cropped-cropped-20140506_152255_android.jpg

I need your feedback

So, I recently attended a Champions of Dairy workshop in the Windy City.

It’s good to go gather with industry professionals to talk and learn about all the fun interesting things dairy producers are doing to promote the dairy industry. I mean, who knew I had to go to Chicago to be the registered dietitian from Hy-Vee in Mankato, a town just a few miles down the road from our farm.

During the workshops, I felt a bit…..I’m not sure what i felt. I wasn’t angry, happy, disappointed.

Confused maybe?

If you know me, you know I am very upfront about a lot of ideas and feelings.

If you have a piece of food sitting smack-dab in the middle of your chin, you can bet I will tell you Mr. Pizza Bit is taking all the attention away from your beautiful face.

I mean, really, if you come upon someone that has a Pizza Bit on his or her face, that’s all you can see while holding a conversation. You feel bad because you know he or she has absolutely no clue this horrendous, ugly bit is hanging around and being an attention-getting hog.You realize that if it were you that had that disturbing little bit of food on your chin, you would want to know.

I respect anyone that has the guts to say, “Hey Kerry, you have a huge smudge of ketchup on your left cheek.”

I say huge, because, with me there is no such thing as a small smudge of ketchup on my face. And it’s probably not just on my face, it’s more than likely also going to be on my favorite white shirt.

I trust people who can say it like it is.

So I was a bit confused by what I was learning at this workshop. Seems many of them think there are topics that should be avoided unless someone brings it forward.

We were discussing farm tours. We host so many visitors out here, I may as well purchase a tour bus and deck it out like I’m as famous as Tim McGraw and need a bus to match.

Imagine the bling! It gives me bling-ching…it’s a chill that makes me want to Bedazzle everything!

Anyway, during this workshop several farmers were telling their story of giving tours. They didn’t like to take people into their milking parlor, because cows poop in the parlor.

They don’t talk about treating a sick animal with antibiotics.

They don’t talk about boosting their economic base with the use of rBGH. (Although,we are considering not using this on our cows because it is becoming economically unfeasible. It’s very expensive to use.)

They don’t talk about cows that are lying on the ground and unable to get up.

That is, unless someone on the tour asks about these touchy subjects.

Aren’t all of these topics in the forefront? Don’t you, the consumer want to know exactly this type of information?

If you have ever been on a tour our here on the splendid grounds of SKH, Inc., you know I don’t mince my words.

I tell you we treat cows with antibiotics and I also show you how we segregate milk produced from those treated cows.

I tell you that you shouldn’t work on a dairy farm if you don’t like being crapped on while putting the milking unit on a certain cow. If you don’t like getting splattered with cow pee, don’t take a job harvesting white gold.

I also explain how we keep our parlor clean, even during the milking process with water hoses and pressure washing. We have to our milk inspector that comes unannounced says we have to…it’s the law.

I tell you that I drink milk from my bulk tank because I trust the milk that I am producing and I know I won’t get ill. I also tell you that you shouldn’t drink milk from my bulk tank because you don’t work with my cows. I have immunity from being splattered with aforementioned manure and such.

I am very transparent.

So what I am looking for is guidance from all my readers and from those that have been on tours on our farm.

Do you like that I am very transparent and that you get to see life on the farm as it is, or should I tame it down a bit?

What do, or did, you like about the tours we have given?

Please be gentle on Steve. I know he gives the extended version of tours and I give the quick tours, and that’s OK. Those of you that want details would thoroughly enjoy a “Steve Tour.”

Please give me your feed back. I have another tour coming up and I want to know how I should shape our presentation.

It’s a Debbie-downer kind of day

20150213_084923

This is me this morning after milking chores. It’s not always fun and frolic, sometimes it can be quite stressful working side-by-side with your husband. (This photo has not been Photoshopped, obviously!)

If you recall, last week (Well, I think it was last week.) Steve and I had placed a bet in the milking parlor regarding the quality of our milk.

He switched the teat dip we use on the cow before and after they are milked. Remember, the post dip smells like a Dreamsicle.

