When do you know you are really a bona fide dairyman? Is it when you milk the first cow? When you buy the first cow? The tenth? The 100th? Or could there be other criteria?
Here are some suggestions. You know you’re a Dairyman if:
To you “Calf Jack” doesn’t refer to a nickname or a tool to change a flat tire.
You have been in many serious discussions about what good manure looks like.
You wince a little when people say the smell of manure smells like money.
You have been inside a bulk tank.
You have done plumbing, electrical work, practiced medicine, and psychoanalysis without a license.
You think your singing voice sounds pretty good in the milk house.
You have asked a veterinarian what the correct dosage of a drug intended for animal use would be for a human about your size. Just curious.
You have ever asked a veterinarian to give you a ride to the hospital.
You have heard 10,000 milk truck driver stories. (About two month’s worth.)
You have stood in the middle of a corral at 3:00 in the morning and stared in wonderment at all the stars in the sky.
Your lovely wife has a Coach handbag, Gucci shoes and Muck Boots.
When a waitress gives you margarine everyone hears about it.
You are very comfortable discussing semen, teat dip, and heat cycles with anyone.
Your kids have their own rubber boots, even the 3-year old.
You can make a cow pee on a Ketone Strip.
You have had a long conversation with a cow about life then loaded her on a trailer and sold her.
You have been asked not to tell your interesting story about parasites to dinner guests.
You know what it is to roll on the ground wanting to cry after getting kicked but when you showed someone the injury there were no marks and no swelling thus--no sympathy.
You have strong opinions about the best gate latches.
You think the primary use for Ziploc bags are for hay samples.
You have cow vaccine in your kitchen refrigerator next to the ketchup.
You have thrown something at the TV because the smiley weather guy just predicted 5 more days of rain.
You have sorting sticks in your primary vehicle.
You have been in a restaurant dining with important people and you shushed them because you just heard someone at another table say, “For baby bulls I’m getting………..”
You have won a radio contest while milking cows.
You brag to someone you can bump a cow at 5 ½ months even though they have no idea what strange medieval ritual you’re talking about.
When the prices are low, equipment breaks down, and rain keeps coming down, you can’t help but think, “Things are only going to get better from here.”
When people friends try to sympathize with you about the 365 days, 7 days a week, 24 hours a day nature of the dairy business and you honestly say, “It’s not that bad, I kind of like it.”
- John W. Wright of Wright, Inc. Dairy in Wendell