The Engineer. He has this highfalutin, high-tech corporate sales job that often requires me to scrape the manure from under my nails and gussy myself up for a fancy dinner out. I like the dinners. Don’t get me wrong. A five-star restaurant is always a good thing in my book. I particularly like it when I’m not the one paying for it. The only part that bothers me is when the small talk attention turns to me and someone asks, “So what do YOU do?”
I used to just say, “I homeschool my son.” But now that he has gone back to school I never quite know how to answer that. I’ve often replied, “I’m a hobby farmer.”
Generally that has been followed by a 30 second hesitation on their part as they try to process what I just said. Then there is, of course, the obligatory explanation of just what that means, “I raise sheep, alpacas, goats and llamas.”
Again, a pause while that little tidbit is digested. Then they always ask, “And what exactly do you do with them?”
Here is where the eyebrows start to inch towards the tops of their heads. When I tell them that I shear them by hand and process the wool, I can tell they are mentally filing me under the hippie weirdo category in their business card files. If not immediately then certainly once they figure out there is no real cash flow being generated yet.
So I am trying to resolve the “What do You do?” question. Instead of “hobby farmer” I need to actually sell something to lose that “hobby” part of the title. You’ll be noticing a few changes around here. A cohesive look and feel to the old blog and facebook page, a new Etsy shop and whatnot. A general attempt at getting my act together and becoming a “real” farmer.
It is either that or answer the question with stuff I make up like, “I’m an excrement expatiation engineer.”
I wonder how long it would take them to process that?