It still does and that color of orange that it is, well that’s enough to make a person smile every morning.

Well, it appears to me that I am winning the bet. I haven’t started counting my money jars and loose change at the bottom of my purse.

Even though I am ahead in the contest, I couldn’t be more frustrated.

I am the kind of girl that says, “Well, that’s not working. Let’s move on. Can we switch back to the iodine dips now?”

“No. I want information. We are waiting until the milk tester comes in 10 days to see what is going on,” Steve said. “If there are a bunch of new infections in cows, we will switch.”

That’s what I find so frustrating.

We’ve been through teat-dip experiments before and they all end up the same way.

To me, it’s blatantly obvious the foaming pre-dip and popsicle-like post dip are not working. The filter that keeps all the gobledy-gook out of the bulk tank was full of infection indicators. Those little indicators look like curdled milk.

Icky!

Through a piece of paper in front of me that contains a bunch of numbers and other information and it’s like my mind freezes up.

I don’t have time to analyze all that info.

We have tested the milking equipment and that has been adjusted accordingly. Apparently, the vacuum, which is needed to collect the milk from the cow and send it through the pipeline, was set a bit low for the speed at which our cows were letting their milk down.

Oh, they have little computers they can hook up to individual units that measure all the intricacies of a milking unit.

If you thought milking was just about putting a unit on the cow and chatting or discussing the low down on politicians, children and supper, think again.

That was the old days; back when Steve and I were young. Now we are old and there is no time for standing around in the milking parlor.

So, here it is mid-experiment, I have to deal with 10 more days of cows getting mastitis.

And that directly affects my personal goal of keeping the quality of our milk well ahead of where it is right now.

You see, it’s not all fun and laughter out here on the farm.

It’s hard working with your spouse, especially when two people have such different personalities.

Every day I find myself trying my hardest not to get into a full-blown “discussion” with my favorite man in the whole wide world.

So this morning, he went his way.

And I am going mine.

Steve, Russell, our herdsman Zachery, my father and several others are working on cleaning out the compost barn. This involves two full days of moving compost out of the barn and spreading it on the field.

Our compost is amazing. Not only does it have a ton of food for this next year’s crops, it doesn’t smell all that much either.

Oh, living on the farm place allows one to totally appreciate the smell of organic fertilizer.

Those that live around the field where that fertilizer is spread can hardly smell anything.

Believe me, that is a relief to Steve and I. We don’t need to upset our neighbors.

We do our best to keep them all happy.

It’s a Debbie-Downer kind of day

20150213_084923

This is me immediately after milking the cows this morning. It’s not always fun and games being a dairy farmer. Today I am frustrated. Continue reading to see what’s up in my world.

If you recall, last week (Well, I think it was last week.) Steve and I had placed a bet in the milking parlor regarding the quality of our milk.

He switched the teat dip we use on the cow before and after they are milked. Remember, the post dip smells like a Dreamsicle.

It still does and that color of orange that it is, well that’s enough to make a person smile every morning.

Well, it appears to me that I am winning the bet. I haven’t started counting my money jars and loose change at the bottom of my purse.

Even though I am ahead in the contest, I couldn’t be more frustrated.

I am the kind of girl that says, “Well, that’s not working. Let’s move on. Can we switch back to the iodine dips now?”

“No. I want information. We are waiting until the milk tester comes in 10 days to see what is going on,” Steve said. “If there are a bunch of new infections in cows, we will switch.”

That’s what I find so frustrating.

We’ve been through teat-dip experiments before and they all end up the same way.

To me, it’s blatantly obvious the foaming pre-dip and popsicle-like post dip are not working. The filter that keeps all the gobledy-gook out of the bulk tank was full of infection indicators. Those little indicators look like curdled milk.

Icky!

Through a piece of paper in front of me that contains a bunch of numbers and other information and it’s like my mind freezes up.

I don’t have time to analyze all that info.

We have tested the milking equipment and that has been adjusted accordingly. Apparently, the vacuum, which is needed to collect the milk from the cow and send it through the pipeline, was set a bit low for the speed at which our cows were letting their milk down.

