Posts Tagged ‘Monkeys’

There Is Stuff To Be Thankful For And Stuff To Loathe

This is the time of year when people find reasons to list what they are thankful for.

I’ve never been much for doing what everyone does. And I’m not real big on lists either. The creative types and Perez Hiltons of the world are apt to take the opportunity to list what they aren’t thankful for. Some of them don’t seem to be thankful for much of anything.

In further evolution of the species, a lot of people seem to be thankful for is the ability to miss the annual family show down. The option is to stand in line at Wal-mart all day Thursday for the Black Friday deals.

I’ve got something left over in my brain from Mad Magazine or something like that wherein I often think of things as Hot and Not . You know, kind of an ongoing brew of what’s really happening and what is to dislike.

Here it is in list form, because this blog won’t Vulcan Mind Meld as of yet:


  1. Apple Products. You can’t deny the innovation.
  2. Foster The People. Great band, great guys, including my friend Sean Cimino on guitar.
  3. Mini Cooper. If there’s ever a car for the future, the Mini has made a statement.
  4. Phosphites. Nothing has made more of a difference in more spray programs.
  5. Organic Fertilizers. Never a better time for choices and cost-effectiveness.

Not So Hot:

  1. Professional Sports. Yes, you all don’t make enough money—so stop playing and go work in the chosen profession of your college major.
  2. The Irrigation Industry. Control Systems=FAIL. (see #1 above for an option). Cost=FAIL (if we are ever gonna build golf again it has to be different).
  3. Hybrid Cars. Sorry Prius and Voltheads, but #3 above and the TDI and small turbo engines from VW, BMW and Ford are winners without 900 pounds of battery cells to worry about.
  4. General Managers. That’s right, ask for your Super to save the club another hundred grand.
  5. Trade Shows. I’ve never really understood them, but even the big ones are on life suppport. Ever meet a vendor that likes a good trade show?

I’m pretty sure that neither one of those lists covers it. But it is a fun exercise to put your mind around. For most people the cold list is much easier than the hot list.

Personally, I have a lot to be thankful for and a lot that needs to change. Isn’t that always the case? Most of all, I’m thankful for the friends and clients that I’m close with. Those people who have embraced Turfheadism, not as a disease to be hidden from our “non Green” friends and unturfheadlike families are unique and wonderful. Who couldn’t be thankful for them and those like them (us)?

Video: View From The Road: 4/8/2011

Purpose. Pre. During. Post.

Purpose. Pre. During. Post.

The entire subject of greens aerification is fraught with the very same issues that often make monkeys fly out of people’s butts. Go ahead, read it again. Keep trying. It will make sense eventually. Or not.

Over the last couple weeks, I’ve had some calls to come and look at greens that just didn’t come through fall aerification the way they were expected to. There are some common denominators that show when we do the diagnosis. If you are dealing with this, it might help to go through the process and questions that I use to try to figure things out.

One. Purpose. Why are you doing this? Hint, if you dare to answer this question with, “Because we always do it”, then you might need to take a swim in the wet well. Please. Think hard about why you are punching holes and how you are doing it. In my mind, thatch removal, compaction removal and air exchange are three different things, requiring three different techniques. A decent solid review of methods is always necessary. Might be good to figure out why you are doing the operation and use the correct method.

Two. Pre. What have you done to prepare the surface prior to the event? I remember clearly just waiting for that magic Monday when I could finally put the tines in the ground, the greens telling me clearly (in the night, while I wasn’t sleeping) that they had nothing left to give. Just a like a patient that goes under the knife in a weak state and dies on the table, so too can be a green that gets double deep-tined, double deep-verticut and buried in topdressing. Buy the funeral flowers. Instead, because you and the guys in the Pro Shop all know the date of the big event by heart, why not make some moves to increase turfgrass health, pre-invasion? It’s a sad axiom, but your greens better be the best they can be just before you tear them up. Yes, it adds to the “you are just doing this to piss us off” crowd’s argument. Oh well.

Three. During. Have you given yourself and your grass every advantage during the operation? This might be a harder area if you haven’t really answered question number 1. Assuming you have, then this area covers making sure that you have thought through all the possible things that could happen. Are you yourself rested? Have you communicated with your crew that some hard work is coming that won’t last forever?  Can you employ any methods or other options that will make it easier on your greens? Always having a “plan B” is key to making it through any event. This one included.

Four. Post. What are you doing for your greens post-invasion? Is there anything you can spray to send plants running sideways? Can you lay off the HOC for a bit and just let them grow. Did you really have to double cut with the sand reels for 5 days straight, those reels dull enough to not to cut hard boiled eggs? What do your soil tests tell you that could be done to help energy and root development? From my perspective, I see people get just one day past the big job and forget that they sent their children into major shock. Some gentle therapy might be in order.

Purpose. Pre. During. Post. — A simple planning mantra for making a necessary thing go better. And then monkeys won’t have to fly out your butt. A good thing.