National FFA Convention

      The National FFA Convention just recently completed its latest edition.  As a teacher, I always viewed the national FFA convention as a pain in the ass that came at a bad time of year and cost a pile of money to attend.  But, I liked going.  I really liked it when it was in Kansas City. I was usually pissed while in Louisville.  But I loved it in Indy.  No matter where it was, the kids and I had a good time.  We picked up a lot of hardware over the years, but it was other memories that I best remember. 

     There was some really good wins by the Okie goat contingent.  Tanner Miller won a national proficiency award (that would make him a 2 time national champion).  How many national proficiency finalists/winners has Allen Miller helped?  A PILE!  

     Tyler Sanders won the national goat production category. Congrats to the Sanders family. 

     How about Alva FFA with coach Randy Nation ending up 4th overall in the livestock evaluation division?  Kory Dietz was also 4th high individual.  Congrats to that crew representing Alva, Woods County and Oklahoma.  Nation has always been tough with livestock judging teams.  Dietz has compiled quite the resume.  I hope he has a good wether to finish out his senior year. 

     Tyler Schnaithman won the national prepared speaking division.  No, Tyler isn’t goat related, but he does come from a long ling of FFA success.  Plus, that is 5 YEARS in a row that an Okie has won the national prepared speaking contest.  I’ve always bragged on OK FFA public speaking.  This is why.  If you can be competitive in an OK FFA speech contest, well, you are pretty good.  Have I mentioned that I love a good public speaking event?

     On Saturday night, Tammy, Duke and I listened on the blue-tooth in my pickup as TravASS Bradshaw replayed his Burlington FFA judging teams success, disappointment, and then ultimately successes.  Yes, he had two teams competing.  His crops CDE team did well.  He was pleased.  His food science team did very well and ended up 6th in the nation.  Tammy and I love to listen to ag teachers talk with passion about their students ups, downs, wins, losses, tears, group hugs, etc.   

     It is not the banners or trophies that are remembered.  It is the journey to get to a goal that people remember.  Why does everybody remember the PO pig that wins a banner?  The cheap, no-name steer that hits a lick (that doesn’t happen very often) or the goat that has a story behind him:  It’s the journey that makes it worthwhile and no amount of cash can buy you a ride on that turnpike.  Sometimes, it is nothing but horseshoes,shamrocks, lottery tickets, a bucket of luck and an ass load of hard work that makes things happen.  

     I hope a pile of kids had fun in Lousiville.  I absolutely love Churchill Downs.  Shout out to Adair and Kingfisher for their wins.  

Congrats to all the winners this past week.  

     By the way, my Dad tends to know top shelf steakhouses and he constantly rates Jeff Ruby’s in Louisville as one of the top two.  The other being St. Emo’s in Indy.  I’ve been to St. Elmo’s numerous times and it ranks as my all time #1 steakhouse.  I mean, if St. Elmo’s was a goat, it’s address would either be 900 or 191.  So, if the old man says Jeff Ruby’s is good, well, I’m just going to have to find out for myself.  But, he is probably right.