Marsha and humble September 30, 2007




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Below is a rough outline of the rants from The humble Farmer radio show week of April 15, 2012




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Rants April 15, 2012

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Cousin Truman Hilt stopped by the other morning. Among other things, he said that last week while helping Amy move some things around inside their house he hit a toe so hard that it swelled up as big as his big toe. The next day it turned red. And he said that didnít bother him because sore toes can turn red. But the day after that when he got out of bed, he looked at it and it had turned white. Of course he got scared. And he hollered, ďMy toe has turned white.Ē And Amy said, ďYou old fool. I put a band aid on it yesterday.Ē

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2. Here's a hoax email that arrived from a friend who has MBA under his name. Having great respect for this person I naturally opened the link to a page that said that Amy Livingston, a single mom in Rockland, was earning $15,000 a month on her computer. I was invited to join the club. There on the page was a picture of Rocklandís Amy Livingston to prove that it was true. But I am 76 years old and in that time I have spent a lot of time on the streets and in the stores in Rockland. And when I looked at Amy's picture I knew that there is no way a woman who looked better than anything I've ever seen on the arm of Regis Philbin --- or any of those other senile old fools who try to boost their TV ratings with beautiful young girls --- I knew that no matter where Amy lived this woman would not remain an unmarried mother for long. And if you come right down to it, the last woman to look that good in Rockland was Estelle Sayward or Joanie Williamson, both of whom are probably now closer to 80 than 26. So, says I to me, ďThis must be a hoax.Ē My question to you is: How did this bug get into the computer of a computer-savvy MBA to be distributed to his many friends? Doesn't Microsoft Security Essentials protect us from spreading bad bugs? And if it doesnít, what good is it? What did my friend do wrong? You see, Iím asking you to tell me the difference between opening an infected web page, if there is such a thing, and downloading an infected file. Iím thehumblefarmer at gmail dot com and Iíd like to know more about these things so I can save you and my other friends some grief by blabbing everything I know.

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3. A friend recently mentioned being a fiscal conservative. I consider myself to be a fiscal conservative, because I believe in improving the efficiency of delivering services by finding innovative ways to do more with less. This is the system enjoyed by most of the populations in Northern Europe. --- Which is why they are able to deliver better healthcare than we have here --- at a much lower cost. You see, over there there aren't so many hands in the pie as there are here in our privatized system. The way one of my "health" providers bills my health insurance company wouldn't be allowed by fiscal conservatives. You will recall my telling you about a chin strap that my "health provider" had billed at $220. I found one exactly the same on line for $19.95. A German man told me that people wouldn't tolerate such foolishness in Northern Europe. People don't howl here because they think it is the insurance company that gets robbed --- not realizing that it is this kind of overcharging that jacks up their insurance premiums. Also, as a fiscal conservative I don't believe in wasting your tax dollars on our constant wars. I recently saw a program about a man who was highly decorated for shooting Japs on Okinawa when he was 22 who was, at the age of 82, drinking sake with a Japanese gentleman who had fought against him in the same theater. At present Iím reading about the needless wars between England and France in the 14th century. Back then when young men would come home from battle, they would band together into "companies" and roam about their own country, looting and killing --- just out of habit. It was the rich against the poor, then as now. Nothing changes, which accounts for the book's title: A Distant Mirror. And then I read about Watson. You will remember that Doctor Watson served in the Second Anglo-Afghan War. Hard to find an imperialistic country that hasn't had the stuffing kicked out of it in Afghanistan. And out of the thousands of wars mankind has engaged in since the beginning of time, how many of them served a purpose other than to put money into a pocket where it didn't belong? Fiscal conservatives unite.

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4. I hope you kids are going to check out Northern Europe next summer. I lived over there when I was a kid of 24 and Iíve been back many times since. Itís an eye opener. Don't believe anything anyone tells you, either pro or con about the life style in Northern Europe. Don't believe what you read about their great education system and how you can get through college including a PhD without borrowing tens of thousands of dollars. Donít believe what you hear about their universal healthcare or their paid vacations. Go there and see these things for yourself. Hang out with and talk with your peers from Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Holland and Finland. Live in hostels, bike around. I have a friend who is 82-years-old who is going to bicycle around in Europe this summer. If he can stand the strain, you can, too. Unless your father earns over a million dollars a year, when you come home and see a Republican sign on his lawn you might feel you know something he doesnít and that you have something to tell him. He won't believe you, but at least you'll know what you're talking about.

