Scot Oliver on the Stump
Mason & Morse Ranch Company Broker Associate, Scot Oliver, shares a story from the "Stump" reflecting on the teachings of farming, ranching, family and friends.
Written By Scot Oliver
First of I am not a writer by any stretch of the imagination. In college, English was my foreign language. I have spent way more time on the back of a horse or behind a steering wheel of a tractor or pickup than behind a desk with pen and paper in hand. In fact, when Bart Miller, Managing Broker of Mason & Morse Ranch Company asked me if I could write a blog article for www.ranchland.com of course I said I could do that!
“That’s what you say when you’re the new guy on the team. Then panic set in as I didn’t really know exactly what a blog was, so I Googled it!. Isn’t that the way we get information these days!"
Definition: “Blog - a regularly updated website or webpage, typically one run by an individual or small group, that is written in an informant or conversational style.”
Well heck yeah, I can do that! I B.S. all the time with my friends and with just about anyone that will give me the stump for a few minutes to listen to me tell a story. I thought it might even be fun.
Then I had to think about what story I should tell about first. I have lots of them as most cowboys do. The hard part was where to start. Then it hit me. Since new to real estate brokerage, I thought I might talk about why I have spent most of my life farming and ranching my own ranch lands, and in my view why others do so or have the desire to own a farm and / or a ranch property.
So, let me tell you a story about a city friend of mine that would always pester me to come to the ranch on the weekends or any other free time he could muster.
One evening after stacking hay all day, not round bales, as I was just getting started on my own and no money to buy a round baler, but square bales hauled on a wagon and stacked in the top of an old dairy barn. I lived in the south then and hay had to be stacked inside or it would mold and rot quickly. Anyways, my friend and I were sitting on the tailgate throwing back a few cold ones and just talking, shoot`n the breeze. Then he asked why I chose to live so far out from town and why I liked to farm and ranch?
Then he proceeded to tell me about all the money he made and how little he had to work for his money. He continued to blow his horn on how he was a champion body builder and about all the fame and recognition he had received. [ All those muscles didn’t help him any in the hay barn any…LOL]
He could not understand why I wasn’t in town making the big bucks as well. Instead, settling for uncertain pay and long hours of hard labor. Well, usually I have a smart-ass answer but for some reason I hesitated, I knew he really didn’t understand country folk at all. Why we did what we did and lived where we do. Most of the time I don’t bother trying to explain why. If they don’t already get why they never will.
Then, I asked him why he would drive three hours down to my ranch to be here if the city was so great! He stopped talking for a moment and a strange look came over his face. One that resembled a cow staring at a new gate.
A few minutes passed then he said, “I guess it’s the peace and quiet I like the best and the stillness of my mind when I’m here. You are really kind of free here.”
We didn’t talk much more about the subject as we were called in for supper. A nice big home raised steak, fresh greens from the garden and homemade bread. None of which he had ever had the chance to eat that fresh before. Well he went home, back to the big city the next morning. He said he had a fantastic time and was looking forward to his next visit.
A few weeks passed and I got a very tragic call from him. He told me that his wife and 3-year-old little boy were with him at a party the following weekend. They were all having fun when they noticed that his son was missing. They were frantic and looked for him everywhere. Then they saw him at the bottom of their friend’s pool. Their son had drowned. What do you say? Not much but you’re so sorry. It was terrible. He asked if he could come down to the ranch and I told him of course, whenever he was able and that he was always welcome.
Time passed and he showed up at my ranch. That evening we found ourselves on that same old pickup tailgate throwing back a few again. There was not as much talk and good times as before. We just sat and I let him enjoy the quiet as he once did. I just wanted to be there for him as any good friend would do. After a long silence, he said “Scot, I think I understand you a lot better now. Life is so short, enjoy every minute. Do the things you love and love the ones you’re with.” He couldn’t say anymore and nothing else needed to be said as we were both choked up. We farm and ranch because it is in our blood and we love what we do. It’s not a job it’s our life. I was blessed to have this lifestyle. Enjoy the little things because that’s all that really matters. God, family, friends and your way of life. Enough said.
Well thanks for letting me have the stump for a bit and reading my first blog. As I was writing this I had a different ending at first. One that was more upbeat and funny. But as I took a break from writing, memories of my friend’s son came back to me and I had to amend my story because life is about all the lives you touch and the people that you meet along the way.
I’m excited to be part of MMRC and have enjoyed the quality people I have met so far. All the people at Mason & Morse Ranch Company are pretty much the same as far as the honesty, integrity and credibility goes; Where your word still means everything and a handshake can still seal a deal.
Thanks for the opportunity and proud to be partnered with this firm. Give me a call or shoot me over an email sometime and lets discuss finding your next farm or ranch.