Oh, they have little computers they can hook up to individual units that measure all the intricacies of a milking unit.

If you thought milking was just about putting a unit on the cow and chatting or discussing the low down on politicians, children and supper, think again.

That was the old days; back when Steve and I were young. Now we are old and there is no time for standing around in the milking parlor.

So, here it is mid-experiment, I have to deal with 10 more days of cows getting mastitis.

And that directly affects my personal goal of keeping the quality of our milk well ahead of where it is right now.

You see, it’s not all fun and laughter out here on the farm.

It’s hard working with your spouse, especially when two people have such different personalities.

Every day I find myself trying my hardest not to get into a full-blown “discussion” with my favorite man in the whole wide world.

So this morning, he went his way.

And I am going mine.

Steve, Russell, our herdsman Zachery, my father and several others are working on cleaning out the compost barn. This involves two full days of moving compost out of the barn and spreading it on the field.

Our compost is amazing. Not only does it have a ton of food for this next year’s crops, it doesn’t smell all that much either.

Oh, living on the farm place allows one to totally appreciate the smell of organic fertilizer.

Those that live around the field where that fertilizer is spread can hardly smell anything.

Believe me, that is a relief to Steve and I. We don’t need to upset our neighbors.

We do our best to keep them all happy.

(I know I promised a story on my construction project here at home – still working on it. Will share soon. Patience is a virtue and is one that i don’t possess!)

High stake bets in the milking parlor

One of our most curious cows has earned the name Snoop Dog!

One of our most curious cows has earned the name Snoop Dog! (Old photo, Snoop is no longer with us.)

 

Steve and I have a huge bet laying out on the line.

Whomever loses the bet has to take the other person out to supper at
George’s Fine Steaks; plus pay the other person $100 on top of that.

I hope I win. I could use that money!

I don’t have that much cash lying around in the bottom of my purse. If I
counted the money hiding in all the black crevasses of my
bag, I would probably have 25 cents.

Here’s the dealio.

Two weeks ago, we switched our pre- and post- dip solutions.

Previously, we were using an iodine solution for both procedures.

The pre-dip was, and still is, designed to kill all the germs on the teat.

The post-dip was and still is, designed to disinfect the milk residue left on the teat after milking.

The post-dip also has an amazing emollient which keeps the teats nice and soft and in great condition.

Years ago, we tested our bedding to see exactly what kind of germs are in thriving in the moist warm sawdust and
we determined the iodine solution is the perfect solution to ending the live of nasty bacteria.

So, our new dip is made from peroxide. It’s kind of cool. Once we
dip the teat, it dip foams, in much the same way it does when it was used on fresh wounds.

Does anyone else remember, as a child, screaming bloody murder when your Mother
would come into the bathroom carrying the dreaded brown bottle of hydrogen peroxide to clean up a scraped knee.

I recall screaming so much it was like I thought my lower leg was
going to drop off as soon and the fizzing started. I also remember, after
settling down and realizing my leg was still
in one piece, thinking, “Man, this is really cool to watch. Can you put
some more on my owie?” I also remember that
consequent boo-boos also had the exact same scenario play out!

So, back to the cows.

They don’t scream bloody murder when I dip their sensitive teats in iodine. They don’t even flinch.

Well, most of them don’t; some do.

The pre-dip foams, I scrub the teats and then I dry them with a very soft,
light-blue microfiber towel.

We then post-dip with a very sticky, liquid orange post-dip. This dip is called a
barrier dip because it sort of seals off theopening on the end of the teat.

It smells amazing and if it was any thinner, we may be tempted to drink it, because it looks like and smells like a Dreamsicle .

So, since we have been using the new peroxide, we have seen an uptick in the number of cows that have sub-clinical cases
of mastitis. We know this because the milk tester came Monday and we have all the individual somatic cell counts for each
individual cow.

We also know the percent of the total cell count to the bulk tank milk
that each individual cow contributes.

I consider a cow that is less than 2 percent of the tank is subclinical – in my opinion.

