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Man Blog: A Realistic, If Snarky, Take On Fall Traditions (Title By Tina)

We are again on the right side of the dirt for another first-of-the-month Man Blog. The fall traditions are continuing here at the farm. The big yellow bus has been making its rounds for over a month. Every morning, we must come to terms with the fact that we have two feet that require both socks and shoes. We do indeed need to have our bookbags packed and ready at the same time every day. Just because you don’t feel like going to school doesn’t change the fact that going to school, you shall. Telling a 5’ 8”, 230 lb. middle-aged bald man that life is unfair will get you no sympathy.

The Hallmark movie fest has started every single night at our place. If you hate a mystery, Hallmark is for you. In a nutshell, every single movie has a lovely girl in the city who has a slimy boyfriend. After seeing him for what he is, she returns to the country for a break. Out of nowhere, there is a local man who is also single. After a slight mix-up and some good-time shenanigans, they fall in love. One more mix-up and misunderstanding before they both make a tacky speech about life and boom, the deal is sealed. Lather, rinse and repeat until Christmas. Anyone one of the following changes can be made to make the movie so very special. Pumpkin or Christmas tree farm. Hayride or sleigh ride. He fixes her car or has his car break down. He or she is moving out as planned earlier but has a change of heart. Anyone who has seen one movie knows every movie. Regardless, here in Smayville, the nonmystery is a hit for two-thirds of the population.

Pumpkin-flavored Keurig coffee has shown up. I believe there has been some outstanding marketing on the part of the pumpkin industry. Not long ago, the only two uses for a pumpkin were pies and carving. The genius decided to take something as reliable and sought after as coffee, and to add a gourd is brilliant. Absolutely gross, in my opinion, but indeed brilliant. Want something you love every morning that gets you started for the day? Here it is with an orange gourd flavor ground in. Enjoy the season.

Until fall, we can occasionally enjoy a late evening on our porch. The cooler temperatures and the sounds are an excellent way for us to unwind for the evening until this time of year.

A fun fact about goats is that the females become very vocal during breeding season. Breeding season starts when the days are getting short. We would need earplugs to enjoy sitting outside this time of year. The lustful bellering from our girls seems to never stop. We are usually spotted if we try to enjoy the porch, and the sound increases until we give up and go inside to watch yet another predictable Hallmark movie.

The same savages here on the farm that enjoy Hallmark movies also look forward to wearing sweaters. Every nice warm day we have left for the year is always disappointing that a sweater can not be worn. It is not the sweater that gets me. It is knowing in a few short months, it will be cold. Cold to the point the leader of the savages will be looking to move to someplace tropical and murdery to escape the cold. Sweater-wearing means colder weather is coming.

Soup season is coming as well. Cooler temperatures around here also mean that the lumpy beverage passed off as a meal will happen more frequently. An occasional bowl of soup is more than enough. However, with Hallmark movies to watch, sweaters to wear, pumpkin everything, and the yelling of goats, it is only fitting that food that needs to be chewed disappears for a while. It seems like during the summer months, when we are busy with markets, farm work, and everything else, a speedy drinkable meal that could be chugged from a thermos would be perfect. Cheeseburger soup is always a hit. It puts me in mind of one of my two favorite things in the world: a cheeseburger. I have said a million times if I had to pick a last meal, it would be a cheeseburger. However, the soup reminds me of something I love that has been transformed into something almost unrecognizable. Cheeseburger soup is like watching your child join an outlaw motorcycle gang.

October also starts the build-up of winter fat. We get a hay wagon of local children Trick or Treating at the farm. There is no neighborhood, only three houses are within walking distance, and only one home has candy-gathering aged children, so we know what to expect from trick-or-treaters. However, bags of candy are gathered every year, just in case. We slowly pick off the candy so it doesn’t go to waste and then restock it before Halloween and again pick it off. Sometimes, it is again picked up and brought home after Halloween because it is on clearance. Then, all of the pants seem to shrink in the dryer. Some self-reflection on what we eat would make sense—with Thanksgiving not too far off, worrying about the extra pounds after Christmas seems right. After all, we have Halloween candy to help us make it to Thanksgiving, Thanksgiving to hold us over until Christmas, and months of Christmas cookies to eat up to make room in the freezer. After the first of the year, the diet and healthy lifestyle will kick in. The preparation for winter survival starts this month to ensure we won’t freeze over the winter.

Until next month, don’t spoil the ending of the cheesy movies, be thankful for drinkable meals, put on the itchy, uncomfortable sweater, and keep washing your hands.

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