"I want one purebred doe before fall. That's my goal," I announced to my
roommate as she tried to concentrate on the chat room she was in. "One
good one, because at these prices I can't afford more than one good one
a year," I went on, oblivious to the fact that she was rolling her eyes
in disbelief at my claim. A breeder had sent me her sales list, complete
with pics, and the doe I'd selected cost more than my Suburban. Granted
it's a 22 year old Suburban, but anyway. "What do you think of her?" I
nagged, waving the brochure around my unresponsive roommate's head.
Finally she caved in to my incessant harping, and turned around to face
me. "One more goat, is that it?" she glared skeptically. "How many times
have I heard THAT one before?" I slunk back to my chair. "This time it's
different," I mumbled. "These are purebreds, I can't very well just come
home with more than I'd planned on buying." "I have no doubt you'll find
a way," she snorted derisively, and turned back to her computer.
I confess, I've got a flawless track record of going off to buy one
goat, and coming home with considerably more than one. After buying the
farm, I'd convinced her that a little goat would help keep the weeds
down around the barn. I didn't mention my ulterior motive to begin
breeding Boer goats, starting with percentages, nor did it occur to her
that one little goat couldn't possibly keep the weeds down on 20 acres.
All she knew was that one morning I went off to get a goat, and one
afternoon I came home with four goats, two of which were quite pregnant.
Her confusion was evident when I dropped the tailgate on the Suburban,
and like circus clowns pouring out of a VW Bug, goats just kept hopping
out of the back. "I thought you were just going to get one," she
stammered as one of the new goats nibbled on her shorts. I tried to
convince her that four would do a much better job of clearing the weeds
out, and that we'd have babies in no time, which would be lots and lots
of fun, but I could see it wasn't registering with her. She just
couldn't see how one could equal four, although she could see how one of
the four was about to equal three, and another one was going to equal
two, for a total of nine. I tried to tell her it was new math, but she
wasn't buying it.
Months later, I went on another trip to pick up "one goat", and to be
sure I didn't screw it up this time, my roommate came along for the
ride. From a sea of several hundred, I quickly spied the one I
wanted..... and another I felt sorry for. On the way out, I saw a Kiko I
simply had to have, and as we loaded the one-turned-three into the
Suburban, an aged Saanen came up and insisted I bring her home as well.
My roommate swears that goat didn't say a thing, but I heard her quite
clearly. Amid squeals of protest, I paid the man and scurried home with
my new goats. I figured my roomie would settle down after a few days,
but I wasn't counting on one of the new goats dropping twins that
evening, and a second one delivered quads a few hours later. "Someone
please tell me how one goat can turn into ten goats overnight," she
sighed in defeat as she stared at the six newborns cavorting about the
garage-turned-nursery. I had no insight to offer her, and besides, I was
busy looking through the classifieds for goats for sale.
It should come as no surprise that she viewed my latest announcement to
purchase a single purebred Boer doe that year with skepticism, but I
really did intend to purchase just one. After all, how could I afford
more than that? The farmhouse lacked a number of features, such as air
conditioning, more than one working sink, and in a few rooms, glass in
the windows. The thought of my spending thousands of dollars on more
mouths to feed when the house needed so much work was just preposterous.
One Texas summer spent with no a/c was enough, and I had no intentions
of doing it again. Nope, one doe and that was it. After that, all the
money went into the farm. So determined to stick by my claim was I, that
I didn't give any of the other does a second look when I went to pick up
my new girl. I didn't peek at a one while we loaded her up. It wasn't
until the tailgate was closed and the breeder said, "Would you be
interested in this doe I have that's about to deliver?" that I began to
lose my resolve. When she threw in that I could pay her later, you could
almost hear my willpower crumble and hit the dirt. When I got home with
not one, but two goats, you could definately hear my roommate's hand as
it thwacked me upside the head. "What is the matter with you?" she
shrieked as the two stared at her over the tailgate. "What happened to
ONE more goat?" I concentrated on interesting patterns in the dirt at my
feet as she carried on in disgust. "Have you noticed that there are
HOLES in the exterior walls of this place?" She tried to make me see
that spending money on new siding and insulation was good, and spending
it on more goats was bad, but it was futile. Eventually she gave up
trying to reason with me and went back inside.
Common sense not being my strong point, I barely waited a week before
checking out a breeder friend's sales list on his web site. Upon seeing
a particular doe's price tag had dropped considerably, my common sense
vanished all together. A few quick emails and a deposit in the mail
later, I had another goat on the way. "She's bred out the butt," I
offered feebly as my roommate just stared at the naked subfloor in the
kitchen. "I couldn't pass up a deal like that," I continued, trying hard
not to see the drywall crumbling down from the ceiling. As she stared in
silence, I allowed myself to believe she was going to take it in stride.
Apparently it was the calm before the storm. Her eyes narrowed to slits
as she took a step towards me. "I have PLYWOOD for windows in my room,"
she screeched, veins bulging in her forehead. "I have to brush my teeth
in the kitchen sink because there IS no bathroom sink, and you want
another *$(# goat?" I slunk back against the wall as she advanced on me.
"One more goat, that's what you always say, and then you come home with
half a dozen!" As she continued foaming at the mouth, it occured to me
why so many men were terrified of getting married. I suspect the result
is similar when they come home with a new drill. "We're never going to
get this place restored if you keep buying goats," she snarled as she
stomped off to brush her teeth in the kitchen sink. I knew she was
right, so I swore to myself that this was the LAST one for the year. The
fact that it was only May didn't matter, because this was the LAST
one I was going to buy. Yep, last one. After that, all my money went to
local contractors and home improvement stores. All the way to pick up
the last new goat, I reminded myself that this was the last one until
the next year. I didn't stop reminding myself of it until I pulled out
of his drive, at which point I wondered if I could get all of the guns
in the house hidden before she got a look in the Suburban.
She didn't say much when I came home and unloaded four new goats, just
stared unblinking for a few moments, and then retreated to the safety of
her goat free room clutching the Roommates Wanted section of the
classifieds. In less than a year, I'd gone from one-equals-four goats
to close to thirty, and now that everyone was having babies, the number
was expanding at an alarming rate. She knew an addiction when she saw
it. That's good too, because my friend just emailed me to see if I
wanted three more he was about to sell.