0

Book Four “Golden Days and Close Calls” is NOW AVAILABLE!

My fourth book, Golden Days and Close Calls, Seasons of Adventure on a Farm. It is a collection of all three books of the trilogy.

The first three books are not scheduled to be reprinted. Once I am out of stock, they won’t be available from me. Book three, Close Calls on the Farm, Off to School had a limited print run and will be the rarest of the three.  Book one, Close Calls on the Farm,  Survival of the Funniest is sold out, but some resellers have copies of it and book two, Close Calls on the Farm, Second Chances.  I only have a handful of book two, Second Chances.

I appreciate all of you that have purchased a book or two and hope you will consider the compilation of the trilogy. Hard cover copies will be available, but I think the regular soft cover will be the most popular and will be printing way more of them. Also it will be available as an eBook.  Cost for the new book is  $17.95 paperback, $33.95 hardcover. eBooks $3.99 and available from all platforms and readers.

click here to order Golden Days and Close Calls

Again, Thanks to all of you that have purchased books.

sincerely,

Alex

May 11, 2017

UntitledAlexFavicon.jpg

0

Air Time in Biology Class

Just walking in to our high school biology class was exciting for me. Instead of charts and posters of chemical symbols or notices and pictures, the class room on the second floor of my high school was filled with artifacts and smells from the world outdoors.

A six foot sail fish was mounted on the back wall, the antlers of whitetail deer and the various bones and skeletons and skulls were all of great interest to me as I walked in with the rest of my ninth grade class.

Decidedly feminine squeals of fear cut through the normal boy chatter when my sister and her friends, seeking the farthest desk from the teacher suddenly realized they were sharing their personal space with a boa constrictor. The six foot snake was secure behind glass in a light bulb heated enclosure, but the young ladies took the opportunity to broadcast their vulnerability.

“Wait until feeding time,” predicted classmate Gary. Like most of the boys in our school, Gary had heard the gruesome blow by blow of rat versus snake from veteran upperclassmen. And mostly unsubstantiated rumors of an empty cage circulated from time to time during lunch hours. … Continue Reading

0

Off the Dock and to the Hospital (from Close Calls on the Farm: Off to School)

by Alex R. Weddon, editor/publisher

The lake on our farm had a shifting muck bottom that swallowed objects. Eyeglasses, bottles of pop, a Browning shotgun and at least one switchblade lie in the murky deep. And broken cement blocks, once used as support of an oak slab that made a diving board.

When the two inch thick plank split, the blocks were tossed forward into the lake. Their sharp edges patiently lying in wait eight feet below the peaceful surface. A foot was gashed open on one during a  hot, sultry Fourth of July in the early 1970s. Two friends were with me on the dock in mid afternoon. We had shot our share of minnows with our BB guns, touched off various packs of firecrackers, and floated big explosives on a pie tin, covered in popcorn and pushed away from our  drifting boat. The noise and blizzard of flaming kernels brought lots of laughs. Then swimming to cool off. Jeff, as near a native as any of us, jack-knifed in and when he surfaced, announced he had hit something with his toes. Maybe a monster sturgeon or treasure chest. He dove for a closer inspection, surfaced and made the dock. … Continue Reading

0

Protocols of Romance, from book three: Close Calls on the Farm, Off to School.

Dating in high school in the 1960s, and most likely today, meant conforming to a variety of socially accepted behavior proscribed by peers and chaperones.

Boy-girl interactions during adult supervised school hours and those of weekend dates were as different as animal hibernation and the rutting season.

Following a school week of classes, studying, and longing looks to and from the opposite sex, the ringing of the last bell of the school day triggered a spirited galloping not unlike the starting clang at a horserace, with unbridled passion and roses waiting for the winners. A common field of contest was the Friday night dance after home games. Teenage awkwardness, fueled by rock and roll and poor lighting, often became painfully public. Asking someone for the first time to dance could result in heart pounding acceptance or embarrassment. The latter causing one to remain cool and move on or commit the equivalent of social Hari-Kari; acting indifferent and bad-mouthing the rejecting suitor.
… Continue Reading

0

FREE .pdf version of Close Calls On The Farm: A Sampler

here is a . pdf of the sampler for Close Calls on the Farm, Hope you enjoy it! not even one meg in size, so feel free to distribute. Thanks!

click on this:

CloseCallsOnTheFarm-ASampler

0

Lady and the Sleigh

Lady and the Sleigh

Most of the animals on our farm were registered stock. Although the bloodlines were pure, the animal’s disposition was often up for question. Purebred animals could go off the deep end more easily than a mixed breed, it seemed. Sometimes I knew what caused it, sometimes I didn’t.

It was pretty easy to figure out what triggered a wild reaction of a horse one November weekend years ago. She was the oldest and most docile horse on the farm. Lady was a tall, fat Tennessee Walker mare. She had been on the farm for years and was the first horse my twin sister Amy rode.

My twin had taught herself to shinny up the left front leg of the gentle horse and end up on her back, ready to ride, at the age of three. Our older sister Patrice first rode a pony, and then quickly moved on to showing horses. The two sisters could manage any horse on the farm by the time they were twelve and nine years of age.

