Speak Softly And Carry A Big Stick At The Ranch Pen



Speak softly and carry a big stick~Theodore Roosevelt

The format for today’s post in case you’re afraid it’s just another political rant:

  • Political rant
  • Old people story
  • A heads-up about coffee and elephant dung
  • advice for preachers
  • the latest in rural fashion
  • Draft horse barrel racing
  • An opinion poll and a really cute grandkid

Do you feel safe? Neither do I

Usually I try to avoid politics, but I feel like the world is imploding around me. We have public beheadings of Americans, we have persecutions of Christian people on every hand, we have terrorists gaining strength at a terrifying rate, we have ebola and other diseases and it seems to me like it’s because the government is hamstrung by social engineering and politically correct mumbo jumbo to the point no strong action can be taken on anything–not even to try to keep the tax base citizens of this country safe.

As a girl growing up out on the farm, and then later as a smallish, ultra-conservative Christian woman raising boys and living in a man’s world, I pretty much adopted Teddy Roosevelt’s motto: Speak softly and carry a big stick. It was usually a figurative big stick, but in drastic situations it was literal. I didn’t get a lot of back talk.

Today, you know who I miss? President George W and the big stick he carried.

Old people problems

St Louis arch

View from the bottom of the Gateway Arch in St. Louis

Recently, Gramps and I drove our old people car to St. Louis where we didn’t see any riots. That, however, doesn’t mean there weren’t any. It just means we didn’t see them because we were too busy trying to get un-lost most of the time. We stopped for lunch at a Steak and Shake where we met a young man with family in a small town eleven miles from our house.  All roads lead back to Oklahoma, I kid you not. At Steak and Shake, I tossed back a lot of iced tea, forgetting about the old lady bladder I own. The tea was delicious.


We left Steak and Shake in our old people car and drove over to the Gateway Arch. We parked in an underground parking garage then wandered toward the arch, which was a pretty long hike. We were accosted by some people handing out pamphlets and practicing some type of yoga-ish poses. Even though I admired the grit in their gizzards it must take to accost old people on vacation, I always do not like to be accosted by pamphlet bearers. Gramps and I avoided eye contact and hurried away. We arrived at the base of the arch looking lost and confused (see above). There were no restrooms in sight. But that doesn’t mean there weren’t any–it means we didn’t see any. As a result, our visit to the arch–one of the seven wonders of the modern world–was cut short by the demands of the old lady bladder. We retraced our steps at speed, flashing past the yoga people so fast they could only flutter their pamphlets at us with a despairing cry.

No Need To Thank Me

Today, Gramps was away at noon, so I read the World magazine while eating my lunch. Imagine my surprise to see pictorial evidence that in northern Thailand, people feed elephants coffee beans then dig through the fresh elephant dung for any undigested ones. The repurposed recovered coffee beans are flavored by the elephant’s digestive process making Black Ivory Coffee the “world’s rarest and most expensive coffee”. After studying the picture, I was almost sure I tasted something foul in my salad.

Advice for preachers

In another World magazine, I came across this excellent advice to preachers: “Don’t touch the girls, don’t touch the gold, and don’t touch the glory.”

The girls of the Ranch Pen–human and equine–sporting the latest in rural fashion



Like riding a tank

My blogger friend, Liz, from Mad Bush Farm in New Zealand, turned me on to draft horse barrel racing, which I had never seen before, but find fascinating. The power beneath those saddles is unbelievable and the horses look like they are much harder to handle than the run-of-the-mill mount. Give it a quick watch and see what you think.


Results of the opinion poll


The votes are in and according to the latest opinion poll out here at the Ranch Pen, the government’s job isn’t to win votes for a particular party, satisfy lobbyists, or cram our kids’ heads full of politically correct claptrap. Government’s main job should be protecting its’ citizenry from enemies, foreign and domestic–citizens like the little grandson, Tater, and all the other precious ones like him.

Thanks for letting me get that off my chest and until next time, God keep all y’all safe from disease and meanness in this ol’ world, and enjoy David Wesley singing Whom Shall I Fear.


*This artist doesn’t necessarily endorse the blog, I just love his music.


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