The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

The Wisdom Of BarnyardBruke: "LEAP YEAR, OATS SOWN, and the cow theory"

Greetings to everyone in western Illinois.

With today, February 29, be'n the day of leap year, any special occasion such as birthday, etc., won't be celebrated again fer another three years.

Leap year contains 366 days, or one day more than the ordinary year, to offset the difference in length betwixt the ordinary year and the astronomical year.

Leap year, as it goes, is every year whose number is exactly divisible by 4, as in 2012, except century years not exactly divisible 400, as in 1900.

You can go to the coffee shop later today or early tomorrow morn'n and impress your buddies with your knowledge on them facts.

Here we are fast approach'n March, with it be'n only tomorrow, and February 2012 will be history. March, traditionally, is the month to sow your oats.

Most folk, few as there are today, sow oats as a cover crop for alfalfa hay.

Other folk nowadays seed their hay without a cover crop and seem to get along quite well. In do'n so they get extra hay in the year of the seed'n.

As fer those who use oats as a cover crop, they have a crop of oats to sell or feed.

The straw fetches a fairly good price these days and mixed with DDGS makes a good cattle feed.

Usually, a feller can gather at least one and sometimes two cut'ns of hay in the year of seed'n, if'n the weather man cooperates.

Oats, straw fed with DDGS, two cut'ns hay-that makes four crops in one year. Not a bad way of look'n at it.

Years ago, fellers would pasture their feeder cattle on their oat fields as part of their farm rotation. Before the days of extensive fertilizer use, it would build up the soil and was an excellent nutritional food source for feeder calves.

Today's $8,000-$12,000 per acre land sales and $300 cash rent changes the formula a little, I suppose!

If'n you are one of those seed'n oats this spring, don't get in to a big hurry early in March, even if'n the weather is ideal. March weather can change rapidly and todays good weather can be followed quickly by tomorrow's "Blizzard".

Seed is too expensive for those kind of mistakes.

Me "Paw" learned that fact years ago back in the early 40's.

As I told ya before, he carved with his pocket knife on the barn door:


Me "Paw" was not college educated, but he never made that mistake twice.

The barn door served as a reminder, both morning and night as he did chores, as long as the barn stood. He didn't need a fancy computer or IPAD to communicate the message back to him.

After March oats seed'n comes April corn plant'n. And ya knows that's just not too far off! I'm a hope'n all you farmers is a lay'n plans for a good spring plant'n time. Spring busy work is just around the corner.

Now that ya have paid your farmer taxes, ya had better hold fast to a good plan as a means of fund'n "Uncle Sam's" tax bill.

If'n ya has paid no taxes, it would be well to prepare for an audit, fer "Uncle Sam" and his IRS agents, knows the state of today's farm economy.

Buster Jigs gave us boys an e-mail the other day called "The Cow Theory".

Before ya gets your shorts jockeyed up tight out of position over it, remember it is only some fellers way of ease'n the pain of his day by poken fun at ever one.

I think that feller was probably a "lifer prisoner" over in Fort Madison or Galesburg's prison. The cow theory goes as follows:

Political Science for Dummies (not college educated)


You have two cows. Your neighbor has none. You feel guilty for be'n successful. You push for higher taxes so the government can provide cows for everyone.


You have two cows.

Your neighbor has none. SO?


You have two cows.

The government takes one and gives it to your neighbor.

You form a cooperative to tell him how to manage his cow.


You have two cows.

The government seizes both and provides you with milk.

You wait in line for hours to get it.

It is expensive and sour.


You have two cows.

You sell one, buy a bull, and

build a herd of cows.


You have two cows.

Under the new farm program the government pays you to shoot one, milk the other, and pours the milk down the drain.


You have two cows.

You sell one, lease it back to yourself and do an IPO on the 2nd one. You force the two cows to produce the milk of four cows. You are surprised when one cow drops dead. You spin an announcement to the analysts stating you have downsized and are reducing expenses. Your stock goes up.


You have two cows.

You go on strike because you want three cows. You go to lunch and drink wine. Life is good


You have two cows.

You redesign them so they are one-tenth the size of an ordinary cow and produce twenty times the milk. They learn to travel on unbelievably crowded trains. Most are at the top of their class at cow school.


You have two cows.

You engineer them so they are all blond, drink lots of beer, give excellent quality milk, and run a hundred miles a hour. Unfortunately they also demand thirteen weeks of vacation per year.


You have two cows, but you don't know where they are. You break for lunch. Life is good.


You have two cows.

You have some vodka. You count them and learn you have five cows. You have some vodka. You count them again and learn you have forty-two cows. The Mafia shows up and takes over however many cows you really have.


You have all the cows in Afghanistan, which are two.

You don't milk them because you cannot touch any creature's private parts. You get a $40 million grant from the US government to find alternatives to milk production, but use the money to buy weapons.


You have two cows.

They go into hiding. They send radio tapes of their mooing.


You have two bulls.

Employees are regularly maimed and killed attempting to milk them.


You have one cow.

The cow is schizophrenic. Sometimes the cow thinks he's French, other times he's Flemish. The Flemish cow won't share with the French cow.

The French cow wants control of the Flemish cow's milk. The cow asks permission to be cut in half.

The cow dies happy.


You have one black cow and a brown cow. Everyone votes for the best looking one. Some of the people who actually like the brown one best accidentally vote for the black one. Some people vote for both. Some people vote for neither. Some people can't figure out how to vote at all. Finally, a bunch of guys from out-of-state tell you which one you think is the best looking cow.


You have millions of cows.

They make real California cheese. Only five speak English. Most are illegal. Arnold likes the ones with the big udders.

Well, there ya has it.

I'm a gonna have to reflect on them thoughts for a spell. Meanwhile, you fellers and women have a good week come'n up, and see you'ns in church Sunday morn'n.

Keep on Smile'n

Catch ya later

Barnyard Bruke