My mother told me I said to her, at age three, 'I'm going to go to Italy and get my father in a tractor.' 'You've never seen quite so fierce a little boy as you were,' she told me. She tried to explain that I couldn't get my father in a tractor. Apparently I looked at her and narrowed my eyes and said 'In that case, I'm going in a double-decker bus,' and stomped off. Which is kind of funny, but it's very sad, as well.
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they only trusted the wisdom of people brighter and more worldly than themselves when it was expressed in the vocabulary and style of rural idiots. In his guise as Brazenydol, he had once had a contract with DARPA to teach a team of physicists the basic terminology of tractor pulls so that they could give an acceptable explanation of omniwavelength stealth to a Congressional committee that didn't understand tractor pulls, either.
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I like places like this, " he announced. I like old places too, " Josh said, "but what's to like about a place like this?" The king spread his arms wide. "What do you see?" Josh made a face. "Junk. Rusted tractor, broken plow, old bike." Ahh... but I see a tractor that was once used to till these fields. I see the plow it once pulled. I see a bicycle carefully placed out of harm's way under a table." Josh slowly turned again, looking at the items once more. And i see these things and I wonder at the life of the person who carefully stored the precious tractor and plow in the barn out of the weather, and placed their bike under a homemade table." Why do you wonder?" Josh asked. "Why is it even important?" Because someone has to remember, " Gilgamesh snapped, suddenly irritated. "Some one has to remember the human who rode the bike and drove the tractor, the person who tilled the fields, who was born and lived and died, who loved and laughed and cried, the person who shivered in the cold and sweated in the sun." He walked around the barn again, touching each item, until his palm were red with rust." It is only when no one remembers, that you are truely lost. That is the true death.
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Well, what you ding this kind of work for-against your own people?" "Three dollars a day. I got damn sick of creeping for my dinner-and not getting it. I got a wife and kids. We got to eat. Three dollars a day and it comes every day." "But for your three dollars a day fifteen or twenty families can't eat at all. Nearly a hundred people have to go and wander on the roads for your three dollars a day. Is that right?" "Can't think of that. Got to think of my own kids." "Nearly a hundred people on the road for your three dollars. Where will we go?" "And that reminds me, you better get out soon. I'm going through the dooryard after dinner... I got orders wherever there's a family not moved out-if I have an accident-you know, get too close and cave in the house a little-well, I might get a couple of dollars. And my youngest kid never had no shoes yet." "I built this with my hands... It's mine. I built it. You bump it down-I'll be in the window with a rifle... " "It's not me. There's nothing I can do. I'll lose my job if I don't do it. And look-suppose you kill me? They'll just hang you, but not long before you're hung there'll be another guy on the tractor, and he'll bump the house down. You're not killing the right guy." Across the dooryard the tractor cut, and the hard, foot-beaten ground was seeded field, and the tractor cut through again; the uncut space was ten feet wide. And back he came. The iron guard bit into the house-corner, crumbled the wall and wrenched the house from its foundation so that it fell sideways, crushed like a bug... The tenant man stared after [the tractor], his rifle in his hand. His wife beside him, and the quiet children behind. And all of them stared after the tractor.
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Mr. Pritchard! What are you doing? Is that O-soto-gari? No! It is not! It is a yak mating with a tractor! That is really very very not very good! My grandfather is weeping in Heaven, or he would if there were such a place, which there is not because religion is a mystification contrived by monarchists! Again! Again, and this time do it properly!
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It's like if every single male artist dressed up as farmers. In every video they were on a farm. Whether it was Jason Derulo or Oasis, they're always on a tractor, they're always surrounded by sheep and always in boots. And all the songs are about enjoying farming, and this is all you've had for 10 years - you'd think you were going mad.
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I have a constituency with 52,000 people and a million sheep. I was in one village where a local kid was run over by a tractor. They took him to Carlisle, but they couldn't be bothered to wait at the hospital. So they put him in a darkened room for two weeks, then said he was fine. But I'm not so sure he was.
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You know, when Arnold Palmer came on TV with an old tractor and told me to buy Pennzoil, I bought that, and when Dale Jarrett advertises UPS, I can go along with that, too. But I don't think having an 18-year-old, somebody who's probably gotten five packages in his life and they were all 'Girls Gone Wild' videos, tell me what delivery service I should use would have much effect on me.
