shear pins I didn't know it had.
The center knotter quit on the hessto 4690. It needs new knife arm, bill hook, bill hook pinion, twine disk, twine disk pinion. That's gotta be a couple hundred or more.
Of course my neighbor has also been baling steady with two balers and I have to get him caught up.
Not feeling the energy this morning, crappy hay that won't sell, antique farm equipment.
My daughter and nephews are taking a tractor safety class at the high school.
The instructor was roll over protection requirements on tractors post 1983.
She said her cousins looked at her and they just started laughing... Nothing on this farm is post 1983!
I'm going to have her as about hand clutches today.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Another potentially awesome day!

I knew yesterday would be wonderful and so it was!
I rebuilt the a/c blower in the stacker after it failed in 91 degree weather instead of 94 degree weather!
I tested it twice...
When I installed it it sucked instead of blowing.
This was good! I removed the cover on the other side of the blower, (now called the sucker) and I had REVERSE circulation! Like reverse osmosis only with air! Yea!
And then Teddy called me that the rear tire on the baler/raker/mower tractor (only tractor we have left with 1000 rpm PTO) had deflated.
This was a good thing!
It did not deflate on HWY 99W in the middle of Amity!
It deflated right next the the highway so perhaps all these people with 2.5 acre fields that want me to do their hay will figure out why I don't return their calls.
Those almost new GoodYear Titans were junk anyway and would have failed. Might as well get it over with now.
Plus, this will give time for my daughter's sunburn to heal. No more raking for a week!
It's a great life!
Edit: More reasons to be happy! If that tire wouldn't have blown I be just a hay-cuttin fool. Zipping up and down 99w cutting half acre patches and putting the really little guys to shame!
When I took the a/c out of the stacker I found my missing snickers bar!
I lost it only five years ago. It has been just out of reach ever since. Bet it will go good with one of those random cups of coffe I see setting around!

Update #3
Should not have eaten that snickers. Or was it the coffee?

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

It will be another great day!

The temperature is going to drop but no rain!
I am so fortunate as last night, just as the temperature dropped, the air conditioning fan on the stacker filled the cab with aromatic smoke. This also was a benefit as the smoke should have killed all the funny moths that are hatching in the cab filter!
It was also good fortune that we found out why the power take off on the MM G1355 failed and the mower plugged up. After my brother worked very hard rebuilding the PTO in one day, I hooked the mower to the tractor (actually I hooked the tractor to the mower) and gave it a try.
Horrible grinding noises ensued.
This was good because it frightened away the annoying doves and caused the coyotes to hide.
It is also fortunate that it is the bearing on the bottom roll with the pulley and gearbox in the way because we needed to learn how to take the mower apart.
Now I am going to go stack perfect hay for my neighbor who was able to cut his hay early. This is good because if I had good hay I would get all "high and mighty" and snub my neighbors. Cause that is just the way I am...
I think that later, I will improve my outlook by calling the guy who saves money by not fertilizing his hay field and who can't find anyone else to do his precious hay and tell him I am now another couple days behind.
Perhaps I'll also call MuddyValley and encourage him to smoke a cigar in what is now probably his field of straw.
Yup, I saw a TV special on having a positive attitude and I'm gonna have one!

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The last of MuddyValley's hay...

Cut the price by $70 per ton. It went to Canada! Who would have thunk...
Started at 4:50 am to beat the heat and so driver could beat the traffic in "stupid town." (Seattle)
A regular truck hauls eight blocks made up of 56 bales per block. Somehow this fellow squeezed in 11 bocks. Not quite sure how. Those Canadians are resourceful folks, eh Ralph?

Monday, June 8, 2015

A plan and useless trivial information about my weekend.

Over the weekend I've formulated a plan. It wasn't much of a plan but a plans is helpful...
I'm going plant the Sudan grass this morning.
Finish the little corner of the hay field that is left with the swather we left in the field for a year.
Put Teddy to work on the baler.
Hope my brother has time to rebuild the extra PTO for the MM G1355.
Put the stacker back together.
Ask the fellow I'm supposed to plant for to reschedule.
Move the two silage choppers that I purchased six months ago and left at the person's farm until they were so tired of looking at them that they delivered to our farm themselves.
The two silage choppers and the totally worn out pickup I just purchased because it has A/C and good tires that will fit my four-wheel drive farm truck. Not one of my better ideas.

Go to my daughter's eight grade graduation.
Worry about tomorrow, tomorrow...
Church was good on Sunday. Daughter and I went. The pastor took on a delicate subject, and gave it a little different perspective. I'm not going into it here...
After Church I watched father-in-law while wife and daughter went to town. Mostly FIL went to sleep in front of TV.
I debated about going to visit my father but then decided to take daughter to the river instead.
I was too cheap to buy the second kayak so we took turns between kayak and inner tube.

My inner tube sank. (of course)
We attempted to paddle the kayak upstream through rapids and discovered that was impossible.
We attempted to roll the kayak and recover from tipping it over. This was a failure. I don't know how the Eskimos do it cause I would drown.
We decided that both of us could fit into the one kayak and went down river. I hit my daughter in the head with the paddle and tipped they kayak over, again...
She took the paddle away from me.
Getting back upstream was a bit of a problem.
I fell out again and so it was decided that she would paddle and I would push.
I did intend to go visit my father but suddenly we realized it was 8:30 p.m. and the afternoon had turned to evening.
So we went home and watched house hunters in Florida on FIL's direct TV.

