One Empty Chamber


It’s back to the “bullet” format this week. I give five bullets
points that do not warrant a column on their own but together fill
the cylinder quite well.

Bullet One: Whenever I am in Thief River Falls,Minnesota and need fast food, I get a generous handful of mixed nuts from the vending machine at the Farm Service Agency building and a fifty cent soda from Fleet Supply.
I am consistently astounded by the generous handful of peanuts,
walnuts, pecans and almonds I receive from that little vending
machine and a fifty cent soda takes me back in time to a place where
you only hand to pay ten-fold for five cents of flavored and
carbonated water. These are two of my most coveted gustatory secrets
and have served me well. I typically eat at home so this little blast
of beneficial fat, water, caffeine and artificial flavoring gets me
through until I position myself in front of our refrigerator, door
open, and graze.

Bullet Two: I know there are those who write poetry about the beauty
of making hay thick enough with nostalgia that you can smell the
sweetness of the alfalfa and feel your head swoon. However, haymaking
has always engendered anxiety for me and the only anticipation it
creates is that of squealing baler bearings, untimely rain, twine
knotters that don’t and breaking metal shearing against its own
weight. This summer I am harvesting my hay with-a trailer. I
purchased hay this year and will haul it home behind my aging
pick-up. I prefer it to the beauty of arising early to gather forage
for my cattle, plus I get to sleep in a little. See you Sunday, Dick.

Bullet Three: If you thought this was the bullet where I would
mention the Casey Anthony trial, the State of Minnesota government
shutdown or some really important celebrity news; it is not.

Bullet Four: I will mention a few entertainment items here, however.
There is to be a new “Muppet Movie,” released this November. I have a
love for the Muppets goes back as far as Sesame Street. Our friend,
Nancy Thompson, does a fantastic Miss Piggy which makes me lonely for
felt-covered puppets with detailed back stories so a new Muppet movie
always interests me. I also have a television recommendation,
“Wilfred” which is on the FX channel Thursday nights. It is for
adults only but it has the combination of humor and sentiment which I
find endearing. The main character is played by a talking dog who is
actually a man in a dog costume-that should be enough inducement to
check out at least one episode. Remember, I said this was an
adults-only show, anyway at nine on a summer evening the kids should
be outside playing. (Yes, I know, only after a good spray of deet and
only to play non-competitive games that artificially bolster their

Bullet Five: It’s fair time now so please enjoy yourself and stay
safe. Also if you show animals at the fair, take care of them as if
you’re being judged on your ability to do-because indeed you are.
Finally, in the old West, men kept their revolvers on an empty
chamber for safety. I plan to do the same-no bullet six.

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