How to Solve the Farm Problem

By George! I’ve done it. I’ve solved “The Farm Problem.” Well, really my wife solved it after I asked her if she had seen a hammer recently.

“Which hammer?” she asked. 

“Any hammer,” I said, “The red one or the blue one or the neon green one.” The latter was supposed to glow in the dark in case I ever lost it at night. However, I lost it during the day. 

“No, the last time I saw a hammer it was lying somewhere,” she advised.

I went to check all the usual places a pounding implement might lay, hang, or drop on my farm, but after an extensive search, I chalked up another casualty to the Bermuda Triangle for hammers, tape measures, and quarter-inch wrenches that centers over our farm. 

The Farm Problem, you’ll remember, is the fact that farmers can’t afford to farm. This problem has persisted for eons; in fact, some economists speculate it dates back to when the first nomads gave up hunting and gathering and decided to feed the world. And yet, my wife quickly solved it when I returned home with a new orange hammer from the hardware megastore. (Interestingly, I can’t remember the location of a single hammer on my own farm, but I’ve memorized the aisle and bin number for all tools at the hardware store). Upon my arrival home with a new hammer, she said, “We’d have a lot more money if you’d stop buying the same tools over and over again.”

“Oh contraire,” I replied. “You’re forgetting opportunity costs. By buying a new hammer, I save time searching for an old one–and time is money.”

“Don’t flatter yourself,” she said, “I believe there’s an inverse relationship between the time you spend trying to farm and the direction of our bank account.”

“Hmpph,” I said, “Just think about all that money we made selling homegrown tomatoes on the roadside stand. We even had a few Sacagawea coins in the honor box. Those’ll be worth millions one day.”

“What about that old rusty hammer-mill thing you bought,” she asked, “can’t you just make hammers in it?”

“No, absolutely not. A hammer mill does not make hammers. It grinds grain to smithereens so animals can get the full nutritional value of my homegrown oats, barley, and corn blend.”

“They should call it a grain mill then, not a hammer mill,” she said, “Furthermore, you should just put your tools in their proper place–that would solve the whole farm problem.”

And there you have it. Farm problem solved.

Our tomato stand.

12 thoughts on “How to Solve the Farm Problem

    1. Thanks, most of the red slicing tomatoes were Florida 47, Mountain Fresh Plus, and Celebrity. Heirlooms were Cherokee Purple, Mortgage Lifter, Brandywine. I grew a few Mr. Stripeys just for fun.

  1. LOL, this is why I have my tools and my husband has his. At work he packs 50lb toolbags that are perfectly organized, but at home he piles everything into one carry around tool box that you’re more likely to cut yourself in than find the tool you’re looking for. I, however, know where every single tool is. My tool box isn’t immaculately organized, but I know where that tool is if I’m the one that used it last. Which goes back to my point. He’s only allowed to use my tools if he gives them back to me so I can put them away properly. As a child I lost everything and couldn’t find my shoes to save my life. As a mom and farmer I’m pretty sure I have Mary Poppin’s carpet bag because nothing stays lost if I’m around.

    1. His toolbox sounds familiar–should have a “beware of sharp objects lurking about” sign on it. My wife used to help me organize my tools, but now she’s given up all hope. Some of us are just incorrigible. 😉

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