Since I had very little exposure to agriculture before meeting farmer-husband, my initial response to his profession was, “COOL! A farmer!” And to this day, my response is the same, but for totally different reasons.
At first, farming seemed nostalgic to me, as if I were stepping back in time. I thought farmers were simple people who lived life at a leisurely pace while chewing on a piece of wheat. Boy, was I wrong!
Since the beginning of time, mankind has had to work the ground and labor and toil and sweat in order to produce enough food and fiber from which to survive. It has only been in the last 100 years that farming in America has lost its position as the number one industry. We are no longer a 3rd world country- thanks to advances in technology and in the areas of pesticides and fertilizers. The addition of these chemicals to modern agricultural practices allowed people to move away from their farms and live in the city, advance their education, and work in offices, factories, schools, and hospitals. Farmers were suddenly able to not only provide more for their families, but also for their communities and then their country, and now the world. The goal of farmers was no longer their family’s survival, but provision for others. Conventional American farmers today continue to strive to provide a safe, affordable and abundant food and fiber supply to our country and to the world. Anyone who has lived or worked on a farm, or ever known a farmer can attest to the hard work, dedication, and sometimes blind faith that it requires to produce a viable crop.
More and more I am noticing how popular the words “farm”, “plantation”, and “country” are becoming. I did a short search online just recently for blogs containing the word “farm” in the title. I was looking for other gals like myself, who blog about farm life, or who are married to farmers, or who believe in promoting American agriculture as I do. I found plenty of blogs that have “farm” in the title…but very few that were about a real farm. I realized then that the word “farm” conjures up a warm fuzzy feeling for a lot of people, and therefore they name their house on five acres a “farm.” They think they live on a “farm” when really they just enjoy gardening and have a few yard chickens. They have taken a word that should be synonymous with hard-working men and women who provide the food and fiber for our country and used it to mean a quaint little grassy knoll owned by a city-slicker who has never actually stepped foot on a working farm.
I wonder how easy it would be to get “farm” copyrighted?
So now when I tell people I live on a farm, or that my husband is a farmer, it takes a few minutes of conversation for people to realize that I actually mean a REAL FARM--the kind that grows crops on a large scale; the kind that has the really big tractors; the kind that we all rely on to survive.
Pretty cool, huh?