Wednesday, January 28, 2009

A Day in the Life...

Ya buncha greedy sunza...! Wha? My last post wasn't good enough for your finely tuned palates? Hmmmm???


Last Monday started out just like any other cool foggy day, except for one thing... it was my folks anniversary. Seeing how it was a semi-special occasion, my mom invited all of her family up for lunch. We were eating at noon.

Of course anybody who's ever had to get anything done before a deadline knows how this tale is going to go already, so I really should just stop now. However... I like to torture you all so you're gonna have to read the whole tale.

The morning was foggy, very foggy, but surprisingly it was fairly warm. A balmy 28 or so. So it was up early, eat a good breakfast and then head out to get the feeding done before the company arrived.

After breakfast, I went outside to get things started and let them warm up. Now by things, I mean the pickup loaded with hay, and also our tractor so that I could load some hay with it. Our tractors are not exactly what you'd call new. No... no pretty new shiny tractors for me. Don't get me wrong... I'd take one if it was given to me, but I lack the 100 grand or so it takes to obtain one.

Our tractor is a Farmall 560 circa 1955. You know the type... the kind that you'd see on some antique calendar somewhere. Metal seat, no fenders on the tires. But the main problem with these kinds of tractors, other than their age, is that they don't possess a cab nor a heater. It also means that you need to press a little button and activate the glow plugs to warm the cylinders up before it'll start.

I went out and fired up the pickup, no sweat. Then I walk up to the tractor... erm... why is the front axle leaning like that? Oh... it's got a flat tire. How typical... oh well... I can probably stretch the air hose that far and maybe it'll stay up for the few minutes it'll take to load the ton bales. So I stretch out the hose and... *whew* just reaches. So I pump up the tire.

Next I walk up to the glow plug button and wedge it on with a little lath that we've cut just for such an occasion.

While the glow plugs were doing their thing, I walked up to the barn and fed and watered a blind calf that we've been feeding and watering for the past few months. I say, "Hello Kid" and he comes running to eat.

So I walk back to the tractor and hit the starter button. The tractor turned over... and over... and over, but failed to start. That's not good. I wipe the frost off of the glow plug meter and... it's not on. I removed the lath and pressed the button by hand. Still nothing. Just what I needed.

So I set out to hotwire the glow plugs directly from the batteries.

I chased down some wire, and hooked it from the battery to the glow plugs on the engine block. The wire started smoking and melted from the load. It was a little warm, but not warm enough to start the tractor.

Eventually... I found a set of jumper cables and completed the circuit that I'd set out to. After a minute or so on simmer... the tractor fired up. Oh... all the time I was doing this, the air was hissing out of the tire, so I pumped it up again.

We fed all of the hay on the pickup, and then I filled the tractor tire again and loaded the pickup with ton bales. Fortunately, I didn't have to chase straw bales that day, so I got away with just pumping up the tire.

We finished feeding, albeit an hour or so later than usual, but the tractor problem... well... things like that just don't get better on their own, so I ran it down to my place and put it in the shop. Fortunately for us, we had another tractor in town, about 5 miles away, so the plan then became for us to go eat, entertain the company, and grab the other tractor the next day and use it instead until we got the 560 fixed.

But wait... there's more... next time, you'll even get to read about it.


Today's mystery lyric: (Remember the rules folks, no online searching of the lyrics, if you don't know it, you don't have the answer!)

All the feelings that I get
But I still don't miss you yet
Only when I stop to think about it...

Answer to last lyric: Rock and Roll Fantasy by Bad Company

Sunday, January 25, 2009

No Foolin'

Crikey! I just climbed out from under my rock and realized I have not updated this since you last visited... You would not believe the amount of people that are totally stalking me. Seriously!.

I am not going to post now with tales of sleeping my way to the top, planning my wedding, or just generally being not online in order to benefit society in general, my day seems to be completely packed from when the nightclubs close to the point that I run out of alcohol. I am not complaining though, but never say never.

I won't promise anything to you but I will update you with my nefarious activities as soon as I get a chance or at least until I need your shoulder to cry on. This for you, my ever faithful, devoted public..

This post brought to you by The Lazy Bloggers Post Generator


Today's mystery lyric: (Remember the rules folks, no online searching of the lyrics, if you don't know it, you don't have the answer!)

