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Tim the Dairy Farmer: Round rolled

Tim Moffett for Progressive Dairy Published on 30 June 2021

Florida is getting crowded. I’ve lived here for all of my 51 years, and these days people are moving here in herds.

People used to move to Florida for one of two reasons: retirement or running from the law. I used to think it was just the CANooks that couldn’t read a speed limit sign. And apparently, people from New York don’t use blinkers, just hand gestures.



The Skyway Bridge is not too far from me. It’s seven miles long and is very steep to allow large cruise ships to pass underneath. This bridge came up during a recent conversation I had with a new neighbor who just moved down from Ohio. Her concern was, and I quote, “How do you drive over that steep bridge with all the ice in the winter?” I laughed until she figured it out on her own.

She attended Ohio State. That’s what we’re dealing with here. On three occasions already, my neighbor has had people stop and ask why her horse was wearing a blindfold. She could have explained how the mask keeps the flies out of the horse’s eyes. But she told them her horse is so ugly she keeps the mask on so as to not scare the neighbor’s kid.

New housing developments are moving into the area as well. Before, if a cow got out, she could just graze along the roadside until we got around to it. Now, I’ve got 47 rodeo clowns trying to do something with this cow. If you ever get the chance to see a group of people who have never worked cows before try to work cows, it’s hilarious. One guy was waving his arms like he was trying to help land a cargo plane in the road. Another woman sounded like she was speaking in tongues to get the cow’s attention. The cow had enough and just jumped the fence. I watched that cow walk over to the rest of the herd with a look on her face as if to say, “Y’all ain’t gonna believe what I just saw.”

Used to be, if a stray round roll of hay went into the road ditch or rolled down a hill, you could go get it later. Not now. By not now, I mean not since “the incident.” So as to not embarrass this guy, I’ll just refer to him as “Nancy’s husband.” He’s originally from Indiana, so it might just be genetics.

Most people, when baling round rolls, pay attention to the lay of the land and notice things, like “Is the ground flat?” “Is the ground sloping?” Or “Am I at the very tippy top of a giant hill above a new housing development full of homes, people, pets, aboveground pools and, most importantly, a brand-new $50,000 F150?” Not this guy. Apparently, he missed that day in school when we all learned about the invention of the wheel. What goes up must come down. Remember the laws of gravity?


The baler kicked out a 1,000-pound roll, and the bale started rolling down to that housing development like a fat kid chasing an ice cream truck. Meanwhile, “Hoosier boy” keeps driving along jamming out to the Backstreet Boys without a care in the world. That round roll took out lamp posts, mailboxes, a swing set, two cats, outran a Prius and crashed firmly into the side of the F150. What have we all learned from Nancy’s husband? If you live in Florida, drive a Ford. It could save your entire neighborhood.  end mark

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