What can we reason but from what we know? -Alexander Pope

Articles written by Gary Hodgson


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  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Jun 13, 2024

    Normally I don’t write about a specific person unless they are dead. There are two reasons for this. One, dead people can’t sue you if they don’t like what you say. Two, I usually write those pieces as tributes to them after their death. A close friend and traveling partner, Fred Roselle and another cowboy I only met a couple of times, Chris Ledoux, were men I wrote about with the deepest respect. Today, I’m going to break my long standing rule and write about a man who is still very much am...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Jun 6, 2024

    Sue quite often sends me off to town on an errand. It may be to pick up the mail, take mail to the post office or, as I often suspect, to just get me out of the house. Prior to every trip she issues these directions to me, “Try not to get into too much trouble” Honestly, I hardly ever get into any type of trouble. I do, however, encounter a few “memorable” situations, such as my most recent. This morning she called me into her office to tell me she needed me to go to the store and buy her a lemo...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|May 23, 2024

    A popular song starts with the works “what a difference a day makes.” It must have been written by someone living in Morgan County! The other day I was excited over light snow falling! Snow makes water and water makes grass, grass makes me and the cows, happy! The previous day was hot and so dry that son David and I discussed whether we should be running our irrigation well on the drying hay field. Luckily, we decided not to. Today, after that very wet snow, the last thing we need is more wat...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|May 16, 2024

    You’ve heard it said of someone who is really good at their job, “They are a natural.” These lucky folks just seem to have been born with all the talent necessary to be successful in their chosen field. Even though they might work at what they do just as hard as others, for these “naturals” things just seem to come out better. Then there are the rest of us. While some seem to be born with the proverbial silver spoon in their mouth, talent-wise, there are those of us whose spoon was plastic....

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|May 9, 2024

    I am constantly amazed by animals. Their superior intelligence is a constant wonder to me. I keep trying to figure out just where we humans went wrong. We probably started out as smart as other creatures. Somewhere along the way our group began to fall behind. Recently I made a startling discovery that reminded me of this. The day began like most late spring, early summer days. I awoke about daylight, consumed enough coffee to get my heart pumping, pulled on my boots and headed outdoors. After...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|May 2, 2024

    If today’s title seems a bit indecisive, trust me, you got it right! The seasons have been a little hard to identify here on the Hodgson Ranch. The year, like everyone else’s began with January, followed by February, both supposed to be identified by cold days. We had 50 to 70 degree days instead. Guess we just got our months mixed up. Next came March, usually the spring door opener. This year it featured a mixture of some freezing nights and 70 degree days. Must not be spring after all, I tho...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Apr 24, 2024

    You can take the boy out of the country but ... you can’t teach him how to drive in the big city. It seemed like a simple task. All I had to do was attend a meeting in lower downtown Denver. LoDo, they call the area. Before this project was over, I’d re-named it. Over the phone the directions seemed easy enough. I-25 south to Speer, Speer to 15th, left on 15th, etc, etc. It couldn’t be any harder than directions in our town. You know, left at the grain elevator, go down the street to where...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Apr 18, 2024

    When my wife moved to Colorado years ago from extreme Southeastern Kansas, she remembers expecting everyone to be packing a six shooter, riding horses and living in the Wild West she’d always heard about. Some new arrivals, I’m told, still expect a little less civilization than they find. If they look hard enough, though, they can still find many of us carrying on the traditions of our Western heritage. I’m here to tell you, however, it is darn hard to be a cowboy in Colorado. Cattlemen, farme...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Apr 4, 2024

    Several years ago, when I was given the opportunity to write a few columns for a big city newspaper, I was informed by the editorial board this would probably not lead to a career writing for them. No commitment beyond a few weeks. No job security. I respected them for being so up front about our employment agreement. Others should be so honest. Were you, a family member or friend until recently employed by an airline? How about an up and coming dot com or major corporation? I’ve never been r...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Mar 28, 2024

    If you live in the country you probably share a bond with everyone else who lives outside city limit signs. This common denominator is the lowly mailbox. Since prehistoric times (which means longer than I can remember) the mailbox has been our link with the outside world. Unlike our city friends, rural mailboxes have character. In town, a mailbox may be just a slot in the front door or a metal box on the front porch. Country mailboxes have character. Mailboxes are a sentry assigned to a lonely...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Mar 21, 2024

    Of all the “doms” out there, kingdom, freedom, maximum, on and on, boredom is the one kicking my rear right now! It is 69 degrees right now, frozen stock tanks are off the list as are shutting down the lawn sprinklers and plugging in the big John Deere so it will start when the time comes to feed the cows. The cows, who by the way have so much winter grass to graze down, probably won’t need fed until mid-July! Fortunately, my “fall back” activity is writing these “Under The Wire” columns, an act...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Mar 13, 2024

    There are places in the world where time stands still. These are little-known spots where nothing changes and progress seems to have skipped over it. Thank heaven for those places. This weighty observation came as a result of opening up a newspaper the other morning. There in black and white was a story and pictures about my old stomping grounds, LaPorte. LaPorte is a wide spot in the road on Highway 287 between Fort Collins and Laramie, Wyo. I hope no one takes offense at the description. It...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Mar 7, 2024

    It’s insomnia time on the Hodgson Ranch and many others, too. Sleep is long forgotten, taken out of our daily routines. What do we do with all this “spare time.” You may ask? Simple answer. We calve cows. If that sounds like a simple task, here are a few facts. A cow has a roughly nine month gestation period. During those 270 days, the tiny embryo is growing and mama cow is planning how to give birth at the most inconvenient time. Her goal is to schedule the big day as close as possible to mi...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Feb 29, 2024