A cow that is 9 or 10 percent of the tank should be looked at, possible treated and
her milk should be separated. More than likely, she is a clinical case and
may need to meat the butcher in the sky. (Misspelling intended!)

Since switching the dips, the number of new cases has increased by 50 percent and so
has the cell count. From a nice, acceptable average count of 180,000 per full tank of milk, the count has also risen more than double to an average of 270,000.

Drives me crazy! I hate having a cell count of 200,000-plus. It frustrates me every single day when I walk into the milking parlor.

So Steve and I were “discussing” our cell count Friday morning.

He wants to continue using the peroxide dip and Dreamsicle-orange post
dip.I want to go back to my trusted and effective iodine dipping procedure.

We had to negotiate.

I hate negotiating.

Steve has one month to prove to me that the peroxide will be an effective dip.That means, he has to maintain the cell count
we currently have and see very few new clinical cases.

I will then have one month to prove that iodine is the better option. I
have to prove that when we switch to the iodine, the cell count will drop and we will see a decrease in the number of new cases and new infections.

Yes, we will have the scientific data to prove the case one way or the
other. That’s why the milk tester comes 11 or 12
times a year.

I am going to win. If, and when, I win…I mean, I will rub it in like crazy.

When I lose…I will say nothing.

But just in case, I better get into the house and start contributing to my
change containers, so i can meet my possible $200 losses.

With age comes issues

Steve and I were a sight for sore eyes Tuesday morning while we milked together.

As we find ourselves getting older, we find that we are much slower at many things than we used to be when we were youngsters in our 20s.

Being tied down to the couch because of illness isn’t just a one day ordeal anymore. Heck, when we were young we still worked like mad when we were ill.

Hacking because of a cough, didn’t slow down the well-oiled machines we were.

A sprained ankle? Forget about!

Cast on the foot? Cover that baby with a bread bag.

We had to carry milking units between cows, throw feed to the cows using a silage fork-I miss seeing my biceps bulge – and unloaded 13 wagons of small-square bales one at a time.

Five loads with almost 200 bales on it were wimp-work for us.

Being out of our prime became very apparent this particular Tuesday morning.

Steve was feeling under the weather. His cold was throwing him under the John Deere tractor in our shed.

He finished milking with me and even helped finish all the chores after milking. He felt “good enough” to help with cleaning the manure out of the holding area. We put fresh bedding in the second barn.

His body allowed him to attend a meeting in the morning with the Farm Business Management lady.

He sounded like crap when he talked. His voice was all gargley. I told him he should not go to the teachers house; she probably didn’t want him spreading sick germs anywhere near her young children.

They had their meeting in the garage!

I can’t say too much.

I wasn’t in all that great of shape Tuesday a.m. either.

While milking, during his moments of cold-induced weakness, a cow kicked the teat-dip cup out of Steve’s hand. It flew toward the front of the cow, just out of arm’s length.

“Here, just a minute,”I said, “I will get it for you.”

I tossed the water hose, with a spray nozzle on the end, near the teat dipper. It’s very handy to use the handle on the nozzle as a hook.

Just as I tossed it forward, the cow kicked in the perfect direction to land her foot directly on the top of my arm.

This happens quite frequently in the milking parlor. Most of the time the 1800-pound beast will feel the uneven ground and step off my forearm.

No harm done.

It just so happens that in this particular melee, Steve was standing right next to me, and he gave this beast a shove.

He shoved her as hard as he could.

Well, if you don’t know cows like I know cows, here’s what happens when you push a cow.

She pushes back with all her might. When you stop pushing, she stops pushing. One time, an employee was pinned between a cow and a post and he yelled for me to help him. I just looked at him and calmly said, “Quit pushing her.”

She quit trying to turn him into a pancake and he walked away a little red in the face.

So…when my doting husband tried to push the beast off the love of his life, well she dug in – right into my forearm. and I mean she dug and tried extra hard by grinding her left hoof into my skin.

All I could do was scream, “Ow! Ow! Ow!”

My arm was toast. It felt like ground-up toast.

I have no idea what ground-up toast feels like, but my arm really hurt.

