Marsha and humble

Painting by Sandra Mason Dickson




Robert Karl Skoglund
785 River Road
St. George, ME 04860

or


Perhaps it would be more fun for both of us if you'd make your contribution by spending a night here in The humble Farmer Bed & Breakfast.

It will be a vacation you'll never forget when your significant other is expecting a week on Bermuda

and you end up at The humble Farmer's Bed & Breakfast in a pouring rain.

Check out our B&B web page.

You can live Maine Reality TV --- Visit The humble Farmer Bed and Breakfast.

Thanks to our computer guru friend Zack, you can also hear these radio shows on iTunes.

The humble Farmer's TV show can be seen on YouTube. See humble working around his farm.

Maine Reality TV --- The humble Farmer's TV show on YouTube.

+

It's that time of year again. On January 18, 2016, my 80th birthday, I paid ASCAP $246 for the right to run this radio show for you on the Internet. Although we are not starving, any help you might send along would be appreciated. humble

+


Below is a rough draft of humble's rants for your Maine Private Radio show for May 15, 2016

+

Yesterday I finished plastering the north wall under the window for my wife Marsha, The Almost Perfect Woman. The window had leaked and rotted out the window sill in this 205-year-old-house and I had to replace it. The window sill, not the house. If you donít know what you are doing, plastering is a messy business and I'm glad it is over. You heard me whine about the red spot that appeared on the back of my hand the other day. It is the kind of spot that you see on the hands and arms of your friends in nursing homes just before they die. What am I to think when I see this spot on the back of my hand? Well, that's not the worst part. Last night, on the inside of my wrist, only an inch from my hand, was a gray spot. It was a dangerous looking discoloration on my skin. It looked even more menacing than the purple spot on the back of my hand that had appeared the week before. I figured it had oozed out from a vein or artery or whatever it was I could see throbbing beneath it. It is discouraging to see one's body falling apart --- seeing spots caused by who knows what malady, appearing here and there on one's skin. You will be glad to hear that this morning when I took a shower and washed my wrist, the gray spot went away.

+

2. My tools are in the back garage. For years, every time I've wanted to fix something I had to walk into the back garage to get a tool. And keep going back and forth from the front garage to the back garage because I never had enough tools on hand to do the job. Even a simple job like replacing the bendix in a John Deer mower might require 15 or so tools and a dozen trips. So --- I set up a small bench with enough tools to do simple jobs right by the northwestern overhead door. My wifeís scraping and painting stuff is there, too. My wife is a professional scraper and painter. When I sorted through her stuff and organized it I found 8 or 10 putty knives. Amazing how much stuff accumulates. She puts little name and address stickers on all of her tools. Marsha Skoglund 795 River Road and so on. Today I returned a hammer and three screwdrivers with her name on it to her tool draw in the house. Someone keeps taking them out into the barn. It is silly, but I have a good set of wrenches in Marsha's Rav 4, even though I might only need them once a year. --- And I don't have a set of wrenches in my truck, where I might need them every other day. Iíve got to attend to that. What have you recently organized to make your life easier? Iím thf at gmail dot com.

+

3. Weíve been harvesting the wood in our forest. Our logger friend cuts down and hauls off huge trees, but leaves large limbs and tops behind. Yesterday I went out into the forest primeval and sawed huge oak limbs that scattered the ground into 4-foot lengths, put them on my truck and hauled them out to the front lawn. It is my intent to saw these four-foot oak limbs, some 5 or 6 inches in diameter, into stove lengths, to split them, and to put a big sign on them: For Sale --- Fresh Wood And thereby do my share to contribute to the global warming problem by the burning of carbon fuels. But hej, isn't the bottom line where it's at?

+

4. Two times within the past week Iíve heard political commentators say something about kumbaya. I know that kumbaya is a word in a song but wondered why people would be talking about kumbaya on the evening news. I asked friends on my Facebook page and got all kinds of answers. So I did what I should have done in the first place. I Googled and found this. Recently (as of 2006), "Kumbaya" has been used to refer to artificially covering up deep-seated disagreements. We "join hands and sing 'Kumbaya'" or "it's all 'Kumbaya'" means we pretend to agree, for the sake of appearances or social expediency. The next time you hear Kumbaya on the evening news, remember that your buddy was the first to tell you about it here.

