"Home is the place where, when you have to go there, they have to let you in."

-- Robert Frost

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Farm Factions

Ah ...  the conversations overheard at the watering hole regarding market animals and the teens who own them.

In the early light of the morning, my children and their friends gathered with buckets and pails, a little Tail & Mane, and a high powered hose strong enough to spray the tail feathers off a turkey... or poo off an underbelly.  Whatever.

They're poultry kids, see, sharing a long house barn with the goat kids.  That's right, I said goat kids.  

When I first heard of market goat, I high tailed it down to the local super market, sidled right up to that butcher and asked where the goat section was.  He looked at me like I'd been living too long in a van down by the river.

Who eats meat goats anyway?  I haven't been able to figure that out in all these years.  Not even really sure what you would make it into.  Goat lasagna?  Goat burgers?  When goat gas interrupts your after dinner solitude, do you gracefully put your hand to your mouth to stifle that burp and apologetically beg forgiveness, "OH!! Pardon me!  That goat I had for dinner just isn't sitting well at all!!"

Nevertheless, poultry kids and goat kids ... they seem to hang together by virtue of their barn proximity and in the cool morning breeze, they sat hob-nobbing whilst whitening feathers and fur with grandma's bluing. 

I was searching for our own wash buckets gone missing, and caught snippets of the conversation as I ventured in and out.

"Now those rabbit kids," one said, "look at them over there.  They go in and out of their fancy-shmancy, air conditioned barn all day.  Noses in the air.  Too good for the rest of us.  What kind of kid eats rabbits anyways?  Elitist bunch of snobbish misfits."

"Oh, yeah?  Well have you smelled the hog kids?" replied another, "NEVER gonna get that stink out.  I'd die if I were a hog kid."

This was beginning to sound like high school  ... the jocks, the nerds, the misfits, the bullies.

"Been hit in the face with the shaving cream passing through the cattle barn, yet?" one asked.  All heads nodded.  There's not much association there, as those cattle kids are the oldest of the bunch and hazing just seems to come second nature.

I spotted our buckets over by the sheep barn, retrieved them and returned to our group triumphant. "I found them!" I declared, "Looks like the sheep kids borrowed our stuff."

"That's it! Those sheep kids are cheats and thieves!" came the cry to arms and I thought it best to intervene before physical friction erupted amongst these farming factions.

Simmer down kids.  Sounds like there needs to be some unification.  Perhaps on my night to cook dinner for the entire club, I'd best serve a farm animal paella.  Nothing like food to bring folks together.  A little bit of chicken, some beef, a rabbit or two, with some goat thrown in for good measure, all wrapped up in a big ole slab of bacon.

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