Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Truth

Confuscious say, Man who stand on toilet, is high on pot.
Ain't it the truth. Exactly what is the truth? Is it a state of mind? Is it absolute, never changing, rock like in it's existance? Or, is it ever changing, from one person to the next, like the bank of a river. As the river flows, the banks change course, winding, twisting, turning. Back and forth. Never in the same place for long. BUT, still the same river. The flow is constant, but moving directions.
That is truth, it depends on who you are. Your truth may not be the same as mine, but it's still the same truth.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Foul! You Win!

I'm not much of a basketball fan although I did play in fifth grade. And, I enjoy playing, just hanging around shooting the ball around, throw in a nice game of H.O.R.S.E. or Around the World in there and that's just fine and dandy with me. But, I never much cared to watch it. And, if I do watch a game I'd rather be in the stands than in my chair. Same with baseball, golf, racing, and pretty much every other sport that isn't football or hockey. And, I have to be in the mood to even watch them anymore. But, since my youngest daughter started playing basketball, and my oldest started Junior High Cheer, and playing softball. I've been to a lot more games than I would normally attend. And, I love to watch them and their teams play. But, that's just the Dad thing, I know it wouldn't make me any difference how the team did, if they weren't playing. And, after watching the end of the Indiana/Michigan game last night, it reminded me of a game between our Junior High boys at home a few months back. I thought it was bullshit then and I thought it was bullshit last night.

When I turned on to the game, there wasn't but a couple or three minutes left on the clock and Indiana was down by a few shots. They had plenty of time to come back, but for nearly every basket they made, Michigan came back down the court and answered it. And, it was a good game, I actually got into it, even though I'm not a fan of either team in any sport. But, I do like to watch a good game regardless of who's playing. That is I enjoyed it until they got down under the minute mark and Indiana was still down by eight points or so. And, then every damn time Michigan got the ball back after Indiana scored, Indiana would foul them to send them to the line and stop the clock. Now, I don't know when that shit became a strategy but I believe it's cheap and very unsportsman. If you have to bend the rules to win, stay the hell home. This reminded me of the Junior High Boys game earlier this year because their opponent's in that game did the exact same thing. They were down by a few goals, and did the "Foul as a play" strategy on our guys. That let Indiana win the Big Ten Championship over Michigan because they resorted to dirty plays. And, it's bullshit, no matter who's doing it. I would have though the same if it had been our boys doing the fouling, in fact I would have left the game. And, then proceeded to tell the coach how I thought it was cheap and pussified. That's basically what you're saying when you resort to tactics like that,

"I'm to big a puss to admit or accept I have been defeated."

Sunday, March 10, 2013

More Projects

I bought some more chickens last weekend, two breeding pairs of Seramas, originating out of Malaysia, and a White Cochin rooster, of Chinese origin. I really wasn't planning on buying any chickens until later this spring, but I just happened upon these on the way out of Atwoods parking lot here in town. They had the Seramas out with them, and Emily asked if they had anymore for sale beside the two pair they had there, and the lady said she only had a White Cochin at home for sale at the moment, and that's when I really got interested because she was only asking about half of what those normally go for around here. That, and momma had been wanting one since we went to Newcastle, Oklahoma to buy some barbwire from this guy. They had a Black Cochin, that basically lived inside their house, and she fell in love with their feathered legs. And, I have been on the hunt for a nice looking one ever since. Also, the lady had been showing the Cochin at livestock shows, and he was bread to be a show chicken. So, that raises his worth almost four fold.
I've been building coops for them nearly all week, there were a couple of days I didn't get to work on them all day, because of family obligations and job interviews, which I officially have a job now. But, I have two of the coops done, and another about a third done, and I will build one more like this one I'm working on, because I like this design better than the first A-frame coop I built. Same basic design and concept, just wider and lower with easier access to everything. Learn from your mistakes I say. The two A-frame coops I'm working on now will be about the same size as the yard portion of the big coop with the external hut, but with the hut built in the top like the narrow A-frame I build first. I love the A-frame design, it allows for maximum ground space for them for forage through the grass, provides adequate nesting space that is raised like the chickens need to feel safe, and yet it is still compact and easy to move around. Although I don't have wheels on any of these, I can easily pick up and move them around where ever I want, which would be made easier if I added some hardcloth to the bottoms so I wouldn't have to remove the chickens when I move the coops. But, I would just as soon go through the trouble of gathering up the chickens rather than have them walking on the hardcloth wires, this gives them a more natural grazing area.
The chickens weren't in bad health, but they did show signs of neglect and over population for the area they had been kept in. The Cochin looked the best of the three, and he looks ten times better now than he did a week ago when we got him, I suppose he got the better treatment since they had been showing him. The other four were missing a few feathers and the vanes were gone from the feather shafts on their wing tips. So, I've been giving them heavy supplements of calcium in their food. Plus giving them treats high in protein and calcium, which has helped tremendously. But, they're still recovering. If they had been in real bad shape, I wouldn't have bothered with them, but they showed good energy and nice muscle structure. And, the didn't have signs of any other aliments or disease. As with any animal, you have to know what to look for when buying them. Some things can be a simple fix, like the calcium deficiency, others can almost be a lost cause and end up costing more time and money that if you had just passed and spent more on a better looking animal. With chickens, pay special attention to their combs and wattles, feet and legs, beak, eyes and their vents/cloaca. Those are the areas where you can find signs of sickness or disease. If you have any doubts, walk away from the purchase without a second thought. It's better to spend double on a good health animal, than to spend thrice on a sick one. Personally, I'm still learning what to look for; what's good, what's bad, and what's acceptable. So, I'm not an authority in any way. But, do your research and learn everything you can about the animal you plan to buying.
Now for the pictures.

The larger A-frame with external hut for the Cochin
Cochin hut with my free range rooster Roger on top
Strut & Rosie, Seramas
Pretty Boy, White Cochin

Kenmore & Maytag, Seramas
Small A-frame with built in roost