Friday, February 22, 2013

Decoding Craigslist

I love Craigslist. It is a great place to find a deal on something you need or find things you want that you never knew you wanted. If nothing else, it provides great comic relief on days when you need a laugh because some of the junk people try to sell is hilarious!

I have created this handy decoder list to help people figure out the finer points of what is written in a Craigslist ad:

“Paid $XXX, will sacrifice for $ZZZ” = I paid too much for it in the first place

“Easy keeper” = Eats everything in sight, sometimes things that aren’t even food

“Friendly” = Hasn’t bitten anyone today

“Pet only, NOT FOR MEAT” = I feel guilty that I can’t keep it so maybe there’s a snowball’s chance in hell that someone will want to keep a 600 lb male pig for a pet.

“Forever home only” = Don’t worry it’s about ready to kick the bucket

“Free roosters, Pets only” = I believe in unicorns, too!

“Spirited” = Runs away a lot

“Flashy color” = That’s the only good thing I have to say about it

“Pasture-raised” = I left it in the pasture to fend for itself so now it is probably full of parasites, needs it hooves trimmed, and can’t be caught without the use of a helicopter and dart-gun.

“Pasture-bred” = I don’t remember what day the buck got loose

“MUST SEE” = Too ugly to post a picture of

“Registered but comes without papers” = Not registered at all

“Purebred Cross” = I don’t know WTF breed it is

“Purebred but not registered” = I swear both parents were at least the same species

“To good home only” = This makes me look like I care….but I don’t!

“Or best offer” = I’ve been trying to sell the damn thing for 2 years! I’ll pay you to take it!

“Easy to handle” = Yeah, once you catch him!

“No reasonable offer refused” = Please, PLEASE! SOMEONE TAKE IT OFF MY HANDS!

“Re-homing fee” = Price

“Good with kids” = Only bites/kicks every third kid it sees

“Husband horse” = Huge and ugly, smells bad too

“XX years old” = Add 5-8 years to XX

“Not for breeding” = It was a mistake when it was born so please don't let this monster pass on its genetics to another generation

“Willing to pay reasonable price” = By “reasonable” I mean dirt friggin cheap, or better yet free

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Chickens are a gateway drug!

It starts out innocently enough. You figure you’ll just get a few to try for recreational use. Heck, everybody’s doing it. You won’t even go full-force because you’ll just get a few hens, no roosters. There’s no commitment then, you can quit any time. You get a few eggs a day and everything is fine. But soon you find you don’t have enough eggs to satisfy your cravings for soufflĂ© and quiche. You can’t go to the store and buy eggs. They just don’t seem natural any more.

You make the leap and get a few more hens and someone gives you a rooster. Pretty soon the rooster is doing his job and the hens are setting on eggs. A couple of hatches of chicks occur and you find you have too many chickens. Now you’ve gone from recreational to production.  A few too many roosters get hatched and BAM! - You’re butchering chickens in your carport. 

Pretty soon chickens start to lose their excitement. You’ve got this whole egg and meat thing figured out. You start to get bored and begin to dabble in other livestock products. Someone gives you a few gallons of goat milk and you experiment with yogurt and ricotta cheese making. Its okay, you can quit anytime. It’s not like you own any goats. 

Then the cravings set in. Your friend’s supply of goat milk dries up and you get the shakes trying to choke down a cup of Yoplait. There’s got to be a better way. You find yourself surfing Craigslist while no one is watching looking for deals on goats. 

You buy a few pregnant goats and shove the chickens out to make room for the goats. All of the sudden you’ve got kids and milk running out of your ears. You’re desperate to move product. You start making under the table deals and gas station drop-offs to supply other lacto-addicts. 

Pretty soon you’re so hooked you have a permanent milk mustache. You start expounding on the benefits of raw goat milk to anyone who will listen. You become convinced that oppression of raw milk producers is all an evil plot by “Big Agra” to kill the little guy. Pasteurization becomes a dirty word. 

You love the goat milk and eggs but you start to think about other possibilities. If a glass of milk and some fried eggs is great, wouldn’t some home-grown bacon be just fantastic?? Besides, pigs can drink any extra goat milk so you’re kind of recycling. It’s called “synergy”. You start looking at other agri-combos to augment the farm. If pigs are good, adding some cows would be better. A few beef cows would really up the annual meat yields. Maybe a sheep or two so you can start making your own yarn. Why should we pay “Big Cotton” to make all of our clothes when we can do it ourselves?? 

And on and on it goes until you get fired from your job because you spend 7 hours a day at work on small farming forums and reading farming blogs. Your boss got tired of you calling in from work with a lame excuse like your goat is having babies or your chicken is sick. Plus your coworkers didn’t appreciate you coming in smelling like a barn all the time. You get pulled over by the cops for towing a livestock trailer with one working tail light and no brakes. Friends stop calling you when you don’t answer the phone because you are always in the barn. You spend more money on grain and hay than on your own groceries. You become known around town as the “Crazy Goat Lady” or the “Crazy Chicken Lady”.

Monday, February 4, 2013

The part that sucks...

The part that sucks is when you try everything you know and still fail...

The part that sucks is when you give your heart to an animal that won't live as long as you will...

The part that sucks is when you have to pick up the pieces and keep moving for the sake of the rest of the herd...

The part that sucks is when you push yourself to the edge and find the grass isn't greener on the other side...

The part that sucks is that all the work invested will never equal product received...

The part that sucks is that there's never going to be another one like the one you lost...

The part that sucks is that you finally realize that you are powerless to stop an out of control situation...

The part that sucks is that you would have done it all over again in a heartbeat.