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'The Sandberg Game' comes up all the time. Fans tell me where they were. They were driving down the highway, they were in the bleachers, they were downtown listening on the radio, they were on the farm on a tractor. I've heard all the stories where people have been. They're just amazed by the ending of the game and the thrill of it.
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If we were to go back in time 100 years and ask a farmer what he'd like if he could have anything, he'd probably say he wanted a horse that was twice as strong and ate half as many oats. He would not say he wanted a tractor. The point is, technology changes things so fast that many people aren't sure what the best solutions to their problems might be.
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My father kept me busy from dawn to dusk when I was a kid. When I wasn't pitching hay, hauling corn or running a tractor, I was heaving a baseball into his mitt behind the barn... If all the parents in the country followed his rule, juvenile delinquency would be cut in half in a year's time.
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Unfortunately, the real achievements of children on the ground became debased and devalued because Labor education secretaries sounded like Soviet commissars praising the tractor production figures when we know that those exams were not the rock-solid measures of achievement that children deserve.
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That's life. We all go through the tractor blades now and then. We all get bruised, and we all get cut. Sometimes the blade cuts deep. The lucky ones come through with a few scratches, a little blood, but even that isn't the most important thing. The most important thing is having someone there to scoop you up, to hold you tight, and to tell you everything is all right.
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I welcome opposing viewpoints, but I should warn you that you'll be facing off against the 2nd-place finisher at the 1981 Charleston County High-School Debate Tournament. And whatever became of that county champ who argued in favor of tractor safety modifications? Last time I checked, she didn't have her own show.
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He struck his temples with his fists and screamed: 'Haven't you ever seen a goddam DC converter? You can get them at Radio Shack for three bucks! Are you seriously trying to tell me you couldn't have made a simple DC converter when you can make your tractor fly and your typewriter run on telepathy? Are you? 'Nobody thought of it!' she screamed suddenly.
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James Davison took me out to show me where Karl is living right now and where hes going to build. Karl wasnt at home. He was out there somewhere in the woods riding on some Caterpillar or some kind of tractor. But I figured wed at least knock on the door to see if he was there. His wife answered the door. So we got to meet Kay before Karl.
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How much courage does it take to fire up your tractor and plow under a crop you spent six or seven years growing? How much courage to go on and do that after you've spent all that time finding out how to prepare the soil and when to plant and how much to water and when to reap? How much to just say, "I have to quit these peas. Peas are no good for me, I better try corn or beans.
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Unless society came out past Flat Rock Crossroads, kept on past Booker T. High School, hung two rights, a left, turned in on Milk Farm Road and found Roland plowing a tobacco field, jerked him off the tractor, warped him and set him back up there without anybody riding by and noticing, blame can't be laid on society.
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Cold weather probably played a bigger role in bringing back the hat, but sadly, the hat common to New Jersey guidos, South Carolina rednecks, Idaho potato farmers and Los Angeles gang bangers is the ubiquitous 'tractor hat,' which is derived from the cheap baseball style cap with the adjustable plastic tab.
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The things that don't happen to us that we'll never know didn't happen to us. The nonstories. The extra minute to find the briefcase that makes you late to the spot where a tractor trailer mauled another car instead of yours. The woman you didn't meet because she couldn't get a taxi to the party you had to leave early from. All of life is a series of nonstories if you look at it that way. We just don't know what they are.
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How much courage does it take to fire up your tractor and plow under a crop you spent six or seven years growing?' he asked himself. 'How much courage to go on and do that after you've spent all that time finding out how to prepare the soil and when to plant and how much to water and when to reap? How much to just say, 'I have to quit these peas, peas are no good for me, I better try corn or beans.'' 'A lot, ' he said, wiping at the corners of his eyes again. 'A damn lot, that's what I think.
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Pa never told stories like Grandpa. Or treated the barn like family. Eli knew how Grandpa's own pa had built the barn by hand, hauling bluestone for the foundation behind a stubborn ox with horns as wide as a tractor. How the smell of the plank walls was like family and how you never washed your chore coat so the animals would smell that you were family, too.