My right arm was out of commission. Steve was slower than molasses.

We were a sad sight, but with no other bodies them to help finish, we were stuck with each other gimping along.

It’s several days later and my forearm is the size of the sausage stick I saw in the deli case at Cashwise. It’s probably going to turn the same color too.

Age sure makes illness and injury a problem.

Till next time…HUGS!

This writing could be refreshing!

I announced my retirement from column writing, after 18 years.

Many, many people have asked me, “What are you going to do now?”

I think i may have come up with a little something.

This morning I wrote my thoughts on my blog “Getting Kerry’d Away.”

It was so refreshing to be able to use words like “pissed off” and “hell.”

That’s the real Kerry.

When I wrote for the small-town newspapers, I often had to censer myself. I couldn’t mention this store, because that store would get upset and pull its advertising. I couldn’t use naughty words, because the ears of some of my readers might not have stomachs for it. Words like “puke,” “shit,” and the “f-bomb” were banned. Well, I can understand the last two words being a bit offensive, but puke?

So I am going to focus on writing for this blog. When I have an urge to write, I am going to write. I better have some sort of portable electronics with me at all times. Thank goodness for the iPad Mini and the Samsung Galaxy S5. (I love technology.)

I hope you follow me. Besides, it’s free. I will also share my Twitter account and Instagram info at a later time. Right now my technology is all upstairs, and I am too lazy to go retrieve it.

Have a great Sunday!

This is twisted

So I am watching National Geographic this morning – it’s about the only time i get the living-room television to myself.

I don’t even know the name of the compelling show I was watching, but that is a mute subject. Although, I may have to contact them via the Internet to let them know I think there show listings online are totally wrong, or too difficult to find.

So I am watching this show about how hyena families – I really don’t like hyenas – have to survive in the big “bowl” out somewhere in the big masses of Africa.

Also living in the bowl are lions, wildebeest, water buffalo, butt-ugly vultures and countless other kinds of riff-raff.

During the show, I was getting disturbed by the atrocious hyena.

A poor, helpless water buffalo was stuck in some muckity-muck.

Well, it didn’t take long for those darn hyenas to have their noses and ears to the skies and they figured out the buffalo was an easy target.

Needless to say, being the ruffians that they are, they chose to start eating the water buffalo while he, or she, was still alive.

And they chose to start eating it from the ass-end. (I suppose this was the softest spot.)

The entire scene made my stomach hurt a bit. I mean, even though the water buffalo is not the cutest creature living in this “bowl,” that title belongs to the baby lion cubs, it did not deserve to be eaten alive.

I felt awful for the creature.

Then it hit me.

Why in the hell, doesn’t PETA protest against this type of behavior?

Instead they choose to rally against farmers because they twisted the tail of a cow to keep her from becoming a danger to the people around her.

There was a scene of a lioness laying in a dry area of the “bowl” and the flies were assaulting her wounds.

I am sure they were laying little fly eggs in her owies.

Why wouldn’t they be a little pissed off that nobody, not even the Aborigines, were saving the lioness and bandages her wounds.

Where is PETA WHEN YOU NEED THEM?

I don’t know! In their upscale, penthouse offices as this poor lioness dies in the middle of the cauldron?

 

Tainted milk happens

Even with rules regarding milking our cows, errors happen.

This morning an employee milked a treated cow into the pipeline – wait, she milked a treated cow and her milk went into the pipeline, not the cow.

It happens. I mean tainted milk happens, not cows going into the pipeline.

 

Oh, I should just start over!

We don’t get too upset when an employee accidentally allows tainted milk to get into the tank.

 

It still stinks that almost 9,300 pounds of milk will now be diverted to our waste water holding tank.

To put it into perspective the value 9,300 pounds of the milk is worth $2000. And that much less money into our coffers. And, according to popular belief we have huge coffers! Yes, I am going to go with that.

But you can’t change reality. Oh, if only a person could.

