Loading bulls the cowgirl way
Most inventions or new ideas result from a problem for which there is no commonly prescribed answer. Women often have more need to find an alternative solution because, unlike their macho counterparts, “brute force” is not usually a choice. Which brings me to Kristy and her pet cow Jers.
Jers, pronounced Jerz, belonged to Kristy and her husband who lived on an Oklahoma quarter section. Kristy kept horses and did some training to supplement her income as a schoolteacher. Jers was a practical hobby and had recently calved.
It was one of those nasty, soggy, shivering, chilly-to-the-bone early spring mornings where the sky looked like a glass ceiling painted battleship gray. The rain had turned the corrals and fields into soup. A perfect time for Jers to come back in heat! On prior occasions Kristy had borrowed one of neighbor Tom’s bulls, but her husband said it would be useless to ask until the ground dried out.
Not discouraged in the least, Kristy drove down to the local cafe the next morning where Coffee Shop Communion was held daily. There, drinking coffee and playing cards, was neighbor Tom dispensing wisdom. Kristy asked. Tom said he had six bulls turned out on wheat pasture nearby but there was no way to gather them because it was too muddy.
“If I can get one caught, can I borrow him?” she asked.
He gave her the slanted eye, “You can’t ride a horse or a vehicle into the pasture either,” he warned. She left. The room full of cowmen had a good laugh.
Less than an hour later she pulled up in front of the cafe with a big Charlois bull in the back of her trailer!
Using her superior feminine illogic, she had loaded Jers and her calf into the 16-foot stock trailer, driven into the wheat field, careful to stay on the good shale oil well road, and parked. After shutting the calf into the front section of the trailer, she lead the haltered, hot and happy Jers up and down the road. A quarter mile away six bulls were watching this parade. Then… en masse, they started slogging through the mud in her direction! Something in the air, I guess; a siren’s song, the hint of romance, that nose curling, blinding, no-holds-barred bellowing call of the wild!
As the charging front line of testosterone carriers neared the trailer, Kristy quickly reloaded Jers in the front with her calf, closed the sorting gate, and escaped through the front door! The first bull never hesitated. He jumped right in, Kristy slammed the gate, and off they drove back to the cafe.
Recess was called and the entire coffee shop communion went out in the parking lot to see. Tom inspected the tires for mud, stomping around the trailer, arms crossed and looking suspiciously. “How did…?” he began.
“I’m sending the story to Baxter,” she said. “I’ll bet you’ll be able to read it in his column pretty soon. Thanks again.”
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Outtagrass Cattle Co. cartoon by Jan Swan Wood for the June 19, 2021, edition of Tri-State Livestock News