Sandra Neil Wallace
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Most of us stand poised at the edge of brilliance, haunted by the knowledge of our proximity, yet still demonstrably on the wrong side of the line, our dealings with reality undermined by a range of minor yet critical psychological flaws (a little too much optimism, an unprocessed rebelliousness, a fatal impatience or sentimentality). We are like an exquisite high-speed aircraft which for lack of a tiny part is left stranded beside the runway, rendered slower than a tractor or bicycle.
Alain de Botton
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But you can't start. Only a baby can start. You and me - why, we're all that's been. The anger of a moment, the thousand pictures, that's us. This land, this red land, is us; and the flood years and the dust years and the drought years are us. We can't start again. The bitterness we sold to the junk man - he got it all right, but we have it still. And when the owner men told us to go, that's us; and when the tractor hit the house, that's us until we're dead. To California or any place - every one a drum major leading a parade of hurts, marching with our bitterness. And some day - the armies of bitterness will all be going the same way. And they'll all walk together, and there'll be a dead terror from it.
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For the rest of history, for most of us, our bright promise will always fall short of being actualised; it will never earn us bountiful sums of money or beget exemplary objects or organisations... Most of us stand poised at the edge of brilliance, haunted by the knowledge of our proximity, yet still demonstrably on the wrong side of the line, our dealings with reality undermined by a range of minor yet critical psychological flaws (a little too much optimism, an unprocessed rebelliousness, a fatal impatience or sentimentality). We are like an exquisite high-speed aircraft which for lack of a tiny part is left stranded beside the runway, rendered slower than a tractor or a bicycle.
Alain de Botton
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He laughs again. 'You're different, Caymen.' 'Different than what?' 'Than any other girl I've met.' Considering most of the girls he'd met probably had fifty times as much money as I did, that wasn't a hard feat to accomplish. Thinking about that makes my eyes sting. 'It's refreshing. You make me feel normal.' 'Huh. I better work on that because you're far from normal.' He smiles and pushes my shoulder playfully. My heart slams into my ribs. 'Caymen.' I take another handful of dirt and smash it against his neck then try to make a quick escape. He grabs me from behind, and I see his hand, full of dirt, coming toward my face when the warning beeps of the tractor start up. 'Saved by the gravediggers, ' he says.
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Music is crucial. Beyond no way can I overstress this fact. Let's say you're southbound on the interstate, cruising alone in the middle lane, listening to AM radio. Up alongside comes a tractor trailer of logs or concrete pipe, a tie-down strap breaks, and the load dumps on top of your little sheetmetal ride. Crushed under a world of concrete, you're sandwiched like so much meat salad between layers of steel and glass. In that last, fast flutter of your eyelids, you looking down that long tunnel toward the bright God Light and your dead grandma walking up to hug you-do you want to be hearing another radio commercial for a mega, clearance, closeout, blow-out liquidation car-stereo sale?
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This is the arena in which a spiritualized disobedience means most. It doesn't mean a second New Deal, another massive bureaucratic attack on our problems. It doesn't mean taking to the streets, throwing bricks through the window at the Bank of America, or driving a tractor through the local McDonald's. It means living differently. It means taking responsibility for the character of the human world. That's a real confrontation with the problem of value. In short, refusal of the present is a return to what Thoreau and Ruskin called "human fundamentals, valuable things, " and it is a movement into the future. This movement into the future is also a powerful expression of that most human spiritual emotion, Hope. p.124
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Playing pool with Korean officials one evening in the Koryo Hotel, which has become the nightspot for foreign businessmen and an increasing number of diplomats (to say nothing of the burgeoning number of spies and journalists traveling under second identities), I was handed that day's edition of the Pyongyang Times. At first glance it seemed too laughable for words: endless pictures of the 'Dear Leader'-Little Boy's exalted title-as he was garlanded by adoring schoolchildren and heroic tractor drivers. Yet even in these turgid pages there were nuggets: a telegram congratulating the winner of the Serbian elections; a candid reference to the 'hardship period' through which the country had been passing; an assurance that a certain nuclear power plant would be closed as part of a deal with Washington. Tiny cracks, to be sure. But a complete and rigid edifice cannot afford fissures, however small. There appear to be no hookers, as yet, in Pyongyang. Yet if casinos come, can working girls be far behind? One perhaps ought not to wish for hookers, but there are circumstances when corruption is the only hope.
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