Markets can be vexing at times

Sometimes I feel the longer I’m in this business the less I know. It is so hard to predict what factors sometimes affect the market and at times those same factors don’t bother it at all.

In the fall, it is the most temperamental as you not only have the futures and sometimes negative attitude but a lot of ranchers do not understand that a moderately weaned or short weaned calf might get sick. And most of these feedlots, if they are paying top dollar, they naturally want no problems. On our long-weaned, all summer grass cattle the market was good but with some of the weaned calves the buyers were conservative. There is nothing a sale barn can do unless he can consume several million dollars’ worth of cattle and perhaps have the same problem that some of the buyers were concerned with.

I’m thankful I am not a natural worrier as you could find something to drive yourself off your rocker with at any given week. The help—the futures—the fact of some bringing less than you think they should. The greatness—too full—the list goes on and on. But, thankfully, if you have an honest sale barn that works 100 percent for the seller and never abuses the buyer, you have most of the battle whipped.

I have been told that I have warped sense of humor but that is hard for me to believe. A friend of mine was feeling sick so he said, “In the morning, I am going to the doctor.” So the next morning I texted him and asked him how he was doing. Instead of texting me he just took a picture of himself with IVs behind him that appeared to be in the hospital.

So I texted him back and said, “Did they keep you in the hospital or is that a mortuary?” He texted me back, “Ha-ha.” I said, “I didn’t know whether to send flowers or just write the eulogy.”

A cowboy friend said every year for several years he sent in a chance to be drawn out and get to be one that gets to go on an elk hunt. But four years in a row, no such luck. So the next year he told his secretary to put the word MD behind his name. So she did and sent in the form. She was about 70 years old and did everything by the book.

A few days later the secretary called his house late at night almost in tears and said, “I am so afraid we are going to get in trouble with my lying about you being a doctor.”

He said, “Don’t worry about it—I am an MD, that is mule driver.” And guess what, that year the mule driver got selected.

Editor’s note: Jerry Nine, Woodward, Oklahoma, is a lifetime cattleman who grew up on his family’s ranch near Slapout, Oklahoma.