 

Laws forbid us from shipping that milk. I am not 100 percent sure if it’s federal law or state law. I just know the law is there to protect consumers. Did you know that they dairy industry is one of the most heavily regulated industries in the nation? We always have Big Brother breathing down our backs. It’s a fact of life. If you follow the rules, Big Brother is more like an ova before it meets a sperm. No big deal.
If we were to allow that milk to be picked up by the milk hauler and taken to the milk plant in New Ulm, our coffers would be entirely empty. Steve and I would have to purchase the entire tank of milk – about $10,000.

 

Ouch. I honestly don’t have that amount of money in my billfold or bank. I mean, not only do I have dust bunnies in the corners of my house, my billfold has dust jack-a-lopes.

 

Jack-a lopes with fangs.
We do make it a point to reassure our employees, when this happens, they do the proper thing by notifying us of their mistake as soon as they realize what happened.

 

It saves us from shipping the milk. It allows us to test the milk after the very next milking too, so we can be assured that no tainted milk will leave the farm. Calling us is the most responsible, and one of the most difficult, things an employee can do.
Why would we want to punish them?

New Things Excite Me

It’s been such an exciting Wednesday!

I love new things and Wednesday morning 12 brand-spanking new items installed in our milking parlor.

New milking units. Glorious. Blue. Sparkling clean! I love working in a clean parlor. Throw in 12 new super-clean milking units and there was no way possible I was going to be in a bad mood.

All I can say is this, “It’s about time.”

It has always been a huge goal of mine to produce the highest quality milk that we can on the farm. I probably write about it more than you care to read about it.

When I married Steve, I can honestly say, “Our milk quality was less than stellar.”

We had a somatic cell count that hovered around the 600,000 parts per milliliter. From what I have gleaned off the Internet, and the Internet is always true, one teaspoon equals 4 milliliters and one cup is almost 237 milliliters. One milliliter is one weensy-teensy quarter of a teaspoon.

When I put it like that it makes me think our old cell counts should have been in milk as thick as Mod Podge. Thick and gooey.

Rest assured, it never was.

We have successfully lowered that number to an average of 140,000 parts per mil.

I have been hounding Steve for years that we need to replace our milking units in the barn. I thought our cows would milk out better, which would improve milk production and quality.

The actual milking units are 10-years old, as of this past summer. It hardly seems that long ago that we built the milking parlor. It’s like the stove I can see as I stand here at my standing desk. It seems like just yesterday we purchased that stove, a dishwasher and a refrigerator with the money we received when we sold our trailer home.

That was 20-years ago. The stove is the only appliance that hasn’t worn out. The kids will say, “Well, duh, Mother. That’s because you never use it!”

That’s a lie.

So back to the uneven milk out of our cows. One quarter would still have milk coming out of it and the remaining three would be getting pulled inside out. (That doesn’t really happen.)

That’s bad when that happens. The three teat ends on the quarters which are done milking will get damaged.

It’s called keratosis. Quiz later. In a facility such as ours, teat ends are a high priority.

When they are damaged we get many devastating cases of mastitis.

Been there. Done that. Don’t want to go back.

As of late, we have had many cases of mastitis in just the left-rear quarters on many of our cows.

It was odd and we had a heck of a time trying to find the reason. One milking unit was to blame because it had a hairline fracture that I could barely see. The people we hired to come analyze our parlor setup and procedures found it.

Maddening.

While the dudes from Bou-Matic were here helping us find our issues, we were given a sales pitch on the new and improved milking units.

Every sales pitch involves new-and-improved product. Tractors, seed, computers, cameras, etc.

Steve bucked a little bit at the thought of spending several thousand dollars on new milking unit. But I know how to win him over. I gave him my best puppy-eyes and argued my point.

So now we have brand-new, cobalt-blue milking units being used in the parlor. We will spend the next few weeks fine tuning the vacuum settings on the units. (It can only be adjusted a little bit at a time.)

It’s going to be fun to see how this goes.

(P.S. It’s Steve’s birthday today! Wish him a happy birthday if you see him out and about!)

Everybody has a cause

Everybody has a cause.

Angelina Jolie is a supporter of peace around the world and works with members of the United Nations and regularly works with survivors of disasters that happen all over the globe.