    Last week, I wrote an “Under The Wire” about the month of January. I had never thought about doing that before until it came to life in my imagination as a pretty cool month. It starts every fresh new year, generates a lot of parties dedicated to celebrating the new year and generates lots of new calendars from just about everybody we do business with. Many sport pictures from barns to birds and everything in between, making for some fun viewing. When the column hit Sue’s desk, her first obser...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Feb 22, 2024

    Walmart got me bucked off a horse a while back. I’m mad at them. Don’t tell me about lowest prices or biggest whatever. I’m bruised, scrapped and I hurt all over. It’s all Walmart’s fault. Let me begin by saying I have never been a fan of any of those big, discount stores. Notice there is a comma separating the words big and discount. The stores are big, they offer some discounts, but seldom are these big discount (no comma) outfits. Sue and I are Mom and Pop business fans. We used to call ourse...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Feb 15, 2024

    Over the years, I have written about various Holidays that we all celebrate in one way or another. Christmas, New Year's Day, Thanksgiving, all are special but none more so than Valentine's Day. The one day a year devoted to Love. A while back I did devote an “Under The Wire” to this special day. Recently, however, a dark side to this holiday has appeared. Valentine's Day has always required us husbands to visit stores we would never go into any other time to shop for items we might never buy...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Feb 8, 2024

    I am not a big “Banquet Goer," however one banquet my family attends is the Brush Area Chamber of Commerce Ag Appreciation dinner. It is the one get-together that draws together just about every rancher and farmer in the entire area. They always put together an interesting program, vying for the attention with one thing in common with everyone else in attendance. Sometimes they bring entertainment in with guest speakers or a comedian or other forms of information. They accomplish their goal nice...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Feb 1, 2024

    It has been said that after two people have been married a long time, they begin to look alike. I have seen examples of this a few times. I also will proclaim no amount of years will ever make my beautiful, five foot blonde wife look like me. Thank God for that. It is more common for two long time marrieds to begin thinking alike. I present my sister and brother-in-law as prime examples. Brother-in-law Ken has been a long-time supply source of potential column ideas. Most, I don’t use. He h...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Jan 18, 2024

    This story will sound like it is going to be sad. Don’t worry. It is just the opposite. A few years ago Christmas Eve, my mother passed away. She had lived a long, happy and challenging life. A few days from her 97th birthday, she had emptied her bucket list. In fact probably several buckets, maybe even a barrel or two. Her life was happy because she and my father were married 67 years before he passed on. Another big source of her happiness was my little sister, Pam. Adding to her source of g...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Jan 11, 2024

    Happy New Year! No, I’m not late getting this column to the editor, nor am I celebrating the Chinese New Year, which, by the way falls on Jan. 22 this year. Not that I would mind joining in the festive event. I don’t know if you’ve noticed before but it’s hard to keep track of. Last year it was Feb. 1, the year before Feb. 12, the previous one, Jan. 25. I’m sure these are pre-determined dates but to a guy who can’t remember his wife’s birthday, keeping up with a floating holiday is too much t...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Dec 21, 2023

    The Christmas season is upon us. It’s a wonderful time of the year. Brightly lit Christmas trees surrounded by presents wrapped in colorful paper and bows join traditional school programs and church services honoring the reason for the season. Each family has their own special traditions that mark their Holiday Season. The Hodgson family has their own unique way of celebrating the upcoming season of gift giving. You can tell Christmas is just around the corner. Everyone in the family begins t...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Dec 14, 2023

    This story will sound like it is going to be sad. Don’t worry. It is just the opposite. A few years ago Christmas Eve, my mother passed away. She had lived a long, happy and challenging life. A few days from her 97th birthday, she had emptied her bucket list. In fact probably several buckets, maybe even a barrel or two. Her life was happy because she and my father were married 67 years before he passed on. Another big source of her happiness was my little sister, Pam. Adding to her source of g...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Dec 7, 2023

    I must share a secret with you. When Christmas season rolls around I feel, well, to be honest I feel kind of smug. Superior even. To be downright honest I think my Christmas is probably better than most. Christmas is a time full of traditions rooted in past life on the ranch, in the country, surrounded by nature. “Over the river and through the woods to Grandmother’s house we go,” symbolizes our desire to return to a rural setting for special events like Christmas. “Jingle Bells,” “White Ch...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Nov 30, 2023

    I just made a startling discovery this morning. Many of you may already know this. In fact you probably have known it for years. I’m usually the last on to find out. My revelation? Most people here in our great state of Colorado were raised in, of all places, California! How did I discover this fact? It was easy. It snowed today. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not accusing them of bringing the white stuff with them. Instead, I was able to tell because, in a quest to find a part I needed for a stock...

  • Under the Wire

    Gary Hodgson|Nov 23, 2023

    Darn, it’s that time of year again. Thanksgiving is here. That means another Thanksgiving column. Bummer. Now, don’t get me wrong, I like Thanksgiving. Heck, a day centered around eating a giant bird with bread, celery and spices stuffed where the sun don’t shine is hard to beat. Add to that foods most of us never see any other time of the year such as cranberries, sweet potatoes and my favorite, giblet gravy. Ever come in from a big day of branding calves, moving cows or baling hay to be greet...

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