Wednesday, September 3, 2008

A Word About My Mercantile Endeavours

My good friend Mr. Gale has persuaded me that my store front needs to expand it's line of merchandise in order to maximize assistance to the donkeys at the PrimRose Sanctuary and to make more people aware of just what a fine species we are . To that end, the woman and I examined the options and I'm sorry to say we were at odds over what should be added.

I pondered deeply and opted for some small, tasteful hasty notes. She wanted things like wall tiles and calendars. Of course, she has the opposable thumbs and simply added all sorts of bizarre things that I've never heard of before. Mousepad? I say let the mice get their own pads. She has stocked my virtual store with various objects featuring Jack and self emblazoned on the front. Jack is quite pleased with the whole idea but honestly, he's not that discriminating when it comes to objets d'art.

I drew the line at have my portrait adorning anything in the "intimate apparel" category. I refused to even glance at the items but assume they include whale bone corsets and woolen bloomers. The woman assures me there is far less material used than I imagine. I shudder to think.

I am a private and introspective donkey and am somewhat shaken at finding myself the head of this merchandising empire. The woman says it's not an empire, more of a lemondade stand, but I suspect I will soon know the burden of piloting a corporate juggernaut.

So far we have sent the donkeys some bandages and wormers and the woman has just bought them more supplies on one of her tack forays across the border. I suppose I must bear up under the burden of being a public figure. I've sent a message to Queen Elizabeth II, asking how she deals with the situation. I'll let you know what she says.


billie said...

Sheaffer, I love the new photo. How wonderful that you now have a new comrade in potato field maneuvers!

I have just returned from your storefront, and had to restrain myself from ordering one of everything. In fact, I had to bookmark it and will return in a few weeks to do some Christmas shopping!

Right now we are dealing with a very upsetting situation - Rafer Johnson broke his leg (left rear, at the hock) on Sunday. He is on stall confinement and not a very happy donkey right now, in spite of our efforts to keep him entertained.

We have opted to do casting here at our farm rather than a 3-week trip to the vet school for an intensive surgery that would have the same end result.

If you have any advice for keeping a young, athletic donkey entertained for what will be about SIX MONTHS we would be happy to hear it.

He gets the first of 3 casts put on tomorrow - right now he is in a bandage/rig with supports that resembles a stove pipe and a peg leg. I think he is intrigued with the thing, but wishes it were not attached to his very own leg.

Ginger (Baker not Rogers) said...

Donkey emergency!
Billie - I am so sorry to hear about Rafer Johnson. Even Fred is so sorry. We can't imagine how an athletic young donkey like Rafer could break a leg? Did this have something to do with a gate?

For solace, we recommend chewable items such as cedar posts, tree branches - particularly spruce if you have it in your neighborhood. And of course dates. Yes, Mr. Gale, JUST one a day.

We ourselves had a terrifying evening yesterday as we were summarily tossed into our stall while humans clumped overhead with hundreds of bales of hay. The noise and vibration were very upsetting. We have filed a complaint with the United Nations and will report back soon.

billie said...

Ginger and Fred, we don't exactly know. It happened between 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. so the window of time was fairly narrow. It is broken on the inside of the hock joint, which makes it even more mysterious, and there was not one hair out of place - no wound or anything, just minor swelling around the hock on the inside.

I love the idea of something to chew on and we can accommodate that very easily from our own forest!

I am happy to say that while he had a rough day yesterday, today is much better. He was very much his old self, and I hope we have many more days like this as he heals.

I think maybe he needs some donkey posters for his stall - surely that will help! :) And I know JUST where to get some.

Ginger (Baker not Rogers) said...

Billie - the fat lady had a lovely warmblood filly, Tizzy, that severed her tendon in an accident and she was on stall rest for at least 6 weeks. She did just fine and jumped out of the paddock three months later.

Remember to look after the right leg, which will be taking more weight than usual. The vet may recommend wrapping it. Fred and I recommend excessive snuggling and tasty hay in a BIG stall. One option for low-calorie chewing fun is straw - we rather like the crunch.

ponymaid said...

billie, we both felt quite faint when we read your comment. So glad to know the boy is doing well. What a mysterious accident - is young Redford still coming?

For diversion I suggest a few things I had to play with as a sprog. Giant rubber Kong thingumee stuffed with an apple or other squooshy treat. Bowling pins - the plastic kind human offspring use. Rubber duck - my favourite by a mile. A pair of old work socks tied together in a knot. Pieces of cardboard to shred. And as Ginger said, many types of branches and logs, some with bark that can be peeled. Old brooms are always a welcome diversion.

For stall-side reading I suggest "Brighty of the Grand Canyon" or anything by Chaucer.

Poor lad, we all send our best - I think his rate of recovery may surprise everyone.Here's hoping.

Dougie Donk said...

Rafer, please accept millions of healing vibes from Scotland.

