Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Another neat thing I like about Fall and all it's bounty is that it is a time to maybe do a little bartering with the fellow down the road. Or the lady who owns the peach orchard on the other side of town. Bartering has been around a long time -- longer than Obama's speeches.

Kidding aside, bartering has been with us since before we came to this country. For those of you who don't know how it works, it is really pretty neat. You trade something of yours with something of someone else's. Like, I might have a huge crop of tomatoes and my neighbor might have a overabundance of corn. We get together, and I trade some of my tomatoes for some of his corn.

You can barter just about anything you can think of. My grandfather once, as a kid, worked for this rancher, putting up hay in the rancher's barn. He worked putting up this hay for three days. My grandfather said he worked his butt off for this guy! He had NO money to pay him with, but he had a .22 rifle. He traded those three days worth of work, putting up his hay, in trade for that .22.

At the end of those three days, he walked away with that .22 and over 300 rounds of ammo. Was it a fair trade? You bet it was. Grandfather used that .22 to put meat on the table for his mom and pop and six siblings, even though it was squirrels and rabbits and sage hens. It helped keep his family fed. And it helped his dad supplement what food and whatnot the family needed.

They ate a hell of a lot of beans, he said. Sometimes three times a day. He still loved his beans right up to the day he passed.

So, you could barter for some beans or maybe fix something for somebody, and take some produce, or chickens, or whatever in trade for your time.

With the way the economy is right now, a little bartering could be a good thing. Think about it. Have you extra of something, and maybe your neighbor has something you might like or need? Go have a little chat. Maybe you can work a little magic and you both get what you want or need.

And, we all would be helping each other. When it comes right down to it, isn't that what we should be all about?


  1. I have a bunch of concord grape jelly to trade!

    Or grapes if anyone wants grapes instead.

    OR juice! :>

  2. I barter all the time. Love it. BTW, have you linked at my blog...you do good work here.

  3. Flier389 - here on our island people barter and have bartered forever. my dad once helped a guy re-shingle a barn and was paid with a garbage bag full of smelt. now that's some good eats! my dad did all kinds of odd jobs for people after work and on weekends (he was a coalminer) and was always paid in "something" - whether it was 50lbs of potatoes or turnip or whatever. and whenever my dad needed help - fixing his car or something - he paid people back in kind. it's the way of life around here and having been in the city for the last 25 yrs - it is refreshing to say the least.

    anyway - this is a great post and your granddad sounds like a true and proper man! hubby and i found you and started following you after you commented on our blog. i thought i had put you in our blogroll but just checked and you weren't there - that has been corrected.

    and as my good friend Stephen just said - you do good work here! keep it up! i am enjoying catching up on all of your previous posts!


  4. Bartering is pretty cool. And Pappy was a hoot. He had sooo, many stories. I wish that I had recorded them. And thanks for following my blog.


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