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This reporter business is pretty tough. Imagine getting an assignment to cover the first running of the Redneck Yacht Club races. Yea, you get the picture.
There are some people in life that when you get their call, it is in your best interest to get on the horse and gallop, not walk, not trot, but gallop to the scene. For a Warroad Pioneer reporter, one of those people is PeggyAnn Anderholm from the Yellow Rose. When she e-mailed that I'd best come to cover the big Redneck Yacht Club Race that she had conspired with Jeremy Culleton to put on, I put it on my mental calendar. I did take the precaution to ask her to e-mail a couple of days before the event to reinforce the notion to go. She did and I aimed the little Ranger SuperCab towards Warroad on the day of the event. School security allowed me in and it was a blast, well, big splashes and lots of sinking, wet cardboard, laughing kids and red-faced engineers.
rules were simple: build a boat with cardboard, duct tape and garbage bags and
navigate the length of the pool. I'm wondering if Bill Marvin had that in mind
when he donated the pool. Probably, knowing his penchant for doing the
unimaginable. Anyway, the crafts carried into the pool area were of every
imaginable shape. A group of engineers from Yellow Rose Research & Development
had a nicely built craft there. Lots of guys and one gal from the school had
built their own versions. They all tried to make the length of the pool and
only one student made it.
Trapper hauled me down to Willie Krzoska's with the Missus' camera later in the week to see Willie's tame partridge. When we got there, Willie was sitting in his garage and the partridge was walking around his feet. He coaxed it into his lap, but it wouldn't go up on his shoulder like it usually did. A pretty bird, it was around for a while, then disappeared into the nearby thicket. Willie then started up his 4-wheeler and drove over by the brush and the bird reappeared, jumped up on the machine and, before long, up on Willie's shoulder. Predictably, when I went to click the picture, I got the "memory full" message and had to delete a picture and re-shoot before the bird changed its mind.
The little girls are out of school so I have company during the day. I have to thank my friend Clayton the Percheron Man for finding me a saddle. I mentioned that we needed one and he said he had just what I needed. He'd gone to an auction, seen a harness that he wanted so he bid on it and got it. He'd asked an Amish boy there to load his stuff for him, when he got home and opened the door of the tack room on the trailer, not only did he have the harness, he had an old saddle and bridle along with it. I could have it if I wanted it. I wanted it so Trapper and I made the voyage down to the Skoien ranch. Clayton settled up with Trapper over their mutual logging activities and we picked up the saddle. Friday was spent getting each of the girls up on Amber the horse and around the yard a couple of times.
weekend was spent going south to lower northern
I know many of you are anxiously awaiting an update on how the Buick is working out for Management and me. Actually, it's been working out pretty well, but not without a problem or two.
I'd noticed early on that the vacuum hose coming out of the fuel pressure regulator on the venerable 3.8 V-6 was deteriorating so I replaced the hose. I did check on the price of a regulator at the parts store but it was nearly half of what I'd paid for the car. I figured that I'd use the Buick for awhile, maybe it would heal itself. When I asked, Dick Wahlstrom informed me that the 5-50 warranty (5 seconds or 50 feet, whichever comes first) had expired before I'd left his driveway the day I'd bought it. The Buick worked OK for a little while, however it developed the annoying habit of stalling as Management drove it around town. I figured I'd better bite the bullet and get the part, which I did. I figure the value of the car has increased by 50% since the part cost $143 at CarQuest and the car set me back $300, throw in a little labor for the 5 minute task of installing it and the car is now easily worth $450. It runs much better; gas mileage is about 27mpg so I think I'll keep it awhile longer. Still haven't found any of that dark tint window stuff...
I'm thinking that many of the readers of the Southwest Angle are master gardeners, however I haven't reached that level of green thumbery at this point in my life. I do like to put in a garden if possible every year. Last year it wasn't possible, but here at Roseen's Corner there's a little garden plot in the yard. One day Trapper asked me if I'd like to have it plowed up. Of course I said yes so one morning he came by with the 4020 and a chisel plow. I figured he probably should have used the 7020 for the 20' by 50' plot, but the 4020 was what he brought. I think it took all of 4.5 minutes to get it done and most of that was turning it around. Trapper also brought over some well-rotted cow byproduct (more commonly called manure) a little later and spread it over the plot.
