Warning: Pictures are graphic and an animal lost its life in the process.
I wasn’t there. When you read this, you will be able to figure out why. (Also, I wasn’t invited.) And special acknowledgements to Brother Number One for the photos, and Brothers One and Four as primary resources / eyewitnesses.
It happened like this…Brother One and I came up to the farm in Wisconsin from the south for a weekend gathering. Brother Four, the farmer, had been trying to get a renegade steer butchered since September. (See blogs titled Love Me Tender and Chesseburger, cheeseburger, cheeseburger.)
I will fill readers in on some background information in case you might have missed the blogs cited above. Sister One and Brother Four raise Scottish Highlanders, then sell the grass-fed beef. Last fall, on Butchering Day, one of the steers, aka Renegade Steer, leaped the fence, escaped and went rogue for six weeks in a two square mile area from my sister’s place. He clearly had a screw loose with a propensity for endangering people. During that time, the folks combed fence lines on foot and neighbors searched on horseback to no avail, although there were a few reported sightings.
Finally RS turned up at a cattle farm, where the owner of which disallowed the butchering to take place on his property. Eventually, after several months in residence, RS broke through his barn wall twice and charged said owner knocking him over. He relented. Also, he was promised a goodly amount of the beef, gratis.
Now comes the day long awaited for by the family, just because the whole episode drug out for nearly six months…RS’s last living day on earth. The boys met the sharpshooter and butcher. The RS was clearly ID’d, as he was the only one of his breed present. Brother Two, farrier and sharpshooter himself, urged the gunman to “shoot, shoot.” He was a little eager, in my opinion. Nevertheless, the aim was swift and true. RS was down, throat slit (sorry), and properly declared dead by Brother One, the doctor.
The steer was drug away a short distance with a skid loader, hoisted with a crane, skinned, gutted, and cut up. All this in the cold windy gloom of the day, and I missed the whole event. I am pretty grateful, frankly. I got a little sickish feeling when I asked for details this morning. All adventures aren’t equal.
This is what happens on the farm. This is where hamburger, steak and pot roast come from, and had I been present, I probably would have become a vegetarian. In a little while, we will all gather again in the folks’ kitchen and eat ham and scalloped potatoes. I’m glad tonight’s meat entree isn’t beef