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5. I canít remember who sent me this bit of foolishness. It might have been David in Washington, Maine who told me that Osama Bin Laden was living with 3 wives in one compound, and never left the house for 5 years. It is now believed that he may have called the US Navy Seals himself.

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6. Ever hear of the AutoBike? We are not talking about an electric bike here but a bicycle that shifts gears by itself as needed. Because I know you are like me in that you are interested in new and useful things, here is a letter I got back when I sent an email to AutoBike for more information. He says more about the company than how the shifting rig actually works, but I think you can find out how it works on line. He says: ďGood evening Mr. Skoglund, Sean Simpson, the CEO of AutoBike, LLC and my son, forwarded your e-mail on to me because Iím the VP Marketing/R&D for AutoBike and Iím very interested in feedback received from visitors to our website. Thereís a good reason that you arenít familiar with AutoBike, LLC. Itís because we are a new start-up company, formed in January 2011. The founders are two young GM engineers, a young financial analyst and me, a 55 year old Research Manager for a Fortune 100 chemical company and father of the CEO. The idea for us to pursue an automatic-shifting bicycle came to me while watching Seniors with very nice multi-speed bikes never shifting gears. I thought that it was a waste and wanted a means of making their riding experience more enjoyable without them having to go through a long learning curve. I mentioned the idea to my son, Sean, and he, being an engineer, immediately went to work to see if it was feasible. After some tinkering, he stated that it was and we decided to start a company to build automatic-shifting bikes, especially designed for Seniors not wanting the complication of learning to shift. We chose the company name, AutoBike, LLC, not knowing that there was a previous bike called Autobike that failed in the marketplace. The reason that youíve never seen one of our bikes before is because we havenít sold any yet. We have a few prototypes that we are using to get rider feedback so that we donít wind up building bikes that our potential market doesnít want, but thatís it so far. The website was created to introduce our vision to the public. The video was actually part of a required video for a student business plan competition. Two of the founders are graduate students at the University of Michigan and have participated in several college-run business plan competitions. I understand that you didnít care for the music used, our future videos will have narration instead of music. While that music doesnít bother me, weíre grateful that you took the time to tell us that it bothered you. That certainly wasnít our intention. If you ever get stuck for guests or have your curiosity peaked by the above, Iím sure I can talk my son into sharing a microphone with you, telling our humble story. Regards, Mark Simpson Co-founder AutoBikeĒ And, if youíve ever seen any more about one of these automatic shifting bikes, I hope youíll send me a web page where I can read more about them.

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7. Thank you for sending me these things that you think are interesting. Hereís a great quote you or someone else sent me. It is by Archie Bunker and it has to do with the fact that we are living in a "faith based" society. Belief over fact. As Archie Bunker said, "That's what your faith is, ya meathead--believing what no-one in his right mind would believe." Thatís so good I have to repeat it: As Archie Bunker said, "That's what your faith is, ya meathead--believing what no-one in his right mind would believe."

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8. Here's a curious item. A skydiving instructor in Maine dies after a hard landing and someone wrote below the item, "He was too young to die." I have a friend in Dover-Foxcroft who is 88 and if he were to drop in his tracks this afternoon I'm sure he would say the same thing about himself.

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9. Youíve heard me talk about these things. Clint Eastwood riding his horse down through a field with only two wagon tracks in the grass. The people who made the movie had never lived rural in 1940 when every kid knew that if you had two wagon tracks, there would be a beaten path between them where the horses had walked. And then there is Crocodile Dundee who is spearing a fish in the water. He stands there silent, poised. He strikes and brings up his spear with a fish neatly impaled --- through the side. Look for it and laugh the next time you see that movie. Since when have fish made a habit of swimming through the water on their sides? Ok, it was an Australian fish and they might swim on their sides there. This was brought to mind by several other curious things I have seen in the NCIS program I watch. They run out of gas. Imagine federal crime-fighting agents leaving the garage in a car that has not been topped off? The phone rings, they have to rush off to a crime scene, and the boss says, ďGas up the car.Ē Can you believe that they wait until there is a body on the street before they put gas in their garaged car? And that there is no shop foreman who takes care of these things? And then there are the super agents who turn their backs for just long enough to let someone escape. And the super-super agent who is distracted on the beach just long enough to let some super criminal get the drop on him. These things canít happen. If I were writing movie scripts, they wouldnít. How many times did the bad guys ever get the drop on Sherlock Holmes or Hercule Poirot?

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

© 2012 Robert Karl Skoglund