Dancing with Ewes

It's been a busy week at Hammerstead Farms. A week ago tonight we had a mere 9 sheep on the place - today we have 18. And there are three ewes that still haven't popped.

We also have a "bottle baby" - a ewe lamb that was rejected by it's mother. We think that either momma only has enough milk for one, and picked the elder twin, or there's something wrong with this lamb that we can't see. Since this little girl could be quite valuable if she is OK, we'll take our chances with the extra work. So I now not only have sheep in the pastures, I have one on the mud porch.

Herding this enlarged crew is proving somewhat problematic: we really need to get a working dog if we're going to keep any of the newbies (and I'm sure we'll keep a few). Wednesday was especially interesting, as everybody scattered before sunset, with the majority going to the very back of the property, right next to the south fence, which is the entry point for the coyotes. So Kris and I had to hustle them into the paddock, acting like sheepdogs ourselves.

I'm alot slower at 47 than I was at seventeen. After a while, it became apparent that I was not herding anything, nor was I likely to catch anything. But I kept running - what started as a chore and turned into a joke became almost spiritual in essence: I was running like a madman across the pastures, full tilt, staff swinging from over my shoulder, sheep scattering before me in every direction.

I ran just for the sheer exhiliration of the act itself. I know it sounds corny as Hel, but I was truely lost in the moment - I hadn't felt that way since I was a kid. Decidely one of the best "highs" I've ever had - the sun was shining, the wind was in my face, grass was green and sky was blue. It feels like I just got back from a vacation - I've been in a great mood ever since.

The poor flock finally managed to wander into the paddock more or less by itself. Certain, I'm sure, in whatever kind of spongy thought process a sheep has, that their shepherd had gone berserk.

I can only imagine how this must've appeared to others.

Kevyn called it "Dancing with Ewes".

I call it one of the best times of my life.


Sleepin' in the Sun

23:00 /Home | 1 comment | permanent link


Time Records Often Altered, Job Experts Say

There's a lesson in here for all electronic systems: those which do not provide audit trails are easily fungible. Without a physical time card, a record of hours worked, employees are literally at the mercy of management for proof of their shfit time. And that time worked can be shaved to cut costs..

Now, imagine electronic voting with no audit trail ...

Experts on compensation say that the illegal doctoring of hourly employees' time records is far more prevalent than most Americans believe.

(link) [New York Times: NYT HomePage]

00:00 /Technology | 0 comments | permanent link


Canadian Minister Promises to Fix Copyright Law

There's a saying with us engineering types: if it ain't broke, don't fix it! And the Canadian copyright law is one of the few on the planet that ain't broke. So don't fix it!!!

In Canada, we can download Mp3's and their assorted goodness without too much of a hassle, recently the CRIA and their friends lost the court case. Well, it would appear that the new Federal Heritage Minister Helene Scherre, has spoken and those words were: "As minister of Canadian Heritage, I will, as quickly as possible, make changes to our copyright law."

(link) [Slashdot]

00:00 /Copywrongs | 0 comments | permanent link


Brawl Breaks out in Anger Management Session

Guess they were there for a good reason, after all.

A brawl broke out during an anger management assembly at a suburban high school.

(link) [CNN]

00:00 /Humor | 0 comments | permanent link


Technology Resets the Clock

Not here. And that suits me just fine.

When daylight-saving time arrives on Sunday, most electronic gadgets will automatically reset their time clocks. But retailers, expecting a surge of calls from customers anyway, still dread the yearly ritual. By Michelle Delio.

(link) [Wired News]

00:00 /Politics | 0 comments | permanent link