Host Garrison Keillor answers your questions about life, love, writing, authors, and of course, A Prairie Home Companion.
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August 26, 2008 |
Post to the Host:
Garrison, I read your column about your visit to the Iowa State Fair. Everything in the column rang true with the exception of your description of the red Farmall and Allis Chalmers tractors. Of course everyone knows that Allis Chalmers farm equipment is orange, not the dreaded red of Farmall equipment. As the son of an Allis dealer whose local competition was an International Harvester dealer, confusing the two colors is an unforgivable mistake. Shame! A grievous error. Thanks for the many enjoyable years of PHC and newspaper columns.
I am not going to question the son of an Allis dealer on the color of A-C tractors, Dale, but I am darned sure that the Allis tractor I saw in Des Moines was virtually identical in color to the Farmall sitting next to it. I took notes as I walked around and that's what my notes say. There may be a genetic strain of Allis tractors that bred with a Farmall and came out different. Or maybe it got repainted by an Allis owner who aspired to Farmallhood. Anyway, it was a wonderful project by the Iowa FFA to recondition these old tractors and it was probably good that they put up signs saying, "Do Not Sit On Tractor" because otherwise you would've had old men with moon faces camped out on the things, eyes closed, dreaming of their youthful days cultivating beans. People my age are terribly susceptible to nostalgia, Dale. I am not, thanks to my friendships with the young, but others I know get all weepy at the sight of an old tractor. I keep looking forward. Especially to January.