+

5. You are missing out if you donít have a Roku apparatus on your television set. Roku enables you to watch the countless lectures that are now available on YouTube as you vegetate in your favorite chair. There are Yale lectures on Rousseau and Schopenhauer and Evolution and Medicine. My favorite, however, is an informative series by Stamfordís neuroendocrinologist, Robert Sapolsky. He talks about the brain and why we do what we do. You might have read one or more of his popular books. Long before I discovered Professor Sapolskyís lectures on my TV set, I read three of them. One was ďWhy Zebras Donít Get Ulcers.Ē To save you the price of that interesting book, hereís the spoiler. When the Zebra escapes from the lion --- when he stops running and his heart rate returns to normal, he soon forgets about it. A human being would continue to worry about the lion for weeks until hospitalized by heartburn, indigestion, or nausea. When Professor Sapolsky mentioned some grad students who, in the course of an experiment, patted their rat for three seconds, I sat upright in my chair. When the good professor was still in grade school, I was already a grad student at the University of Rochester with my own laboratory rat. I named him Vilkas, which, you might know, is wolf in Lithuanian.

+

6. If youíre not used to working with animals, it takes a while to get on to it. Rats that donít know you are likely to be a bit skittish and make a bid for freedom so you have to learn how to hang onto them. Vilkas got away from me the first time I picked him up and I have a vivid memory of trying to retrieve him from beneath a rack of tape recorders and other recording studio equipment. Although it was around fifty years ago, I seem to recall that Vilkas would gently bite my finger if I put it in front of his nose --- just to check out the texture or to see what it was. Unlike many students in disciplines where it was necessary to ďsacrificeĒ their pet, I took Vilkas home to Maine for the summer. If you ever had a dog, cat or disagreeable spouse, you already know that you can become attached to most anything. We bonded as I spent hours teaching Vilkas to drive a small mechanical toy car. There was a crank on the front of the car. The thirsty Vilkas would push the crank, which started the noisy motor, and jump on the car for his reward. We started with the car up on blocks, but it was my intent to eventually remove them so Vilkas could amaze my friends as he ceremoniously drove into the dining room. Why teach a rat to drive a car? If you are going to teach a rat to press a bar to get a food pellet or a drop of water, you might as well have him pick up some useful skill at the same time.

+

7. Youíll probably be surprised to hear that I wouldnít pat your dog. When I touch a dog I feel I must immediately wash my hands. Anyone who has seen a dog rolling on his back, coating himself with some fresh identifiable substance on the lawn, knows why I need to do this. Iím deathly allergic to cats and horses so touching them was never an option --- although, having read Swift, Iíve always thought of horses as being nice people. Yes, one develops not only a tolerance but a fondness for oneís own pet, and I did. Youíve seen people fondling snakes. My friend Clyde has a pet pig who lives in his house. And there came a time when Iíd walk about with my rat perched on my shoulder. The summer I was home with Vilkas, Jack Neubig from Friendship was building a brick fireplace in the house next door and heíd come over at noon to socialize and eat his dinner with me. One day I went in the next room, put on a sport jacket, and dropped Vilkas down into the sleeve by my armpit. Then I went back into the kitchen and sat down at the table across from my guest. Vilkas slowly crawled down inside my sleeve until he finally stuck his head out by my wrist. He wiggled his whiskers at Jack and smiled a welcome with his big, yellow teeth. Jack Neubig was a tough, old mason who had seen his share of things. But he told me that watching that rat stick his head out of my sleeve at the dinner table was the worst thing he had ever seen in his life.

+

8. You could make your life less complicated if you brought in an efficiency expert who would study you for a week and then tell you how you could change things around --- rearrange your life --- to save you time and energy. The expert would change where you kept your clothing, your tools, and everything else you own. Your habits would be changed around to accommodate the new system, and after you got used to finding things in new places and doing things in a more efficient manner, you'd be able to get a lot more done in a lot less time. Youíve probably already noticed that this way of doing things closely approximates marriage. Just about the time you learn to be comfortable with the new system she decides that she liked it better the way you had it before and moves it all back.

+


This radio show now goes into over 1,000,000 homes in the United States on cable television. Don't ask me how this happened.
The television show is distributed by http://www.pegmedia.org/
Please ask to have The humble Farmer's TV show run on your cable station in your home town.
For more information please call humble at 207-226-7442 or email him at thehumblefarmer@gmail.com

+


Return to top.


Robert Karl Skoglund
785 River Road
St. George, ME 04860
(207) 226-7442
thehumblefarmer@gmail.com
www.TheHumbleFarmer.com

© 2016 Robert Karl Skoglund