Here come the dancers 1 by 1,
Your mamma's callin' But you're havin' fun
You find you're dancin' on that number 9 cloud
Put your head together and sing it out loud

Answer to last lyric: Make it Real by the Scorpions

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Merry Frelling Christmas... the Sequel

It's time for the exciting conclusion... erm... ok... at least the lengthy conclusion of our harrowing tale. But first one of my famous recaps of the story so far...

Go read the last post.

There... Now... back to the story.

Since I was able to get the ol' gal up and moving, things were starting to look up. But there was still one problem. That little 35 mph breeze had blown a whole wad-o-snow onto the seat of the hoe. And without some sort of intervention... I would be left with a wet and snowy ass in no time. Given the windchill factor, that's not an appealing proposition. So I had to grab a plastic bag and make an urbane, yet functional seat accoutrement (That means a temporary seat cover PinTA... follow along please!). After that we were off like a terd of hertles.

I drove up to the snowdrift and dropped my bucket and took a scoop. Once the bucket was full, I jammed her into reverse and watched the driver wheels spin... I... uh... went nowhere, but on the bright side I was going nowhere fast.

It finally took off and then for the next 10 minutes or so I slid back and forth on the sheet of ice that was the blacktop, nearly winding up in the borrow pit at each and every turn. It was fun. When the neighbor got there... we decided that it'd be best to use the boom on the backhoe to try and pull the pickup back onto the road and we set out to do just that.

Five minutes and a broken chain later... we had a good firm hold. I revved her up and gave the boom all that her hydraulics could handle and things started moving. No... no... not the pickup, the entire backhoe slid across the ice to the pickup which was still very stuck in the borrowpit. Grrrrrrr. I blame Tiff for this.

Ok... I was already onto plan B, but was entirely out of options. The ground was too frozen and slick for anything I had. I looked up the road and my cattle were huddled in the corner, frozen snow on their backs, all humped up looking for some relief. This wasn't looking good.

Just about then... on Christmas day no less, the road grader showed up behind us.

We hooked the tow strap onto that sucker and I jumped into the pickup so he could pull me out. I gave the thumbs up and he jammed it into reverse... and sat there spinning out on the ice, going nowhere.

Whoo boy... I think we're in trouble now. So the driver sat there until he burned through the ice and eventually, with that little tug, I got back onto the road.

I shuffled all of my outfits back to the house and called my folks. I told them that the road was impassable, but the road grader was on it's way and when it got there, my dad and bro needed to come down and cut the fence and move the cattle across the road to my place. I was headed to town to load up with hay before the road blew shut again. Sounded like a plan.

I headed down the road, just about 20 minutes behind the snowplow and the road had already blown in behind him. At least 2 foot drifts, but I gave her hell and made it through, grabbed my load of hay, and came back and plowed through the drifts again. It was brutal, but the extra 2 ton on the back of my pickup allowed me to bust right through.

When I got to my house, my dad and brother were just getting the cattle out through the cut fence and so I started feeding the bales off and they ran into my field and gobbled it right up. Good thing too because it was quickly blowing away (I also blame Tiff for this).

After we got finished feeding my bro and I headed back to town to get loaded for the next day. At the very worst, we'd at least have some if the next day was horrible too. When we got down to the bad spot, he allowed that it was really not that good of a drive through that mile or so. I of course... already knew that.

We loaded up... busted back through the drifts for the forth time and went up to my folk's place. It was about 2:00 and my lack of breakfast and lunch were starting to catch up to me. But my nieces were ready for the exciting part of their day and wanted to open gifts sooooooooooooooooooo badly that we did what any good parent, uncle, and grandparents would. We ate lunch first and made them wait. :P

The rest of the day was uneventful and went off without a hitch. The next day was not exactly pleasant, but it wasn't bad and we've warmed up since and the 8 foot drifts on both sides of the road have been reduced to a mere pittance of what they once were.

Oh... btw... for those of you not catching the reference in the title (I blame Tiff for that too), watch this.


Today's mystery lyric: (Remember the rules folks, no online searching of the lyrics, if you don't know it, you don't have the answer!) *With bonus lyrics!!!*

Did you ever have a secret yearning,
Don't you know, it could come true.
Now's the time to set wheels turning,
Open up your life for you.

