July 4 a reminder of what is important in life

I hope you had a good 4th of July. That is time I think a lot of us get wrapped into the festivities and get-togethers and often forget about the lives that were lost so that you and I can have the freedoms we have.

It is one thing to donate your time for something but it is a whole different story to put your life on the line and possibly lose it so that the rest of America can have a great time with freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom to own property and many more freedoms that we often take for granted.

That’s why I think it is extremely important to show respect. Respect for the flag, respect for when someone is praying and respect for others. You may think the opposite of what I stand for by my peculiar sense of humor.

But from a very early age—actually day one—when I adopted the boys they were told to hold the door open for others and particularly for a woman. And that they should say thank you when someone does something for them. In fact, I would often wash off grapes or peel apples for them when they were younger and they soon learned very fast when I handed it to them they had one second to say thank you or I wouldn’t let them have the fruit.

We try to say thank you to all our customers when they sell cattle at the sale. One gal working at the sale said a few years ago that telling the customers “thank you” was simply kissing their rear. I said, “I disagree. The day I get too proud to say thank you then a person is simply too high and mighty.”

I just was corrected. I didn’t know that when someone asks you who your favorite child was that I didn’t know I was supposed to pick one of my own.

If you get a loan at the bank you will be paying on it for 30 years. If you rob a bank you will be out in 10 years.

I was headed to the store and I asked my wife if she wanted anything. She said, “Yes, I want a sense of meaning and purpose in my life. I want fulfillment and completeness within my soul.”

She said, “I want to connect to God and discover the spiritual side of me.”

I hollered back and said, “Be more specific. Do you want beer or vodka?”

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