The Honeymoon is Over
Like any profession there are many do’s and don’ts to consider when working with your spouse. Experience is always the better teacher and the lessons I’ve learned while working with my wife on the farm are usually what you don’t want to do.
I hope what I am about to share will keep newlyweds from tearing up their wedding vows after working together on the farm.
Cows are dumb, your wife is not. While working cattle with the love of your life it’s better to have bite marks on your tongue than to have them on your backside. If you mess up and yell at your wife she will undoubtedly go back to the house, leaving you alone to realize that you are now dumber than a cow.
Do not expect your wife to know what you’re thinking. Be specific with your goal. You might be a whiz at problem solving, but she’ll kick your butt in multi-tasking all day long. I have learned that it is less lethal to share a plan with your wife. This way you can both say “Would’ve, Could’ve and Should’ve,” rather than you blaming her when your plan fails. Nothing turns anger into regret faster than a cursing tongue. If you mess up, she will undoubtedly go back to the house, leaving you alone to realize that you are now the weakest link in the chain of command.
When giving directions to your wife, don’t be overly specific with details. Most of the time a man’s old fashion backwoods rural redneck directions don’t fit a woman’s gene map. When giving your wife directions to where she can find you in the field, try to avoid the four cardinal directions: North, South, East and West. Do not use landmarks that no longer exist or locations where events happened before you met her. A woman’s temperature rises dramatically when she’s lost. If she has to continually ask you “Which way’s East?,” she will undoubtedly go back to the house, leaving you alone to realize that it’s the same distance whether you drive or walk; it just takes a little longer if you have to walk.
A man has a limited number of sorrys he can use in his lifetime, so he should use them wisely. I’m quite certain my wife keeps a tally.
Here’s couple more Rick Friday stories.
Ouch! But, as my kids used to say with a wicked laugh when they saw parents disciplining their misbehaving children in the grocery store, “It’s funny when it’s not you!”