If you take life as a crazy gamble,
Throw your dice, take your chance.
You will see it from a different angle,
And you too will join the dance.

Answer to last lyric: Bang go the Bells by Babylon A.D.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Merry Frelling Christmas...

What is is with you people and your incessant desire for new posts? Go start your own blogs or something... oh right... you already have them... moving on...

The Bro and his girls were down for the big festivities and that means I was able to get away on Christmas Eve for my holiday shopping as is the norm. The problem was that there was a bit of the white stuff around here, and lots of packed and broken snow floored roads. Not only that, but my pickup had a flat tire. It's a dually, and the flat was on the outside dual, so it wasn't fatal, but I'd had them "fix" that sucker twice already! Every time I'd get home I could hear the telltale "hissssssss" still coming from the tire (I blame Tiff for this). Anyway... this time I found the frelling hole and marked it for a sure fix.

I drove the pickup to town to get the tire fixed (as well as the other stuff) and didn't get home until after dark. That meant I was unable to load the pickup with hay for the next mornings required labor. That's ok though... I only needed a couple of ton and I could throw that on in the morning.

During the night, there was a modest breeze. A mere 35 mph or so, but who's counting... Anyway... I woke up and called up to my folks place to see if they wanted to eat breakfast and do the festivities first or feed the minions. The girls were bouncing off the walls in anticipation, so the decision was made to put them out of their misery. Ok... I was on my way.

I got bundled up, put Mickey and Minnie on my feet and Elmer on my head and opened the back door. The wind? She was still a blowin'... The sun? Hadn't crested the mountains yet, but with the cloud cover it wouldn't have mattered anyway. I jumped into my pickup and headed up the road to the folks place.

The road was bare and icy, but the light was flat and I could see some snow blowing across the trail in front of me. About a hundred yards later... there was a weeeeeee snow drift, but in the flat light, I couldn't see it. With a puff and a grunt, my journey eastward came to an abrupt halt. This not being my first rodeo, I immediately jammed it in reverse and floored it backwards. The drift? She was beeger dan I tink... about 3 foot high and very crusty. Not only that, but it stretched up the road for about 50 feet.

As my eyes adjusted to the flat light (and I wished they wouldn't have), I could see a vehicle's tracks had broke the trail in front of me, only a little to the left of my course.

In a fit of what I can only consider insanity, I decided if they made it, I could make it, and then I looked up the road and saw a pickup stuck in front of me about half a mile. I knew I couldn't get past that point, but I didn't know who was trapped and decided I'd better see if I could get to them and pull them out.

I backed up and got a head of steam to bust through this mere inconvenience...

I didn't. I fought the law and the law won. In fact, it had it's way with me and threw me off into the borrow pit right next to the creek. Not being one to admit defeat, I tried to back up again, and slid further into the borrow pit. I... erm... uh... ok. Maybe I can pull forward and get out. I tried. I failed. I slid a leeeeetle further down even.

It's times like this when some have just got to admit defeat. Not me! I had a secret weapon back at my lair... that's right... my little ho. She's big, and she's fat, and she'd love to shovel me out. Or so I figured.

I tried to get out of my pickup... but the snow load was now blocking the door. I pushed through anyway. Me and the redhead walked back to my house and I called up the folks. I told them what had happened and that their road was completely blocked. I knew they'd never make it down to help out, so I went to wake the hoe. She was cold and sluggish just like I'd feared. I hit her with the juice and she rolled over but never would fire. So I drug the charger out there and hit her good. 200 amps worth of go-get-em. This time she couldn't stay in her slumber and belched out black smoke and roared to life. Ah-hah!

I called my neighbor to the west to see if he could help me, prying him away from his family. He was glad to help out... at least that's what he said anyway. So me and my hoe went up to dig the pickup out...

*tune in next time for the exciting... erm... well... the conclusion of our little tale*


Today's mystery lyric: (Remember the rules folks, no online searching of the lyrics, if you don't know it, you don't have the answer!)

When I want love, I call on you.
When I want love, I run to you.
Just something more, than a cheap romance
I just get one look at you...

Answer to last lyric: Balls to the Wall by Accept. Note the twin flying V's!