I'm now going to go plant something...


Sunday, June 7, 2015

A Sunday of disjointed thoughts

Thought one: I grew up reading stories from the past.
I liked the USA much better in those stories.
It is easy to dismiss the people who now run this country as I-dots, but sometimes it is helpful to understand why things happen and the philosophy that influences our lives.
If is very difficult to relate education to real events. I never understood algebra but yet I am now using it. I still don't understand it but I do appreciate the need to understand it.
Likewise you don't see the point of philosophy class because it doesn't relate to everyday life, but once you see how ideas can influence your daily life then an understanding of philosophy can put a name to your frustration. If also helps you predict the ruin that is to come...
(Click Here to read Selfevidenttruths)

Thought number two: (probably a crappy idea) This man would be shot and arrested but in the days when American's had character, he became a national hero. (Click Here To read about my favorite Emperor)

Thought number three: Zeta Woof brings up a good point, I probably should proof-read... What is less offensive, being anatomically correct or being grammatically correct.

Thought number four: I don't want to attend church today. The new chairs hurt my back. I want to sing hymns out of a hymnal. I do not want to see fellow farmers. They will ask me how things are going and I will have to lie. I would much rather lay under a tractor, or make a caustic comment (get it? "lye")  However, I should attend church. I'm a little uptight.
I am now down to one working useful tractor. Two dead Whites, the 2-155 and the 2-135 (which has had a new engine sitting beside it for a year) and Saturday evening Teddy hit something with the mower and took the PTO out of the MM G1355.
I spent all day attempting to plant six acres of Teff with the No-till drill and the remaining 2-155. It was a failure. I planted two pounds instead of six pounds per acre. Teff is a tiny seed, sort of like sand. The difference between two and six pounds is hard to measure.
The Teff seed needs to be planted into a firm seed bed. The no-till drill made furrows with the seed pressed into the bottom of the furrow. I can't replant the field without repacking it because it will be too loose. So I must roll the field again.
I have one last grass seed planting job Monday.
But also need to repair two balers, put a PTO in a tractor, work on the stacker, plant six acres of Sudan grass which should have been done Saturday.
I also need to go visit my father in the old folks home which I also don't feel like doing.
My father-in-law has moved in with us.
The first two weeks he was fine. The last couple days something has gone off-kilter. (An actual term used to discuss dementia this is not) He has been spending a lot of time sleeping and using his spoon to play Phillip Glass tunes on his water glass and plate.
I miss my old church which I could attend and then visit my father. But attending my old church adds to the stress by reminding me of the low-level corruption and nepotism that is the rule of my denomination.
Which brings me to the other source of frustration. I took my daughter to her old school to see her friends graduate. I kept thinking of "I accuse," but should have thought of the parable of the guy who owed a debt and had it forgiven and then went after the guy that owed him ten cents.
This could be a whole post...
(Since I get hits every day from people looking through multiple google pages for references to Western M. School and I'm tired of deleting references I might as well embrace my discontent....)
I was listening to the Principal speaking and couldn't help but think. They fired the Bible teacher for leaving his door open and ruined his ability to get another job by officially labeling it Insubordination. But, the man who is now Principal gave a personal recommendation for the teacher who attended his church and who he knew had issues with young girls (I don't remember the details, the teacher in question is a really nice guy and was probably a juvenile when that happened), then after taking on that responsibility by recommending him, failed to supervise him in a known fault, which resulted in a sex abuse issue. So now the teacher is in jail, the school has a million dollar lawsuit and the man who should have known (or perhaps I should have said, took responsibility by being a reference/helping the person get a job and thus assuming responsibility) is now Principal.
Kind of interesting. There were people on the WMS school board who potentially/probably knew about the past issues as well. (which is not to say I don't think people should have second chances, I had heard about the past issues but did not tell anyone who I knew would have to report this as I like the teacher in question and believe that what you do as a kid does not absolutely set your course for the rest of your life...)
Of course everyone will deny everything and then jump on the victim or the whistleblower. Modern Christianity is only as deep as ones wallet...

Edit: you can pretty much pick out the point I go off the rails in this blog post.

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Actually I am laying under a tractor

For the last hour. Think I will take a nap. Hundreds of acres of hay await me. Turning from green to brown in the 90 degree heat spell.
The receptionist at my chiropractor thinks the end of the world is at hand.
I just think it is a normal hay season and I am less motivated.
I have been attempting to hook up the no-drill for the last hour. A fifteen minute job. Three more little fields to plant.
The will all fail.
Nothing like being the last rat off the ship... It might still float!

Have a nice day!

A flower! (See top photo)
Iphone blogging! Yeah! Wish I had an apple watch, bet that is Almost Useful...

Please leave comments! It is really easy!

You just type your comment in the text box below the post. You can be anyone you want.
And...Would the joker who keeps clicking "offensive" please leave an explanation ?!