I think I should start this rather curious tale by mentioning that the rear lawn area of Lowe Towers is bordered by a field on which I allow a local lady to graze her sheep. This is not usually an issue in the slightest and is, as you can imagine, very picturesque.
However, this time of year a ram is introduced to the field so nature can take its course … and this latest arrival turned out to be quite a feisty chap…
He was wearing some sort of blue dye filled harness affair across his belly so the farmer could see which ewes he has visited – and as a result looked, it must be said, a bit daft. The expression on his face, in contrast, was very reminiscent of the short bloke in the pub that wants to fight everybody.
This ram didn’t take kindly to any other male, regardless of species, being anywhere near his harem and took to trying to chase anything he saw as a threat away… even if they happened to be in their own back garden minding their own business.
He is perfectly happy with any members of the fairer sex, so we sometimes had the slightly ridiculous prospect of the Ram attempting to pursue me round the garden table while ‘She Who Must…’ simply looking on, both amused and bemused as to what all the fuss is about…
I queried this behaviour with the lady who owned the sheep … and was told I could solve the problem by wrestling the ram to the ground to prove my dominance. Not the most dignified solution I grant you, but certainly more practical than being bent over, removing the extra cabling for the Christmas lights from the garden whilst constantly looking over my shoulder or listening out for approaching hoof beats…
As you’ve probably guessed, in practice it wasn’t going to be that simple. Before I’d even had a chance to don any ram wrestling attire I was informed by the owner I would have to do this as many as 30 times before the ram got the message.
Now, whilst I find the whole idea that somebody could arrive at ‘Lowe Towers’ to see me, only to be told to wait while I finished ‘wrestling the ram on the patio’ highly amusing, I really have got so many better things to do … so hostilities ceased and was replaced by something of a stand-off.
Apparently I wasn’t the only one who had noticed a problem with his aggression, as I was informed at the weekend that my adversary’s ramming days were over as he had been given ‘the chop’ and earmarked for new duties of a more culinary nature.
The message here is nothing as trite as ‘taking the bull (or ram) by the horns’ but more about not being too wrong footed when problems and obstacles come from surprising or, quite frankly, ridiculous directions, or having to resort to a solution that might seem, at first, equally unwelcome or unlikely.
This industry is, as I’ve said before really just normal business moved into another arena – and I speak from experience when I say that sometimes the cutting edge practices being developed in that arena can throw up some very strange and unusual challenges you might not be equipped for, or even knew actually existed.
The simple fact is that you cannot, by definition ‘expect the unexpected’ but you can condition yourself not to be too derailed by what our colonial cousins would call a ‘curve ball’ I have found that a simple mindset of ‘It’ll all be fine – carry on’ and then set about finding a solution has held me in good stead … and I suggest a similar practice might work well for you as well…
Until Next Time,
Publisher, Tim’s Business Lowe Down