Still Attracted To Those Pretty Deeres
I constantly reassure Lovely Linda (my lovely wife) that when I cast an admiring eye on some finely turned-out young lady it isn’t lust, exactly, but rather an appreciation for the wonders and grandeur of nature.
Linda then rolls her eyes and mumbles something about dogs chasing cars but probably not knowing what to do if they should ever catch one.
But what’s important is the diversion gets me over the rough spot and provides some cover for my honest admiration.
As most of you know, I am committed to Persian Orange and am as faithful to Sweet Allis as I am to Lovely Linda. Yet now and then my eye roves. Sometimes even (gulp) to the Green.
For all my joking about Deeres being easy on the fuel bill (mostly because they don’t start and won’t run), for all those lines about how Deeres are green so they’re tougher to spot when stalled or stuck out in a field. In spite of all that, a pretty John Deere is still pretty. And I can’t resist the temptation to stare whenever I see one really spiffied up and smelling good, or to gawk at one as it passes along a parade route.
I’m reminded of a time when I was first courting Linda, and we stumbled into a shop only to find a former girlfriend of mine working behind the counter. Let me make this perfectly clear: As lovely – er, even stunning – as this young lady was, she would never, of course, even come close to the beauty of my Linda. Not even close. Nonetheless, it was an uncomfortable moment as we transacted our necessary business. I’m sure I was sweating like an Allis man judging a parade in which there is a really gorgeous John Deere.
When we left the store and walked down the street, Linda was dead silent. (She knew who this woman behind the counter was.) I was silent, too, because I had no idea what Linda was thinking or what one says in a circumstance like this.
A good half block of silence later, Linda finally said, “Rog, she would never have been good for you. [dramatic pause] Her eyes are too green, and her legs are too long. Her hair is too silky and full-bodied. Her chest is too big and her waist is too small. Her lips are too full. Her skin is too clear. [pause] No, Roger, she would not have been good for you.” I nodded and said nothing.
So here I am today, writing something that celebrates the impressive and important historical moment of John Deere’s 175th anniversary while still trying to maintain my loyalty to Persian Orange.
So let me put it this way: John Deeres are lovely machines. But they’ll never work. Their engines are too interesting and reliable for you. Their controls are way too convenient. And those pistons are way too big. The steering is way too centered. Their carburetion is way too precise, and the magneto is far too durable. Don't get me started on that hand clutch!
Yep, driving an old John Deere is so much fun, it’s hard on an old guy’s constitution. Especially those good-lookers you start up by spinning the flywheel. Why, a tractor like that is almost like a brazen hussy!
I think the very idea of this special issue pretty much says it all: That John Deere you are admiring has a history. It has a past. And you know what they say about a woman with a past. So it might be best for you and for all of us, if you’d just stick with the tractor you have. Don’t be led astray by that Deere’s wide, adjustable rear wheelbase, narrow front-end, slim body, spring-suspension seat, and alluring multi-implement drawbar. Nope, waaaay too pretty for you.
A Sincere Salute to All Green Machines
All this diplomatic tap dancing aside, as a devoted and faithful Son of the Orange, I, Roger Welsch, hereby salute everything Green and all of you who love them. Some of my best friends – and my wife! – love Deeres.
But don’t ask too much. Next time I run into you and you say something about how ugly Persian Orange is, I’ll fire back something about your tractor missing two of its cylinders and how it has a stutter.
But until then, that sure is a handsome machine you have there. And if I weren’t a man in a committed relationship . . .
By Roger Welsch
Read more about John Deere's history in The Birth of a New Generation of Deeres.