Oct 27, 2009

Economic Hard Times: Two Dozen Coyotes Queue Up In Cold, Pre-Dawn Darkness For Single, Solitary Sheepdog Job

In a heartbreaking testimony on the sorry state of the economy in the Palouse, a scene reminiscent of the "Great Depression' unfolded itself this weekend when an extremely rare job opening was posted on a local telephone pole (just about knee high!) at the corner of 7th and Main in Lamont. "Well, it is enough to break your heart!" said 'Skeeter' Snodgrass, 53, one of only two sheep farmers in the Lamont area (the other one is an extremely astute, smart and savvy businessman and thus has a lower employee turnover rate so has had no need to advertise for replacement personnel). "You know, this is a free country with open employment laws, so if my old sheepdog wanted to go down to the New Mexico/Arizona border to ply his trade, there ain't a darn thing I can do about it!" said Snodgrass. "The 'old boy' was getting up in years anyway, and that warmer weather down there can only help that onset of arthritis that has been plaguing him for the last several years. Anyway! So, after the wife baked him a cake and we said our 'good-byes', it finally dawned on me that it ain't good business to be a sheep farmer and not have a dadburn sheepdog, so I had the wife work her magic on the computer and printed up a single flyer. I half expected one or two half-hearted replies - you know - some Border Collie with a drinking problem or some lab mix trying to get a new start in life after never learning that whole "go get the duck in the freezing water' thing - so you could have knocked me over with a feather when I went out that morning and saw a line snaking all the way past the barn and almost down to Highway 23!!! And they were all willing to just "work for food!' I knew right then that this whole darn country is in a world of hurt. Heck, we had to slaughter 2 ewes and a ram after the wife made it plain that it would be 'bad manners' to let 'our guests' go hungry when they came all this way just to try for the job. It is just a shame that we can only hire one of the poor wretches" said the remorseful, soon-to-be ex-sheep farmer.

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