Monday, June 06, 2011

Rock Stars and Professional Bass Fishing ...

There was a time when I saved up all my extra money and bought rock star gear. I had electric guitars (still have one for sale if anyone is interested), I had multiple bass guitars, I had amps, I had heavy speaker cabinets, and I even was putting together a modest set of recording gear so that I could record the next great song. I played shows for 10's of people and for 1,000's of people (at least once or twice) and I thought about taking the whole music thing to the next level ... at least I wanted to ...

But, I just don't think I was cool enough for the rock star gig. So I thought to myself ... surely I'm cool enough for the professional bass fishing gig! I started trading out some of those bass guitars and amps for fishing poles, lures, reels, more lures, more poles, and more and more and more lures. I began reading Bassmaster Magazine and clipping out the articles ... I knew what all the hot lures were just as the were becoming popular ... I wanted to be a professional bass fisherman! I wanted to fish and talk fishing and sell fishing and be outdoors ... at least that was the plan ...

Then came the farm ... my guitars are out of tune and tucked away in a closet ... the only two amps I had left are at my mom's for storage ... my stash of lures and rods and reels sit about ten feet away from me collecting dust and catching spider webs ... none of those things are relevant for what I'm doing right now and what I want to be able to do. But, there are times that I wonder ...

Sometimes I wonder if I shouldn't just give up on the farming dream. I know the statistics for new business start-ups are very dismal (and that is what this farm is), so sometimes I wonder if I'm just one of those many businesses that are just prone to fail for whatever reason. Sometimes I wonder what it would be like to come back after work and sit down for a leisurely meal or a quick bit of yard work. Sometimes I wonder if I shouldn't just sell it all ... get a small house in a small town near a lake and just work for the weekends ...

Please don't think I'm complaining ... I'm just wondering ... But, the reality is that I want to farm. I want to make the farm go and be as profitable and sustainable as possible and I want to throw myself behind it one hundred percent. Maybe someday I'll look back at the farm as one of those phases or dreams that just never materialized (like music or fishing), but right now I feel that if I look back at the farm and see it had failed it won't be because of lack of effort.

:: A Positive Note :: As I read over what I just wrote I realized it was kind of a downer ... so let me just end with this thought ... if I'm going to be a farmer I'd like to bring a little rock star influence into the world of farming!!

9 comments:

Yeoman said...

Well, only you know for sure. But I'd note that I've wanted to be a rancher as long as I can remember, but other career goals came and went in the mean time too.

The career I know occupy is one of those where I guess I'm living for Sunday (there are no "weekends" in the law), but the desire to be a rancher is stronger than ever. If anything, even though I wonder if I should give up, and strongly suspect that I'll die never having gotten to be what I wanted to do, I feel that I am compelled by nature to keep trying.

If that is farming to you, and it may or may not be, that weekday desk job may make your desire to farm more, not less, intense.

Would that we still lived in a United States where those who wanted to be farmers could be without all the struggle just to get there.

Maya said...

Nobody says it will be easy. Patience and persistence! I too am a beginning farmer and as long as you enjoy what you are doing, it's worth it right?

marriedtothefarm said...

Of course you know this, but I think every farmer has times where they think about living in town. I had a lot of those thoughts, usually at the end of the year when we were sitting in the accountant office being told how far in the negative we were for the year. Things turn around, though, they just take their sweet time.

Rich said...

I could almost write a book about some of the general frustrations, crop failures, droughts, fires, horrible calving seasons, etc. I have had while farming.

But I am my own boss and have an optimism about the future that I never had before I started farming.

There is something to be said about being able to put a seed in the ground and multiply it twenty, fifty, or a hundred fold. Or, doubling the size of a herd of cattle every year.

How many jobs allow you to be relatively free, and that productive?

colliefarm said...

I think going through the change is part of what's exhausting about it-it seems like once you've had ten years behind you of doing something, you're comfortable with it, you've learned how to do it well, and it's part of your identity. But it's the metamorphosis that is challenging, adopting a new lifestyle, going through the frustrations of the learning curve, accepting that some of it's different than you expected, and the questioning... At times I find myself feeling uncomfortable, and then I realize that's why- I'm changing, and I'm out of my comfort zone!
Michelle

sewa mobil said...

Nice article, thanks for the information.

Tarheelbilly said...

I've been following your blog for quite some time, and after reading your post today, I had to leave a comment. I know what you mean about feeling discouraged. I am trying to make my microfarm dream happen while staying at home with an infant and holding things down here stateside while my husband is deployed. There are times when I think that I should just go back to work... I mean, sitting at a farmer's market peddling honey for a few bucks a pint when I could make 50K a year seems like a waste of college, doesn't it? But NO, it's not, because I LOVE IT. I love talking to people about bees and my honey. I love talking about goat milk, Limosuin beef, and the benefits of home raised chickens. And no matter how tired of hunting for eggs I get, or frustrated when people think that my products should be cheap because it's x dollars at Walmart, I get to live in a place where I hear roosters crow at dawn. I get to see food grow when I look out of my window.
And I get to pass those things on to my daughter. I get to tell her that money isn't everything, that values and community are important. So, I want you to keep staring at those rods gathering dust in the corner-- one day, they'll get wet again. But in the meantime, you have cows to feed. And that's a good thing. :-) Take care.

Anonymous said...

There is only one thing that you can't get more of: TIME.

If we had an infinite amount of time -we were immortal- there wouldn't be any discouragement, there would always be enough time to take care of anything.

It all boils down to one of those ugly corporate-world terms: time management. As much as I eschew the corporate world, it has produced some things of value: taught me that it's somewhere I DON'T want to be :-)

And really, life IS all about time management. It's about finding our priorities. For me it was pretty easy after repeatedly falling back across the fundamentals of Food, Shelter and Water. Not a carpenter, and knowing very little about water to be able to contribute to humanity here (how many water experts are needed anyway?), I figured that this left me with Food, farming.

The words "farming" and "sustainability" are a pretty common pairing these days. I don't think that anything is really sustainable (permanent), otherwise we'd be immortal (and time management wouldn't be an issue). Why bother with farming? Well, why bother with ANYTHING? This one's simple- life is worth living, and living life is what life's about.

Can there be any better way to spend one's precious time in life than to experience actual life (not the fake stuff that the corporate world has overwhelmed us with)?

And, while we can't readily turn into hunter-gatherer societies, farming is as close to sustainability as we can get- we live on the margins, the margins is where life happens.

Your four children should be all the reminders you need for why you spend your time farming. You are sustaining their future.

Scott Nearing put it best when he said: "Work as well as you can and be kind."

Thank you for sharing your time with others (this blog). Those closest to you are very lucky.

Scatteredeggs

Jake Book said...

Maybe you can be a Farming Rockstar. Grass-fed, music loving beef....

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...