I still needed to smooth it out so when Trapper and I pulled a flexible drag section, broken but wired together in true Trapper fashion, out of the weeds one day, I figured that would work well for dragging the garden. I hauled it over by the garage, carefully unwired the masterpiece of a repair and welded it up to look like nearly new. The next day I pulled it across the plot with the skid steer. The weather and my spare time didn't coincide very well so the project stalled for a few days.
Most of the seeds were gone from the racks in the stores but I was able to get some turnip seeds one day. Management and the little girls found some Japanese hull-less popcorn and some decorative maize so we were a little closer to our dream garden. Trapper's Missus and another of Management's co-workers cleaned out their seed boxes so when we got ready to plant we had some year-old corn seed, 30 year-old rutabaga seed, divers other out-of-date garden seeds and some fresh bezel. Now that's my type of gardening.
My row marker hadn't made the trip north so I started to make a new one Saturday morning. I sneaked over to Trapper's shed to measure the tiller. He had it partially hidden under a pile of tires for some reason, probably so the renter wouldn't notice it and want to borrow it. I'd noticed the handle sticking out on an earlier expedition. I uncovered it, measured the width and estimated I'd have to have 30 inch rows if I wanted to borrow his tiller. Went back to my garage, gathered the materials and put together a nice row marker. About that time, David and Eleanor Johnson stopped by so we all went inside for some coffee and good conversation. Trapper stopped over a little later and joined in.
After the Johnsons left, I resumed work on the garden project. The patch was still a little rough so I decided to drag it a little more. Trapper had earlier told me I could use his ancient 4-wheeler so I figured I'd use that to pull the drag since the skid steer really wasn't made for that type of work. It wouldn't start so we pulled it over by my garage. After two carb rebuilds and 3 lost parts, I got it running, hooked it up to the drag and smoothed the dirt to my liking. About that time, I had to go to the Blue Star for a Saturday shift.
I got done early and home before 9 PM so went out and marked all the rows with my new row marker. Management started soaking some corn seed. No hoe around so I borrowed Trapper's and dug out some rows. The little girls helped plant some of the soaked corn and I planted a row of turnips before darkness ended the fun.
It was gorgeous the next morning so we were all out in the garden at about 7 AM and finished planting. We ended up with about 7 rows of divers varieties of corn, a row of peas, 3 rows of beans, a row of rutabagas, a row of turnips, 3 tomato plants, 2 rows of sunflowers mixed with pole beans, a row of lettuce, a hill each of squash, cantaloupe and cucumber, and a part row of bezel on the end. A real masterpiece.
that early Sunday morning activity, it was over to visit the folks at the
Another week in the Great North, see you next week!6/18/08
As usual, it's been an interesting week, work and area culture in spades. I've been working on getting my skid steer to a state where it can be used in the swampy conditions we find ourselves in. June is like we used to have it: cold and wet.
Arne and Luella Erickson
are entertaining their cousins from
Since we have a horse now, there are certain things that need to be done. Here at Roseen's Corner, the barnyards still have a large amount of manure and hay needing removal. I took Skiddy, my John Deere 250 skid steer, back to the pen Amber the horse resides in to do some cleanup. It became rapidly apparent that I'd better get the tracks on it if I was going to complete the task sometime before snowfall. Skiddy works well on dry or frozen ground without the tracks but with rainfall every 20 minutes or so, it doesn't work, it spins.
Skiddy's tracks needed some
new bolts and steel bushings so time between writing and welding at the Blue
Star was spent cutting bushings out of 1 1/4" rolled steel and cutting off
the old bolts and inserting new bushings and bolts. Trapper was off on his Trout
Research /Food Procurement Project near
Middle daughter Katelyn and I then headed over to Greenbush for another high class event: Racing Greenbush style. We happened to get there on Sprint Car night so it was a little pricey but Promoter Eugene had nearly full stands for the event anyway. The track crew had managed to get the track into a semblance of racing shape after the monsoons. The track was tacky, the more powerful of the Sprints could wheelie down the front stretch if they chose to, several of them did.
While the sprints were colorful and loud, the best race of the night was the Street Stock feature race. Two cars from the Pure Stock class joined the 4 Street Stock cars in attendance to raise the numbers racing. They had to start at the back and about three laps into the race, one of the lower-class cars knifed through the pack and took the lead. He was challenged by one of the other cars for some time but held the lead and won the race.
