I was talking to Grandma as we arrived at the school. We talked as we walked towards the door, until I looked up. There, walking to the front door, was a deer. It stood looking in the window as we approached, I hung up on Grandma, then it turned and walked right up to 8.
Not quite all the way to him, being the concerned mother that I am, I stepped between my small child and the wild animal that was approaching him with no fear in broad daylight. He was shooing it the way one shoos a cow anyway, I’m sure his efforts would have succeeded without my help. The deer, looking confused, turned and walk on down the front of the school.
Later I heard the rumors that the deer had been raised by a family who live north a town a couple miles. The doe died and they took it in. I happened to run into one of the family and she confirmed it. Not only had they raised a wild animal as a pet but they had it gelded so there is not the slightest hope of it ever living an even slightly normal life. It’s sadder than it is cute and a solid lesson in why wild animals should be left wild. He doesn’t know that he should be afraid of people, even if he doesn’t get shot people can do horrible things to animals foolish enough not to fear them. He is unable to mate, unable to function as a deer. The people who love him have taught him the wrong things, not to be afraid, but have not instilled the most basic of training principles.
As horrified as I am by the whole thing I do think it would be a great exercise in clicker training.
I read this article on Slashdot and was enthralled.
An anonymous reader writes: At Recode’s annual Code Conference, Elon Musk explained how we are almost certainly living in a more advanced civilization’s video game. He said: “The strongest argument for us being in a simulation probably is the following. Forty years ago we had pong. Like, two rectangles and a dot. That was what games were. Now, 40 years later, we have photorealistic, 3D simulations with millions of people playing simultaneously, and it’s getting better every year. Soon we’ll have virtual reality, augmented reality. If you assume any rate of improvement at all, then the games will become indistinguishable from reality, even if that rate of advancement drops by a thousand from what it is now. Then you just say, okay, let’s imagine it’s 10,000 years in the future, which is nothing on the evolutionary scale. So given that we’re clearly on a trajectory to have games that are indistinguishable from reality, and those games could be played on any set-top box or on a PC or whatever, and there would probably be billions of such computers or set-top boxes, it would seem to follow that the odds that we’re in base reality is one in billions. Tell me what’s wrong with that argument. Is there a flaw in that argument?”
For anyone who doesn’t know who Elon Musk is he is brilliant. Think Tesla, space travel, PayPal. He played himself in Iron Man 2, not that that’s an argument for brilliance but it is cool. He is the real life version of Tony Stark. And he is not religious. Does not believe in God.
So without believing in God he decided that the world probably exists as a game, good verses evil, with spectators watching to see how it is played and what the outcome is. Is that not exactly what Christians believe?
Lucifer challenged God, to a game, to see who was more powerful. God being good and fair didn’t simply destroy him but instead gave him earth as his game board to show the heavenly beings that he was the good and rightful leader and satan was wrong. They are engaged in the most important game ever.
There are cattle to get sorted, calves worked and everything hauled to pasture. Us girls got together and branded out little bunch of calves. All two of us girls this time. With most of the kids along. The one that wasn’t there was the only one that would have enjoyed it.
The garden is mostly in. We’ve been enjoying lettuce from the green house for a while now. Tomatoes are all in, peppers too. Trying for a sunflower house/corn maze again this year.
With the warm weather there has been lots of time to play outside, with the cousins and with friends. We’ve been climbing trees, playing with Little Tiny Kitty and checking out strange bugs. Life is good. So busy there’s barely time to breath right now but good.
The arts are awesome! We were treated to a splendid performance tonight. First a fashion show, then a play. The play was expertly written and produced. The parts were perfectly cast with each actor well suited to their part. We laughed and cried and begged for an encore.
When we sent The Goblin Child to preschool in the darkest depths of winter it was to give her something to do. She was bored sick in the house, it was miserably cold outside and we had all had enough. Strangely I am surprised at all that she learned. I know, people send children to school to learn, but the scope of the things learned was impressive and today on her last day I thought I would reminisce.
She learned about Cat in The Hat. Our night time reading will never be the same. We used to have a greater variety of books we were aloud to read but then The Cat in the Hat came to visit. She was enthralled.
Scrub a dub came to visit. Now she washes her hands regularly and with great intensity, using proper technique and time length. We have never spent so much time in public bathrooms. But her hands are sparkly clean.
She learned about the importance of wearing sunblock. They made really cool bracelets that change color in the sun, she showed it to everybody and the cousins oohed and awed appropriately. One day while getting ready to work cattle she ran back in the house for a minute and came out covered in sun block. Her face and hands were caked and white. She told me how important it was to protect your skin, I couldn’t argue. I could spread it out a little more evenly. I feared for the state of the kitchen but needlessly, she had only gotten it where it needed to be.
She made lots of new friends. One was a particular favorite, it worried us a little. She would come home and tell us all about how she liked him so much because he took really good care of her. Then the only other girl came back and her other friend was forgotten.
She learned to sing a beautiful rendition of Jesus loves me, without all the words but with movements.
