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The Manure Spreader: Being diversified

Tim Moffett Published on 22 August 2014

I was talking to my accountant the other day, and she said the cookie jar was almost empty. “Crumbs” in the bottom of the jar was what she should have said.Now, I never really had a plan for my “future earnings,” as they say. When asked by my accountant what I would do with my future earnings, I replied I would pay my future bills.

Let’s be practical, people: The feed truck will be here again tomorrow.

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Then my accountant asked me what I was hoping for financially down the road. I replied I was hoping for a comma in my next milk check. She asked me about retirement. I didn’t know that was an option.

Really, all I had planned was pulling my tractor over to a shady tree right before the end. I think it would be kinda nice to be buried in a papier-mâch é coffin made of my past-due bills. You can’t take it with you, but they can’t track you down either.

I have so many liens on my farm the cows walk crooked. I have tried to supplement my milk check by being more diversified. I had a yard sale, and I learned a few things. If selling to your neighbors, don’t sell any personal items.

I tried to sell some slightly used underwear but … people judge. It is also very helpful if you can remember what gifts people gave you in the past. My aunt was surprised to see a sweater she knitted for me being worn by my neighbor’s dog.

Also – now this is important – when selling to city folk, nothing is old, everything is antique. Take for instance the old bed pan my grandpa used ’cause he didn’t want to make the long trek all the way to the outhouse. I later used this as a sled; it’s now a “one-of-a-kind” hand-forged grow pot for shallow-growth orchids.

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It is amazing what people will buy at a yard sale. I sold some old board games. I sold a Monopoly game that only had a thimble, a racecar, $700 and an I.O.U. from my brother. As a kid, I remember mailing all the “get out of jail” cards to my uncle thinking it would help.

I even sold a Scrabble game that did not have any E’s. It was OK; the fella I sold it to was Russian. At least I think he was Russian, I couldn’t understand him.

The accountant said I should look into some offshore accounts. I don’t even own a boat, although I have been in a canoe – up a creek without a … never mind, you get the idea. She also said my credit score was so low I might not get financing for a new tractor.

I told her not to worry. The reason I’m not getting a new tractor is not low credit but high prices. “Low credit, high prices” – if you hum that phrase to yourself and rub your ears, it’s like one of those meditation chants.

She asked me when was the last time I took a loan out. I told her the week before last Saturday. She asked me what the loan was for, and I told her it was for a 1989 Chevy Silverado with four bald tires and leaked oil.

She was shocked and yelled at me, “Why would you get that type of vehicle with a loan?” I told her it was all my cousin could lend me. Relax, I gotta return it on Tuesday after the demolition derby. Accountants just don’t get it. PD

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Tim is a Florida dairy farmer and stand-up comedian. For more, visit his website .

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