Tag Archives: David Wilke

My Happy Birthday Song



From a generation that didn’t trust anyone over thirty, a reckless time during the Viet Nam War when few of us envisioned achieving thirty years, seventy is indeed an invigorating landmark, an open gate to new opportunities to make the most of life. I was pleasantly astounded when I received this audio file yesterday morning from our dear friends David Wilke and Denise Withnell, whom we will see in San Francisco to watch the Giants play the Dodgers at AT&T Park on Sunday as we celebrate Dave’s 70th as well.


A storm off the Hawaiian Islands has arrived in the Bay Area as it edges south with a half-inch predicted here for tomorrow. With grass high, calves growing, rain coming, we leave the ranch in good hands.


Moon Suit

I received this advertisement from Progressive Rancher, one of the many free publications put out by drug and animal health corporations:



I was thinking about ordering 400 cow suits when I noticed the holes in the helmet for horns, a flaw to be sure for moon-grazing where oxygen can leak out, and then not all of our cows have horns and none grow the same. We could dehorn the cows and plug the holes with corks.

Closer inspection also reveals no air pack, no oxygen, just hoses recirculating cud breath and methane, perhaps a walking bomb for the military. But the real flaw, and I remember as a boy the woman who suggested to my father that we put pants on our cattle to cover their private parts, is that there are no zippers for defecation, urination, procreation or for nursing calves.

All of this is mute on the moon, of course, where there’s nothing to graze anyway, even if the helmet was configured to allow it. From the Amazon of another time, I’ll order mine from Mother Goose:

Hey, diddle, diddle,
The cat and the fiddle,
The cow jumped over the moon;
The little dog laughed
To see such sport,
And the dish ran away with the spoon.