The track crew spent much
time on the track between races to keep the track smooth but it was tough. No
dry slick that night. One of the Sprint cars flipped up on its side during hot
laps and couldn't make the feature. The Sprint heat races were more or less
parades, it was obvious that the drivers were not comfortable with the wet
After lunch, we split up. I attended the matinee of "No Sex Please, We're British", alone, since it was likely not appropriate for the little girls. It wasn't. It was still a credible production by local talent. I'd recommend the comedy for more mature audiences.
Management took the little
girls over to the packed
The band was gracious
enough to let the little girls debut their rendition of "Catch a Falling
Star" in preparation for their appearance in the Grand Rapids Showboat later
in the summer. Then it was off to
Another week in the great north. See you next week!6/25/08
We’ve finally been blessed with a streak of more seasonal weather. Well, maybe I should re-phrase that since I’ve experienced many rainy Junes in 50 some years. We’ve had nearly a week of mainly sunshine which has prompted me to start wearing short-sleeved shirts and even tee-shirts. They have to be pocket tee-shirts so I can keep my Dollar Saver reading glasses handy.
Speaking of the Dollar Saver store, have you been in there lately? As you all know, Management is pretty tight with what she allows me to spend money so it is nice to go to a store where I can get a lot of stuff for those few dollars. They have some really good cookies there and also some great wheat crackers. The wheat crackers have a half life of about 3 minutes once we open them up around here. Oops, shouldn’t have mentioned the good deals, they’ll all probably disappear before I get back there…
Where was I? Oh, nice weather. Great weather for the car
show in Warroad on Saturday. Everybody there seemed to be having a great time.
Drove in about noon and found some shade to park in since I had Abby the dog
along. I was only able to spend a couple of hours at the show before heading to
There was a great selection of cars. As could be expected, Mayor Bob was there with a car or three. Loralee and Uff-Da were Relaying for Life next to the Food Booth. The Hard Driving Editor here at the Pioneer Office, Mark Marvin, says Uff-Da has to be near food… or maybe it was LoraLee, I don’t quite remember… Anyhow, I really like it when I go to an event and the food is actually reasonably priced. They were serving up plates of sauerkraut covered brats, beans and chips for $3, a big cup of pop for $.50. Kudos to Dan Ostlund and the rest of the Cruisers.
The show was just the thing for this Gearhead. They called it the Motorhead Classic, close enough. I circled the grounds several times trying to pick a favorite. There was this A-bodied Buick from the ‘80’s, a 455 gracing the engine bay, that caught my eye. The alternator on the monster motor was so high it looked like they’d have to put a bulge in the hood for it. Other than that and the fact that it is a Buick, it ranks right up there. There was a flat fendered Jeep that’s definitely in contention. Another possible contender is the Ford powered Porsche. Not sure whether to call it a PorFord or a Forsche.
I wondered about asking the Mayor if I could take a spin in the Boss 429, but thought the better of it. I figured that Matt Anderson’s Land Cruiser should be pretty good for winter driving, another contender. Scott Ostroski’s ’40 Ford pickup looked pretty hi-tech to me so I gave that one some consideration.
After parsing through all the vehicles I saw, I’ll name the
brown bare bones Belvedere the Southwest Angle Car of the Show. It reminds me
of the Plymouths that Dad used to drive when I was a kid. He’d usually have a
While I was eating my reasonably priced meal at the car
show, there were no empty tables so I sat at one already occupied by a fellow
wearing a BMW vest. I struck up a conversation by asking about his Bimmer. He
said he’d had a BMW motorcycle, but the vest was better than the bike. He said
his name was Josef and he was just riding through Warroad on his motorcycle, a
650 Suzuki V-Strom, and stopped at the car show. He’s from
I had to leave the show and drive the SuperCab and trailer
down to lower northern
Sarah has to be commended for her resourcefulness and diligent work on this project. It is always good to see someone take a great idea to completion, involving much of the rest of the community to benefit the seniors. She is the first entry for the 2008 Citizen of the Year for this column, COTY for short. As with the other award, there will be no trophy or prize, but maybe a certificate?
Made it to all the Grad parties, then loaded the old John Deere A on the trailer and brought it back here to Roseen’s Corner. I unloaded it on Monday and was tempted to unhook LaRae’s discbine from her Case-IH Maxxum 140 and hook it up to my old two banger. After thinking it over, I figured the discbine wouldn’t be able to take the torque; or at least that’s what I told myself, so I just parked the A by the shed…
See you next week!