• T.J. Burnham

    Getting It Right and Getting It Wrong

    Western Ag Vignettes

     by T.J. Burnham
     on June 26, 2014

    We editors are a sensitive lot. We love getting letters that tell us we are angelic in our perfect accuracy.  But when someone tells us we blew it, it simply rips out our hearts. Case in point: In the July Western Farmer-Stockman I wrote a wonderful (my kudos) story on GMOs. Then, we ran a great big beautiful photo of a wheat field to go with it. No wheat GMOs exist,  the letter to the editor told me. I knew that. I could reach into my excuse trough and come up with 17 different…

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  • T.J. Burnham

    It's the Bubble Gum I Hear

    Western Ag Vignettes

     by T.J. Burnham
     on June 20, 2014

    No, I'm not leaving my Pacific Northwest nest. But my daughter is, after living with us for a couple of years between locations. Since she has two little ones, their stuff has accumulated to our rooftops, and into the attic. I think they had some of it on the roof. So, as a prelude to her move to St. Louie, she  contracted for one of those pods to be dumped in my driveway. A 16-foot-long white box has elbowed into the place I once parked my Suzuki. Packing it was no piece of cake…

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  • T.J. Burnham

    For the Love of …So Many Things

    Western Ag Vignettes

     by T.J. Burnham
     on June 12, 2014

    The Bible says the greatest gift is love. The Beetles say All We Need is Love. Little valentines say "I love you." The Mills Brothers sang that "We Always Hurt the One We Love." And Tina Turner asks "What's Love Got to Do with It?" Kind of a mixed review on the emotion in our society, but my personal take is the biblical one as it being the greatest and best thing going. Love is a word loosely tossed about. Do we really "love" to sail? Is a dog…

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  • T.J. Burnham

    A View Beyond the Window

    Western Ag Vignettes

     by T.J. Burnham
     on June 10, 2014

    We live in a little place. All we experience when running to the grocery store or lounging on the beachfront is such a small perspective. The eye can only see so far, so deep, and there beyond our limits of sight are billions of other eyes looking a quite different worlds. Earth is big. So big we don’t even share the same sunrise. We have time zones to tell us when the Japanese are waking up or when the people in Greenland are having lunch. Lots of us speak languages most of us…

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  • T.J. Burnham

    A Bird for Joseph

    Western Ag Vignettes

     by T.J. Burnham
     on June 4, 2014

    There is a luxury three-story birdhouse atop a pole out my window where the garden sits. Sometimes, when the sparrows are in the right mood, a couple moves in and settles on some eggs for  summer hatching. It is an exciting natural epic to enjoy. This year, however, visiting birds just flew away, perhaps the neighborhood was not up to par (I must weed the garden soon). As a result, my six-year-old grandson, Joseph, isn't  happy. "Why won't we have any little bird…

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  • T.J. Burnham

    Here Come The Ice Coolers

    Western Ag Vignettes

     by T.J. Burnham
     on June 2, 2014

    The snowbells, daffodils, tulips, camellias, azaleas and the rhododendrons mostly, have faded, and I hear the jingle of ice in my new Coleman metal cooler hailing that summer is in the wet wings of dying spring. I like the long days that mean I can do lots of outside things and not worry about it getting dark before I finish. Since the Pacific Northwest summer sunset comes late, it stays light until after 9:30 some evenings, and that's good enough to get in one more cast into the lake or…

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