And the absolute best of all was the time that as we sat down to supper she said that we had forgotten to pay. We went back and forth for awhile trying to figure out what she was talking about, things can be a bit confusing sometimes. She meant pray. We had forgotten to say our prayers. Not only did she remind us, she said the prayer. We asked if she had learned that from eating at her good preschool friends house, she had gone over for lunch a couple of times. No she said, she had learned it at preschool. They say their prayers at snack time. We didn’t send her to a church preschool planning on this being what she learned, just didn’t think about it, not that we didn’t want it, but we are so thrilled with all the knowledge she brought home.
They enjoyed a field trip to the park today. She loved it.
I was out taking care of Poppy and MC2. The radar showed a storm coming but the clouds were so much more impressive than a red and green blob on the radar. It was a wall cloud if I’ve ever seen one. Rolling blues and greys with that green back light that always spells trouble.
I ran and opened the gates to let the horses up to the shed after I finished the cattle. They felt the change in the weather and were running and bucking around their pen, stopping occasionally in that stillness that’s almost more vibrant and charged with energy than a run, heads thrown high in the air snorting and blowing. I was able to call them to the open gate and hoped they found the shed but I wasn’t staying any longer, I ran for the house.
I came in the back door and by the time I made the front door the wind had reached hurricane force. Hail followed shortly after.
Poppy took her own sweet time calving this year. She raised two calves for the last two years and it pulled her down a little. I was worried she hadn’t bred at all, but her stomach was getting pretty big then finally she started to show. We started checking her daily waiting, watching hopefully. The weather was bad for awhile, there was snow and windy wet days. And still she waited.
Finally she decided the time was right. On a warm clear evening she had him, a pretty little dark calf. Not red but not true black, with dark points. We watched him start hunting for food, then left them in peace.
I checked them regularly, the first day they got separated it took a bit to get them back together. He always seemed scrawny and I never did see him nurse. I decided to quit worrying he had some age on him and was perky, he must be eating. Then I got a call saying he was sick, my cow hating but devoted husband helped doctor him and we brought them both in to keep a better eye on him and so he could be inside and dry.
By morning he was gone. Good bye Little Poppy.
So we began the search for a new calf for her. About that time Milk Cow would have come in handy but the father-in-law unsold her to us when he decided he wanted her back. I had intended at first to get The Goblin Child a new pet calf but she had quit crying over Milk Cow and I was pretty soured on the whole bottle calf thing. So we searched.
The feed lot in Hot Springs almost always has calves for sale but the thought of the hour and a half drive each way, with a calf in the cab with us for half of that was daunting. So we searched for something closer. I called a friend, who called a friend, I have no idea how long that went on but in no time at all she called me back saying she had found a calf. Great friends like that are so awesome.
I told The Goblin Child we were getting her, and Poppy, a new calf. She was excited and wavered between Little Poppy and Milk Cow for names. Originality is not her forte. We met the guy and followed him out to the ranch, my worried husband was not thrilled. We were not kidnapped and murdered, always a good thing. It wasn’t a totally random or complete stranger, out here nobody is.
He roped the calf out in pasture off his fourwheeler and had it tied in seconds. He loaded it into the cab of the pickup and the troubles began. 8 was not happy. Cattle are big and kind of scary when they get close and this one was way too close. I was going to switch children and car seats around but when I got them unbuckled The Goblin Child decided she didn’t want any closer to that thing either. We were twenty miles away from home with no way to get back except on the highway or I would have let him sit on my lap and to heck with rules and car seats. The look of betrayal as I made him get back in his car seat was only surpassed by his screams of terror. On our own road I freed him. He got to ride on my lap. I know I shouldn’t admit to that but I couldn’t torture my poor child any longer, it was awful.
The Goblin Child was asleep by the time we got home. I pulled up close to the shed door and let 8 out then went around and hauled the big calf out of the cab. He not a baby calf, he’s as big as I am. When 8 saw me wrestling with the calf he came unglued, screaming again and ran towards us. Not a smart child. I had the calf mostly untied and it chose that time to try to stand. I had to hold onto the calf while trying to keep the child away. It was a little difficult but no one got killed and the calf ended up in the shed.
I can’t say that Poppy accepted him with open arms, or what ever, but we are working on it and he is getting his food. Hopefully she will come to love him like her own and it will be a done deal.
That pretty much covers it. 8 in his current quest to kill himself fell down the back stairs as well as off the play ground equipment and breaking all the glass over his head. He gets ibuprofen regularly for soreness as well as all the teething he’s doing. Not a happy boy.
They are planting corn using the GPS, and alfalfa and millet. Not that they need it but hey, apparently it sounded fun. The corn is being planted with it because when the guys come to spray for, what weeds?, they wont even try to drive down the rows, they drive at an angle across them. Unless they have the GPS, again what? settings? location? whats the right word? Last year it made him even madder than usual and thus the base station. My brilliant husbands base station is working beautifully, there is a couple of centimeters error most of the time. Now, I think, he needs someone else willing to try it.