I had this great idea. I was going to do a website about me buying a calf, raising him, and then eating him. It was going to be called, RaiseitEatit.com. I went into it thinking that there are a lot of people like me in the world. A person that loves meat but not sure what in the heck I’m buying in the store. Myself and a guy that works for me decided we’d raise our own steer. So we went ahead and decided we’d attend the next auction. As I headed out to auction (I had forgotten to tell her where I was going) my wife asked what I was doing. I told her of my plan. She proceeded to tell me that I was crazy, looked forward to the meat, and don’t do the website.
She told me the website would be too controversial and would harm my future political, business, and major motion picture star aspirations. I could see her point but I was hungry and headed to the auction anyway. The auction was at an Amish auction house and was packed. I had no idea that this was happening in the world. Every Saturday, every day people brought all their animals and sold them to the highest bidder. I expected old guys in cowboy boots chewing on a piece of straw. I saw families and kids. I only had one problem. I didn’t know a steer from a cow. All I knew was stay away from the one with udders. Luckily, the guy I was with knew his steer. He said we wanted Angus. I asked him how I would know if it was Angus. He said as long as it had 51% black hair it would be “Certified Black Angus”. It made me lose my focus. I was now feeling like I had been ripped off at every steak house I’d ever eaten. I had no idea Angus only meant the color of the damn cow. I got over my disappointment and was ready to bid.
Here was my strategy. I would enter the bidding when an Amish guy started bidding on a cow. My friend had his idea of which ones he liked and I would target that calf and if an Amish guy bid, I was in. Amish know their beef. At least that what I think. About a half hour in, one of our favorites came up. He was a little bigger than I wanted, he was already 400 pounds but he looked real tasty. Right off the bat, an Amish guy bids. I’m in. This one was mine. I certainly have more money than an Amish guy, right? Mr. Yoder must have really wanted this one because the bidding got up to $300 quickly and I was ready to get out when I decided to use the old trick. Mouth a really high number to my partner. I mouthed to him so that the Amish guy could hear ” You still want me to go to $600?” It worked and I got him for $350. Internally I jumped for joy but on the outside I acted like I was a cattle rancher that did this every day. Of course I have no idea what I’m doing and with out my partner I don’t think I would have even remembered to bring a trailer to take it home.
But he did and we took him home. I could taste the fillets already. My partner lives on a farm and has plenty of room to raise the thing so off he goes to get big and tasty. Our partnership works like this. I pay for the calf, he pays for the feed, split the butchering. We decided that we’ll raise him on grass, some hay, and some cracked corn. We even buy a corn cracker to save a bit of money. My partner’s 6 year old daughter decided to name him. I didn’t want the kids getting too attached to this thing but my fears were soon rested when his daughter named him “Hammy”. Evidently everyone knows the purpose of raising this thing, everyone buy Hammy.
When Hammy was young, he was actually fun to play with. You could go in the field and goof around with him but that soon changed. Somebody must have sent Hammy an email telling him his purpose because he became a son of a bitch. He started throwing his water buckets, chasing me, and basically trying to kill me. I wanted to eat him early. Unfortunately he’s not quite ready yet. It looks like it might be a couple more months. Evidently, you can tell when they’re ready to be butchered when they get little rolls on their butt right under their tail. I told my wife this and she said “I guess I’ve been ready for butchering since I turned 30”.
To prepare for all the meat (I get half) I purchased a few deep freezers. Every year I have purchased an eighth of a cow so I am prepared for all the meat. Basically it’s 4 times more than we normally eat in 8 months. But I’m ready. I’m ready for meat that I raised, that I know exactly what’s in it, and that I butchered. Just kidding, no way I could do that. He’s going to be loaded in the butchers trailer and be sent back in wax paper. I’m all for raising my own beef but I’m no killer.
As for the website. I never even registered the website but I still like the concept and the name. What got me thinking about this whole story was I was talking to a new friend today, PK who owns filetmignons.com and we got to talking about me raising my own beef. He loved the story and said he thought his company sold the finest filet mignon in the country. He was so sure that he is going to send me some to try. Now I am going to have a taste test. The finest filet mignon in the country against MY fillet mignon. I’m going to try and return the favor and see what he thinks of mine. He has a great supplier but maybe I can scale this thing and start supplying him. I’m just not sure what to do with the rest of the cow after I give him the fillet. I can’t eat that much meat.