The Ride is Almost Over By: Bill Chupp (Jan/Feb 2018)

American Farming Publication Bill Chupp

There was a big difference in the weather last week as the temperature dropped. I had been hoping for a couple more weeks without a hard freeze, but finally pulled a bunch of turnips to store inside and expected the rest to freeze in the ground. Well. There are still some green tops and nice weather forecasted so just maybe they will still be edible.
At Chouteau Monday evening the Ernest Miller family drove the Chupp Implement tractor through the Christmas parade with the cab door open, wife Linda in the buddy seat tossing out candy while their three youngest children, Karson, Keith and Karla sat on top of the New Holland round baler taking care of spectators on the right side. Hot chocolate in front of the Chouteau Bank of Commerce was popular, too.
But the Pryor parade on Thursday the temperature was in the teens. After a chili dog at the Methodist Church, I froze out soon after the Chupp Implement float. I enjoyed the comments made by the speaker who introduced the float. The future owner of Chupp Implement, Tim McCrate and his six year old son drove the tractor and baler. They were inside the heated cab and were unaware of being talked about.
I went to the Tulsa Farm Show early Thursday morning for a quick walk around. That concrete is getting harder each year, so I only spent one and half hour, as I had a Sertoma meeting at noon. I went back on Friday to finish my tour.
Tom Gann, our State Representative was the speaker at Sertoma, who gave us an update of the happenings at the Capitol. It was a surprise to both the House and Senate when Governor Fallin vetoed the budget proposal. Now there will be another special session. I’m glad that I’m not into politics, although years ago at a Dale Carnegie class someone suggested that I have the voice of a politician! I just don’t think that I have the brains!
I have started making plans for retirement. I have already had a couple of interviews with reporters that were interested in the history of Chupp Implement and the relationship with suppliers. There have been quite a few large hardware and implement short-lines and distributors that have gone out of business during my days in the business.
The largest supplier that I ordered from in the sixties and seventies that called on me was Stowe Hardware in Kansas City. They had the largest catalog on my bookshelf for years. I believe that they were over a hundred years old when they closed. Then there were rotary mower companies. Bush Hog has survived it all as we are still a charter dealer since their inception in 1951.
The rotary mower revolutionized land maintenance and had to withstand severe conditions. The early models broke a lot of blades and gearboxes. Bush Hog was designed with a patented round blade holder called a stump jumper to eliminate breaking blades and gear box shafts. Bush Hog became the one most of the others competed against. When Ronald Reagan held up a sign in support of George H.W. Bush that said “I’m a Bush Hog”, the company called him on it since Bush Hog was a registered trademark so he autographed a copy of the picture to be given to all the dealers. I still have mine.
But I find that things are moving on to new ways to do business. I know when the ride is over, it’s time to dismount and collect the prize money! Isn’t God good? I may write a book “Implement Dealer for Dummies” if I can find a publisher!
To everything there is a season and a time to every purpose under the heaven. Ecclesiastes 3:3 (KJV)
Have a good week. God Bless…