John Phipps: Waiting to Plant? 5 Suggestions to Help Pass the Time

07:00AM May 13, 2019
Soggy Fields
Are you waiting to plant? John Phipps has 5 tips to help pass the time.
( Farm Journal )

We are now pushing toward our latest start ever for planting. Our record was May 21, so I hope we don’t break it. Like many of you we have been ready to some degree since late March, and that’s a lot of time to fill in. After all you can only drive by fields for a few hours each day. So, for what it’s worth, here are some ideas that I use when trying to pretend I’m cool despite fixating on getting started.

  1. Re-read a favorite book. Nothing too taxing, but don’t waste the effort trying to stay into a new story, because your brain probably won’t be able to concentrate for long. In fact, one of the books I’m reading I think I sorta read waiting out a late harvest, and it’s like new to me.
  2. Fix or improve some little irritation that you’ve been putting off about for years. For example, I finally repaired a stained spot above the shower in one bathroom. It was a messy job putting that popcorn stuff on the ceiling so between getting ready, actually splattering it on, and cleaning up the fallout, I killed several hours. And I had to make 2-3 trips to box stores, all of which are near some of my favorite restaurants, if you get my drift.
  3. Clean up the shop. This will shock many of you but when I shoot video with the shop in the background, I more or less bulldoze the piles of tools and scraps just outside the edge of the picture, so a few of you think I’m mildly organized. The truth is somewhat different. During the past few rainy days, I’ve put a lot of tools away belatedly unlike you true craftsmen who do so promptly after use. I also finally built a better table for my drill press, a job which required even more visits to the home improvement centers and nearby establishments. I even managed to fill a couple of dumpsters with stuff from our farm shop, finding over 25 supposedly lost tools in the process.
  4. Stay off social media. Seriously. I find avoiding Twitter and Facebook during times of stress may not lower my anxiety level, but it stops adding to the load.
  5. Finally, walk. Walking does something to our minds, allowing them to free wheel and think new thoughts. The tricky part is capturing those inspirations before some a shiny object pushes it from your consciousness. Walking is also rumored to be a healthy thing to do, so you can feel smug about that as a bonus.

I’m sure you have equally effective ways to appear busy and useful while checking the radar every 20 minutes. And I hope your search for ways to kill time becomes unnecessary soon. Just don’t let the time kill you before then.

John's World 05/11/19
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