Monday, March 29, 2010


Today was not a great day. It really was not a bad day I just did not get much accomplished. The wind howled all day but at least there was some rain over the last 24 hours. I went out and drove tractor shredding ryegrass last night until 2 a.m. so I was dragging butt a bit today anyway. The tractor I am using is my brother in laws and is really nice. Great stereo, good climate control and I like the way the controls are set up. The downside is this tractor has a cupholder and plenty of room on the floor of the cab for a small cooler. I am sure the guy who invented the idea of putting a cupholder in a tractor had good intentions. As I dealt with this last night it made me think of some inventions that are good and some not so good.

Even a great inventor like Thomas Edison had some failures. Mr. Edison had 1093 different patents and apparently often worked day and night on an idea until he had it perfected. A really obscure thing that few people know is Mrs. Edison invented the battery operated personal massage device after many nights of Thomas not coming to bed. One of his failed inventions was furniture built of concrete. Apparently he did not feel the need to ever move or had lots of muscular friends with heavy duty pickups.

When I travel I often ask people what they do for a living as an opening to conversation. I worry that someday I will meet a guy that says, “Oh I am a wealthy retired inventor.” Then I will ask him what he invented and he will say, “I invented the three string hay baler.” At that point the retired inventor will be getting his ass pummeled by a cowman that thinks a 120 pound plus hay bale is about the worst idea ever. Sometimes an idea is good but executed poorly. As an example I will cite pie. Now pie is a really good thing and I am grateful to whoever had the idea. What I don’t understand is why pie pans are so damn shallow? Is the really any reason a pie could not be as thick as an Angel food cake? Now there is an idea combining cake and pie, what would be wrong with a 3 layer pie? No need to mix the strawberry and rhubarb anymore just stack them up. Hell, just add a third layer of vanilla icecream with crust in the middle.

Maybe it is not really the guy who invented the cupholders fault. After all it probably wasn’t him who decided that aluminum cans for both soda pop and beer should be the same size. I like the invention of large coffee mugs with a tiny circular base that fits it a cupholder for a vehicle. This way you get most of the coffee drank before you put the massive mug with the small base on something like a table, pickup hood or three string haybale where it will invariably spill for lack of balance.

Sometimes one invention will spur another. Everyone always hails the invention of the wheel but I am not impressed. If you do not have 4 wheels with tires and a good spare and a decent pickup to put them on what good would a wheel be? As I thought about the invention of one thing spawning the invention of another I pondered a deeper thought as I bounced the tractor across the pasture. Which do you think came first; exotic dancers, tattoos, Chinese characters or clear plastic high heels? I obviously need some sleep.

Today’s real environmentalist species found on the ranch is the Cinnamon teal aka Anas cyanoptera.

Today’s picture is cow 5906g feeding her calf some lunch in the tricale field.