Farmers and cowboys both spend a great deal of time outdoors for their work. That allows them time to think and has produced some of the most interesting and thoughtful expressions I have heard in a long time. These expressions don’t just apply to working outdoors. They carry over to life in general.
The time spent when these people are riding their tractor or on a horse on the range provides opportunities to think about life and how the world operates. I want to share with you some of my favorite thoughts from them, which will undoubtedly bring moments of thought for you.
”Your fences need to be horse-high, pig-tight and bull-strong.” I’d say that covers it all.
“Life is simpler when you plow around the stump.” Maybe they mean avoid obvious obstacles when possible, especially if you can do it an easier way.
“A bumble bee is considerably faster than a John Deere tractor.” This probably came from experience. What do you think?
“Words that soak into your ears are whispered … not yelled.”
“Meanness don’t jes’ happen overnight.” So, maybe it takes years and experiences to build up that anger! This might help us understand the mean person.
“Forgive your enemies; it messes up their heads.” After all, we are directed to forgive.
“Do not corner something that you know is meaner than you.” No, I don’t think this refers to the mean guy! I’m thinking bear, lion, tiger?
“It don’t take a very big person to carry a grudge.” Life is so much nicer when we forgive and go on.
“You cannot unsay a cruel word.” Oh, how true. There are words we all can remember from our past. Such good advice!
“Every path has a few puddles.”
“When you wallow with pigs, expect to get dirty.”
“The best sermons are lived, not preached.” But sometimes we can react to a well-spoken sermon. The idea is, act like the good person you are supposed to be.
“Most of the stuff people worry about ain’t never gonna happen anyway.” All of us do it … worry that is.
“Don’t judge folks by their relatives.” Oh my! I have to disagree here. Actions and outlooks about life are learned. Expect children to act like their parents. I think you should look at the relatives and think long and hard.
“Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.” This is the hardest thing for the average person. People often want to say something when they think someone is wrong. It is so hard not to say anything, but in the effort to keep peace in the world, this guy says it’s best to keep your mouth shut and I agree. Now all I have to do is do it.
“Live a good, honorable life. Then when you get older and think back, you’ll enjoy it a second time.” Hmmm.
“Don’t interfere with somethin’ that ain’t bothering you none.” A few weeks ago I wrote about some of the events that I witnessed at the airport in the waiting area. I have to say that those were sort of bothering me, but the idea here is … not my circus not my monkeys. Leave them alone if it doesn’t really affect you.
“Timing has a lot to do with the outcome of a rain dance.” Don’t you just love this! Of course, timing is everything in our world.
“If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop diggin’.” This is also another reference to, when you start talking and you realize you’re going the wrong direction and it’s not getting better, just stop talking.
“Sometimes you get, and sometimes you get got.”
“Always drink upstream from the herd.” Egad, good thought.
“Good judgment comes from experience, and a lotta that comes from bad judgment.” Oh wow, this is so true!
“Lettin’ the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin’ it back in.” Could this be more about talking too much and to the wrong people?
“If you get to thinkin’ you’re a person of some influence, try orderin’ somebody else’s dog around.”
“Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Leave the rest to God.”
“Never squat with your spurs on! Cowboys, pay attention to what you’re doing.”
Thank you to those “outdoor guys” for some really good advice.
(Melanie Behrens – firstname.lastname@example.org)
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