Jon Bon Jovi’s cause is homelessness. He tries to help disadvantaged people affected by poverty fulfill their potential in this world.

Heck, even Prince Charles is required to be involved in some sort of charity work. His cause offers support by training, mentoring and providing financial assistance to help disadvantaged young people achieve their potential.

Many, many celebrities support that animal rights group that I refuse to name.

You know the one I am talking about.

I just don’t understand how people can be so ignorant when it comes to a cause.

I don’t even get mad when I hear about what this radical group is up to; I find it very frustrating. I used to get mad, but what is the fix for stupidity?

I don’t think we are ever going to do away with groups that really don’t understand what would happen should their cause become the norm.

I believe it would be more damaging to the environment to have every single soul on this planet become a vegan. I have nothing against vegans, unless they try to shove a broccoli floweret down my throat.

It would take millions of more acres to raise only plant-based food for all the people in the world. More tractors would be needed to work that land, which would contribute to global warming, which would lead to plants that cannot survive because of the heat. (Which reminds me that we would have to get cows to stop farting, because, apparently, that contributes to global warming too.)

Plants that cannot survive the heat with then have to be genetically modified.

The horror! Genetically modified organisms are bad, so we would still need more acres to grow food for the human population.

You see what I mean. It’s a never ending battle. It’s just one continuous circle.

I can foresee the population in 2000 years still arguing about all the very same things people argue about today. Do you suppose the world’s first civilizations argued about food?

That’s why I find the entire process to be so tiring.

When will it actually stop?

I still continue do my part in trying to prevent uninformed people from basing their decisions on poor science and ignorance.

A long time ago, I found this great site called 100 Days of Real Food. You may have heard about this, because as of late, the particular web author has been all over mainstream media.

I liked her site because of the recipes. I personally don’t like to purchase Spaghettios and factory-made, but totally-delicious, single-serve cakes. I find the cheese you squirt out of a can an abomination to the cheese world.

Squirting cheese will never appear in my cupboards, but I won’t stop you from spreading a Ritz with it, if you so desire.

That’s it.

I have to take up a cause. A cause so important to me that I will do whatever it takes to prevent another person from ever consuming or using that product.

Anyway, this real food web page I was following was promoting an anti-ag movie, which I have refuse to watch.

She had posted a comment on a certain movie she “finally” let her kids watch, because she felt her children were old enough to watch the slaughter of animals. Well, are my kids old enough to watch flowers opening up in the spring?

What kind of la-la world does this woman belong?

That was the end of a beautiful, but totally anonymous, relationship.

Well, I sent the author of the website a note stating how “I enjoyed her site because of the recipes, but due to a recent post I would have to discontinue my membership in her site.”

I explained that I was a dairy farmer and was offended by her promotion of a movie that contained stretched truths and fallacies.

Then I invited her to come visit my dairy farm.

She has yet to respond.

And I doubt she will. Maybe I should keep sending her an invitation.

So anyway, back to my social cause, I may not be as important as a celebrity, but every cause has to start somewhere.

How about Ban the Rat Terrier because they take care of all the cats on my farm?

I know. I am going to protest my cat bringing me live mice in the middle of the night. I mean, it’s so annoying when she plays with them at 2 a.m. I think I need to stop feeding my cat so she is actually hungry and will eat the little rodents.

How about squab? The delicacy that is 4-week-old pigeon and costs a measly $18 a pound. Have you ever seen a 4-week old pigeon? Why would a person want to eat that? Much less pay three hours of minimum wage (minus the taxes) to fill his or her stomach.

I think we should all help squab to become better pigeon citizens that live to their full potential – allow them to bloom into fine-feathered friends that are the messiest birds I have seen.

I may be on to something here. Some pigeons, mostly the cosmopolitan ones, become quite attractive as adult birds. Who knows, maybe that squab you ate for dinner would have been beautiful.

I have no problems with people taking up causes that benefit human beings. We all need a little help every once in a while.

I do have a problem with causes that expect us to treat animals as human beings.

For questions, or comments, e-mail me at kahoffman@newulmtel.net.

-30-