I have consulted the idiot Thoroughbred, who forfeited his racing career after badly damaging his tendon. He tells me that his 12 weeks confined to his room was made bearable by something called a "boredom breaker" - tasty lick-y things that rotate away from you. Woman says the "weblink" is

He also says that a turnip ("Swede" ?) hung from the ceiling was rather entertaining, as was a sort've football with a handle, which he could throw around & try to hit people with. The link for this is

Sheaffer - your foray into trade is most entrepreneurial & impressive. Although the woman already supports poor donkeys here in the UK, I will instruct her to extend further aid to the new world.

billie said...

Thanks to everyone for all the lovely ideas. Right now Rafer has a ball made of bunches of bits of grains and coated with sticky molasses and peppermint. I keep it in a plastic tub due to ants and flies, but open it many times a day and he has fun licking.

He also has a mini salt lick, a jolly ball, and of course his hay and water. I put a nice long branch with bark in there a few hours ago, and he has many visitors all through the day and evening. His herd can visit him over his back door, and his best companion Salina is right beside him and able to lean right into the stall to visit. Once he gets the cast and the leg heals a bit more, we can make him a mini-paddock off the back of his stall, and we can use a portable mini-paddock so he can graze in the barnyard with Salina.

These ideas for the stall time are perfect. I've been taking the grooming kit in a few times a day and letting him pick what he wants me to use. He has a few favorites and it's fun to see him pick.

Buddy said...

OH MY - a broken leg - scary - very scary - I do hope the little dude will heal quickly. I'm bored all the time so I have nothing to add to everyone else's ideas for entertainment.

Sending horsie love and prayers.

robert5721 said...

stuff like that can happen with a bad step on a rock or something twisting things in nasty and awful for you....are you having lots of pain when you put weight on that leg? anti inflammatory medicine for the first few days can help that, but yer tummy might not want to over do that one. Just take care of the GOOD leg like Ginger advised....remember Barbaro? his main trouble was in the GOOD leg opposing the broke one..Hopefully good hay and sticky balls (I do not advise hanging them from the cielieng like you are supposed to, cause that makes a lot of work for your legs chasing it about the stall) and logs with bark on them and LOTS OF VISITORS AND HUGS GALORE can keep you a youngun like you will heal up faster than those doc guys think!! wishing you the best from all the donkeys here at olde towne farm...
Now I have to go look at Mr Sheaffer and Mr Jacks new IS
Mr Gale

robert5721 said...

did you and Mr Jack get to inspect the big green potato machine? What is YOUR opinion of it's magnificence up close? What did Mr Jack have to say about it?
Please advise....LOL..
Mr Gale

billie said...

Cast is on, Redford is staying put at his home with his herd of 15 donkeys (!) until Rafer can get some convalescing done, and we are riding out the hurricane - but most importantly, Rafer is doing very well. Thank you all for the great ideas and good thoughts.

I went and bought some Sheaffer stuff yesterday and just got emailed that it is on its way! Yay! Now I want a Jack mug - coming soon???

robert5721 said...

Sheaffer and Rafer,
just got some cool stuff to check out, and then christmas will come later (after the money pile increases) of those nice sheaffer tile thingies might taste good to Rafer, or at least keep him company....i got a poster and a box of cards and , er, excuse me, a MOUSEPAD THING....I will report to you sheaffer on it's use and suitability....your woman thing might have a great idea there....the one i use now looks like a grease slick,,,,LOL....
Mr Gale

ponymaid said...

billie, I hope young Rafer is bearing up under the strain of confinement. Doc thinks he's lying in a bed on his back with his leg in plaster and suspended from the ceiling with levers and pulleys. Doc has watched too many of those cartoon presentations.

Thank you billie and Mr.Gale for your support of my merchandising attempts on behalf of the PrimRose Donkeys. I'm still rather bowled over by my new role but am trying to behave more like an entrepreneur and less like a donkey philosopher. I refuse to make any infomercials, however.

We've lost track of the harvester - though it hardly seems possible - there are still some potatoes in our field so we have hopes of a photo-op when it reappears. I would like one of my own but am told they are quite costly - probably even more than a hundred dollars.

robert5721 said...

look at it this way,
1000 mousepads = one harvester
sounds kinda nice. huh? OR, it could be alot of happy Donkeys at the rescue....THAT is even BETTER, huh? DO NOT LOSE THE PHILOSOPHER PART OF THINGS!! THAT is why we all love you so much....:-D
Mr Gale

billie said...

Sheaffer, the idea of levers and pulleys made me think about those machines where you set one thing in motion and it carries on all on its own through a series of machinations.

Something like that would keep Rafer intrigued for hours.

He is able now to go outside his stall for little bits of grazing time - he wisely self-regulates and stays in a small area. I think getting some nice grass each day is good for him, and his spirits really rise when you open the stall door and invite him to walk out.

I know infomercials are not your style, but I think you might be capable of bringing that whole medium to a new level of taste and class.