654 Miles

My Generation

My past 36 hours has seen the following: 654 miles, a dozen ag editors, 378 oz. Diet Pepsi, 23 planters, 3 sprayers, 2 states. Give or take.

Published on: April 13, 2011
You may have noticed I haven't had a new blog post in about five days. Or maybe not. If you have and if the wondering has kept you up at night, it's because it's been a little crazy around here. The past five days have seen all of the following, though not in any particular order: the start of Spring Planting 2011, the celebration of our third child's third birthday, a four-day fever, and a two-day road trip covering 654 miles in approximately 36 hours. Not that I was counting.

Said road trip involved me attending the AAEA board meeting in KC, held in conjunction with NAMA. 500 points if you know any two of those three acronyms. Also, points mean nothing.

Lest you be held in suspense, AAEA stands for the American Ag Editors Association, KC is Kansas City and NAMA is the National Agri-Marketing Association. Basically, a whole bunch of fun people who work in ag publishing, ag media, ag public relations, ag advertising, etc., etc., converged on Kansas City, and boy, is it fun. Actually, many of them are still there. I beat a path home after my meeting yesterday because of planting/fever/birthday. And also, my work there was done.

What I did see in my 654 miles:
*           Green stuff. And purple stuff. Just going as far south as Quincy revealed greener grass, blooming trees, and winter annuals both purple and green. Also, did you know you can eat henbit? Pre-spraying, obviously. My colleague (and AAEA president) Steve Fairchild says his daughter says so. She looked it up online. We feel like that is rock-solid proof.
*           Planting! Planters and sprayers and cultivators, oh my. Spring Planting 2011 is kicking into gear. And let's be real about what's happening here: the fact that tractors will criss-cross millions of acres in the next few weeks (I'd say couple weeks, but I don't want to jinx us) and plant an entire crop of corn, which will drive trading, speculation and markets for the next many months and will supply food chains around the world? That is an unmatched feat of efficiency, technology and hard work.
*           Two loads of shiny new Hagie sprayers. It was somewhere in north-central Missouri. That's all.
*           A double-tank anhydrous trailer with a missing tire. Somewhere along Rte 36, an unmarked police car passed me and my minor heart failure, with small lights flashing in the back. A few miles down the road, he was pulled over behind a pickup and a double-tank anhydrous trailer, with its back left hub sitting on the pavement. No leaks or visible damage, but that can't make for a good day.
*           Far too much Diet Pepsi for any one human. I won't sleep for days. Have you seen this? Check out the owls at about the four-minute mark; that's me. "I can hear my heart beating in my ears!"