So, I sat down with my favorite son and reflected on the past year the other evening. I said “Duke, you had the reserve grand wether at the state fair, you had a division champion at Tulsa and was 4th overall, you had the reserve grand wether at Phoenix, the grand hog at Phoenix, the grand wether at Enid and a reserve division and 4th overall at OYE.”

In his flat line, monotone fashion with a quick head bob, he said, “Yep.”

I said, “Do you know what you call that?”

Once again, in his flatline, monotone fashion, he answered, “A good year.”

I said, “No, that is what you call a career.”

He said, “Hhmm. Let’s do it again next year.”

I don’t know if he understands what a career is or if he means it. If you have ever talked to Duke, you can’t tell if he is excited or not. Some say it is genetics. Must come from his mother.

Several have asked if I am upset that Duke was not grand or reserve at the city. Nope. Not upset in the least. Anyday, that my kid is in the final drive with the calibers of Braden Schovanec, Lora Riley, Trent Boles and Bree Taylor, I’m pretty pumped. I love good competition and I enjoy winning. But I enjoy the journey more than the win. I like an animal with a story and a cheap price tag. I like my kid having to work harder than the rest.

Duke and I continued talking about his goat “Spasm”. He is a Gallagher goat that was tag 1060 at their June sale. I was way into him, but he cost like $2,750 bucks. I was prepared to give more, but then he wouldn’t have stayed at my house as I am somewhat low rent. What did I like about the goat when he was little? He was huge loined, big ribbed, good boned, smooth hided and twisted eared. I didn’t like that he tracked a little narrow and was dumb as all get out. The goat never changed. He was always huge loined, square racked, deep twisted, good boned, smooth hided, twisted eared, a little narrow and dumb as hell. But Duke had to work to get him shown.

Spasm ended up being res. grand at the State Fair of OK, Grand at Major County, Grand at Enid District, res. div. 3 and 4th overall at OYE. And further proof that he was a good one– he was last in his class at the Fairview Local Show. If you ever want a good one beat, take them to the local show. It happens. I would way rather get beat at the local than at a show that mattered. Every kid needs to win their local and then a county. But, once you do, notch that one up and never worry about it again. Let somebody else win it after that.

We show because I think every kid needs to be involved with animals and agriculture. We show because I like the social skills kids learn from working, winning and losing. We show because we can do it as a family. We show because we have fun with other families and, if you know me, if I can’t have fun doing it…I don’t want to do it. We show because we like meeting new people, dealing with other breeders and helping new show families learn what it takes. I like the fact that my kids know most of the people in the show barn. I like it when other breeders want my kids to feed their animals. I also like that my kids have had targets as ones to beat. If you can outwork, outshow and outfeed my kids, then I don’t mind getting beat. Hats off to you. I love good competition. Sure, I could keep all the goats that I raise, buy and coach and could guarantee that my kids win. But that wouldn’t be fun. I’ll still sell them, feed something a little off, work hard and if we don’t win, there is always next year. Maybe, we’ll just have another career next year.


Leave a Reply