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Floyd’s Flack and Friction

GAYS MILLS - It was my privilege to teach high school agriculture for four years in California and 29 years in Wisconsin, (three years in Brillion and 26 years at North Crawford). It was a career that I loved and I felt lucky to work in the field of agricultural with young people. The students seemed to keep getting younger, as I got older, and that kept me young at heart.

Here in Wisconsin, the head of the Ag Education Department at the Department of Public Instruction was a man named Floyd Doering. Floyd was a former ag teacher himself and was a very capable leader and inspiration to the 450-or-so ag teachers under his supervision.

The ag teachers didn’t see Floyd, or each other, very often during the year. Conventions, workshops, and judging contests were always great occasions where we could reconnect, share notes and concerns with each other. Other than that, we were pretty much on our own.

But Floyd kept in contact with us every month by way of a newsletter he put out called Floyd’s Flack and Friction. His newsletter usually got read the day it arrived in the mail.  It was newsy, informative, inspirational at times and humorous. In it we found out about retirements, job openings, achievements of our fellow teachers, births, deaths, new rules and regulations that affected us, and some of Floyd’s reflections on life and education.

Floyd always included stories and humorous happenings from his many years in education. He also had a section called tidbits that was a big hit. I include some of them here for your enjoyment.

Isn’t it sad that in America we use our credit cards more than we use our library cards?

At the wedding ceremony the priest said to the groom: “It’s I do…not whatever!”

Sometimes the road less traveled is less traveled for a reason.

Spring is when you feel like whistling, even with a shoe full of slush.

Ordered some clam chowder the other day. Asked the waitress if it was fresh. She said, “You bet, we just opened the can this morning.”

There are two classes of travel - first class and with children.

I happen to believe the only difference between rummage sales and trash pick-up is how close to the road the stuff is placed.

I don’t like Barbara Walters very much, but I do agree with one statement she made. “I have never met anyone who was funny and stupid.”

A pessimist’s blood type is always B-Negative.

May God grant me to forget the people I never liked, the good fortune to run into the ones I do like, and the eyesight to know the difference.

Marriage is the only union that can’t be organized. Both sides think they are management.

A guy took his daughter shopping. She said she wanted some ‘Guess Jeans.’ He saw the price and said  “Guess again.”

Floyd’s newsletter did a lot to make a far flung group of agriculture teachers feel like members of a team.