I had just knocked an arm long icicle from the garage roof and was looking through it at the low white sun in the overcast sky when Amy trotted up. “Patrice wants you to get the old sleigh out so Lady can take us for a ride,” she relayed. We weren’t surprised that Patrice made plans for a holiday drive using the ancient sleigh stored under tarpaulins in our garage/corn crib. … Continue Reading

0

First Cutting

Putting up hay doesn’t take as many hands today as it did on our farm in the 1960s. Big round bales of over eight hundred pounds have replaced the sixty to eighty pound twine-bound bales of yore.  Round or small bales, the first cutting is still the most lush and desirous.
As spring warmed our farm with sun filled days our alfalfa and timothy fields grew and flowered. The lush crop awaited the first cutting, crowded stalks nodding with every breeze in various greens and purples. When Dad judged the crop ready and weather pattern aligning, he began preparations for harvest. To start the work, he pulled on a fresh pair of white goatskinned gloves and fired up the tractor. He backed the Ford  into the pole barn and attached the sickle bar hay mower to his tractor’s PTO (power take off) three-point hitch. The mower’s cutting bar was a flattened ribbon of steel, about five inches wide and eight feet long. It was basically a saw with eight feet of Tyrannosaurus Rex sized teeth, a wicked and dangerous piece of equipment. The standing hay would topple over the ratcheting blade in cascading waves.
Unfortunately, the first mowing coincided with nesting season for ground birds, especially pheasants. Try as he could to avoid it, Dad would mow over a nest with the hen protecting her clutch and holding her ground unto death. Because of this, Dad rode the tractor alone. It was customary for at least one of us to ride along with him when plowing or cultivating or raking hay, but he had to concentrate on the mower blade. He knew how quickly it could cut and kill.
Bozo, our liver and white Springer spaniel almost lost both his back legs to the mower. The birds that ran had the dog bounding through the field and the mower caught him from behind. Dad stopped but not before the blade gnashed Bozo’s back legs to the bone. … Continue Reading

0

School Fights and Bullying, Beating the Odds of Getting Beaten

From “Close Calls on the Farm; Off to School,” to be released in 2014.  The third  book of  the trilogy “Close Calls on the Farm

by Alex Weddon

Bullying in school is regarded today as a problem that deserves more attention. During the 1960s when I was in school, getting beaten up was considered unavoidable.

I don’t remember anyone being called a bully in my school. Back then, a bully was someone that picked on other kids,  threatening violence if they didn’t get their way.  A punk like that in my class would eventually stop because nobody I hung around with would take it for long. Bullying was more of an incident or a flare up than a mean kid.  Fighting usually happened only after argument, yelling and threats didn’t work to dissuade the aggressor. By then, a crowd would be forming to see what happens.

I don’t remember the first time I was involved in a school yard fight. I’m sure it is because I lost. Fights were over in my elementary school when one stopped fighting or said “Uncle.”

As the smallest kid in my class I was an easy target, and over time and bruises developed a humorous banter to deflect most insults, threats and entreaties to combat.  I had fights in every grade until the end of my sophomore  year in high school.  By then I was wearing expensive braces and eyeglasses and just wanted to be left alone.

Most altercations broke out by accident. Fighting in elementary school wasn’t a pugilistic event, but more of a push, slap, jab and a rare thrown punch. After a perceived assault, retaliation was the paramount option, and swift action was to your advantage.

Almost all of the fights I saw in elementary school ended after someone was on the ground. Once someone was pinned down, the fight was over and the one on top stood up and stepped away. The circle of kids would then close in and start the fight replay, the recollections embellished with each version.

During one lunch hour recess of my fifth grade school day,  I heard  a breathless runner shout “Your sister’s surrounded by girls that want to beat her up.” … Continue Reading

0

Second Book Just Released!

Willah Weddon on Dad's 350. I think this was in 1970. Mom on Dad’s 350. I think this was in 1970.

Close Calls on the Farm; Second Chances is now available!

Pick up a copy or two in Grass Lake, signed books are waiting at Reeds Barbering, Victorias On the Hill, Grass Lake Pharmacy and Amazon.com and  at www.closecallsonthefarm.com or
email:  thegrasslaketimes@gmail.com.

In Chelsea, Zou Zous Coffee and Edibles, Chelsea Print and Graphics, Reed’s Barbering, Just Imagine Books and The Pointe party store on Cavanaugh Lake.

In Stockbridge, Ransoms Shop Rite and The Stage Stop Restaurant

In Munith, the Munith Cafe and also at Gee Farm’s

Close Calls on the Farm, Second Chances, Jones Lake Press, Ten dollars, 156 pages.

0

Book Review of “Close Calls on the Farm: Survival of the Funniest”

Michigan Barn

Chelsea Update publisher and owner Lisa Allmendinger is a gifted and talented writer. An example of her powerful insight can be seen here: http://chelseaupdate.com/

Pages ... 1 2