ERROL PARKER | Editor-at-large | Contact

When local farmer Tim Campbell says you just can’t win being a farmer, he means it metaphorically.

The 70-year-old has had many wins. He drives a near-new Landcruiser, all his kids when to exclusive private boarding schools and then onto even more exclusive university colleges.

There’s always room in the family budget for him, his wife’s and all four of their children’s membership dues down at Royal Betoota.

So when Tim says you just can’t win being a farmer, he obviously means something else.

This time, it’s barley.

Just nine days ago, Tim did the final lap sowing nearly four-thousand acres of the stuff.

“We had a good drop at the start of the month, on top of a great April and February. So I thought, fuck it, might as well try to make a profit this year so I sowed a few thousand acres of barley, a fine cash crop. Takes to salinity better than wheat, bit hardier. Tougher, it is. If barley was a footy player, it’d be Cameron Smith.”

“So with the news today, I mean, mate, what can you do? Tell you what I did, I went out into the middle of the paddocks I’d just sown with barley and I just fucken laughed. I was bent over in the paddock with tears rolling down my fucking bloodshot cheeks,”

“You just can’t fucking win, can you? I mean, you try to do something good. Give the taxman something to invoice me for but fuck, not anymore. It’s not even worth fucking stripping. I’ll let it grow up and pray for a fucking hailstorm. Either that or let the pigs eat it, let the townies come in and gut shoot the lot of ’em. Let their fucking dogs off, chasing those pigs, might even lose a lamb or two? Who fucking knows? You can’t predict the fucking future, evidently.”

More to come.


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