Sometimes life on the farm puts you in delicate situations where you are unsure of the correct ways of responding. I have compiled a list of said scenarios – many of which (but not all) have transpired here on the ranch. Take this short quiz to see how your responses stack up against my suggestions.
1) You are a hired man/woman and your boss gets frustrated when fixing the tractor during seeding, or combine during harvest and throws the wrench (or whatever is in his hand) into the bush. Should you:
A) Quietly go search in the bushes for it.
B) Lecture him on proper tool usage and storage.
C) Say nothing.
Answer: C) Say Nothing
This is a perfect time to file this moment in your memory to bring up during your annual tool budget discussion. Looks like it’s time to replace that MasterCraft wrench set with Snap-Ons!!
2) You are a grain farmer and you are at a public social function and a sales person for a seed company gets tipsy and says “Farmers in Canada don’t know how to grow corn. They don’t even know how to grow canola.”. Should you:
A) Drop your proverbial gloves, jersey the asshole and teach him what Canadian farmers know – with your fists.
B) Say nothing, walk away and never buy from that company again.
C) Smile nicely and walk away.
Answer: C) Smile nicely
Smile nicely and walk away. Wait patiently for the jackass to drink himself stupid, then snap some very un-becoming pics later on in the night. There is lots to smile about – looks like you are getting the deal of a lifetime on your seed next spring! I would share some pictures as examples, but then I would have to pay full price for seed next year…
3) You are a farm wife, and after working all day at your full-time job you take supper out to the harvest crew, and invite your mother-in-law along to see the grand-kids. After one bite of your casserole, dear MIL says “Oh. This is….. interesting. Let me know if you would like some of my field recipes”. Should you:
A) Slap her in the face and burst out into an emotional fit of laughter.
B) Smile nicely, take her recipes, and cook them ten times better than she ever has.
C) Avoid the entire situation. Let the bag eat at home.
Answer: B) Smile nicely
This is pretty self-explanatory, but please, if you ever choose A) let us know how it goes. This would be an epic story. Perhaps you are interested in a guest blog spot?
4) You are a conventional farmer and you go into the grocery store and see a sign that says “organic food is better for you”. Should you:
A) Rush out and grab the pickets signs you always carry with you and start an impromptu protest,
B) Furtively switch random packages of organic carrots and bananas with conventional ones, while giggling uncontrollably and cursing “those damn granola eating hippies trying to take over the world”.
C) Calmly talk to the produce manager about the danger of pushing one farming system over another, while commending them for offering a multitude of food options to their customers.
Answer: C) Calm discussion
Calm discussions with those in charge will get you farther ahead every time. Oh hell, who am I kidding. B) feels soooo darn good!!!
5) You are a farmer and are speaking on the phone with the Federal Government. They want to send you a tax refund\ag program kick-back asap. They ask for your mailing address. They do not accept post box addresses, it must be a physical address. They do not accept land locations. The person you are speaking to has never left Toronto and can’t comprehend that you live 10 miles south of nowhere. Should you:
A) Scream into the phone for her to get out a “God Damn Map”
B) Kiss the cheque goodbye. They were probably going to change the program before they sent it anyway.
C) Make-up an address using a combination of your Porn-Star name and your location
Answer: C) Made-up address
You know that even if you say your address is 666 Sassy Rugmuncher Way, the ladies at your local post office will make sure it ends up in your post box, and get a giggle or two at the same time.
6) You are a rancher and are sitting down to a family Christmas Eve dinner of beautiful prime rib. Your city slicker Sister in Law asks you if the beef is “Hormone and Antibiotic Free” because she doesn’t eat food “doused in chemicals”. Should you:
A) Flip the table and demand the witch leaves your house.
B) Tell her the beef is all-natural, the bread is gluten-free and you haven’t vaccinated any of your children.
C) Give same statement as in B), then pour a little glyphosate in her wine
Answer: B) or C)
Depends whether or not you have an open jug of Transorb handy…..
7) You are a ranch wife and you are sorting heifers and steers with your husband and your husband yells (for the third time) “I SAID F*€#ING HEIFER!!!”. Should you:
A) Go hunting for the electric cattle/husband prod.
B) Yell back “F*€k YOU AND THE HEIFER YOU RODE IN ON” and pout in the corner.
C) Calmly walk to the house, opening every gate that you pass.
Answer: C) Walk to the house
If you have not yet trained your husband in proper cow sorting communications, this is the perfect opportunity. Opening every gate you pass is for his benefit. By the time he has rounded up a few hundred head and attempted to re-sort them by himself, he will have time to reflect on how integral you are to the operation. Someday he may even laugh about the experience. Someday.
I hope you enjoyed my suggestions. As you come across these kinds of situations, please let me know how they turn out for you.
* No in-laws were harmed in the writing of this post*