My Pioneer Woman Top 10 Useless Opinions List

July 10, 2009 at 11:31 pm 30 comments

Just last week, I clicked on the “All Time” search engine referrals for The Bitch Sessions. As can be expected, there were plenty of hits related to chickens and other nonsense, and some really interesting searches related to bitches, in general. The very top search referral, though, with an impressive 678 hits? Drumroll, please………Ladd Drummond.

It doesn’t surprise me that there are hundreds and hundreds of hits for any variation of The Pioneer Woman’s name. She’s probably the most popular female blogger out there. People are very curious. If you ever choose to write a post about The Pioneer Woman, be prepared for the relentless onslaught of searches related to the lovely PW.  The appetite for all things PW is insatiable, equal parts of love and hate, all rolled into one.

But Ladd Drummond? What  do you want to know? He’s a non-blogging, non-celeb married rancher from Oklahoma. Sure, he’s handsome enough, and the the Drummond family is very well known, but I really wonder what people are looking for. 

I don’t claim to know much about The Pioneer Woman, or her husband. I read her site infrequently, and don’t really understand the enormous appeal, and don’t think I ever will. But I do have my opinions,  and that’s all I really have to offer you on the subject.  Without further ado, here’s my PW Top 10 useless opinions list.

1.    I don’t believe she’s under any obligation to inform her readers of every detail of her life, regardless of how many times she’s used the phrase “keeping it real”. She’s a blogger, she’s not taken an oath to tell the truth, the whole truth and nuttin’ but the truth.

2.    I do believe that she and her hubby probably have a happy relationship. The hiney tingles and this new obsession with his  forearms are a little  over the top, but hey, after being married that long, with four kids, I say BRAVO if they’re still sexually attracted to each other. I prefer to take these things pretty much at face value. Why waste your time debating whether a blogger you don’t know, and her hubby you don’t know, are as happy as she’d have you believe?

3.    I don’t understand where the assertions that Marlboro Man is an ass, and treats her badly, come from.  Everything she’s written about him suggest a fairly loving partnership. Yes, that’s definitely what she wants readers to believe, but I have never read any credible reports otherwise. I totally discount comments that start with “I know Ree personally and blah blah blah“. I always feel these comments are left by little troll like creatures who desperately want you to believe whatever pack of lies they are passing about. If these trolls were really friends of Ree and Ladd Drummond, I doubt they’d be telling the world that he’s an ass.

4.    It’s been alleged at another blog that shall remain nameless - y’all know who I’m referring to here – that Ladd and Ree Drummond are basically made of money. It’s been said that they’re worth in excess of 20 million. Are they? I have no idea, but I kind of doubt it. The beginnings of this rumour are undoubtably this article , read and horribly misinterpreted by some truly ignorant people. Yes, court records apparently state that land was sold for this amount, but by Ladd Drummonds father, not Ree and Ladd Drummond. Why would anyone assume all that money passed to Ladd? Why even assume any of that money has been passed on? Taxes, debts and liabilities, other business interests, anything could have swallowed up that money. And if it has, or will be, passed on to family, there’s more than Ree and Ladd to consider, including his brother and six or seven grandchildren. It is reckless and irresponsible to promote the idea these folks are millionaires many times over. And, honestly, folks, if you were worth in excess of 20 million buckaroos, would you be getting up before dawn every damned day to work a long day in the Oklahoma weather? Not me.

5.    Homeschooling is not for everyone, but for some it works. I don’t know, nor really care, about the details of Ree’s lesson plans, but an intelligent person would reasonably assume she’s educating those children properly. Both she and her husband are college graduates, it’s perfectly reasonable to expect she intends her children will also attend college. The idea that the Drummonds are training those children to be nothing more than ranch hands is laughable, especially if you do buy into the idea that they’re fabulously wealthy.

6.    I have no frickin’ idea if the Drummonds employ a nanny, a gardener, a housekeeper or a billy goat trainer. I can’t imagine why it matters to folks, but “Ree Drummond nanny” appears in my search results often enough for me to know that many of you do care. It would be my guess, based on nothing but logic, that she does not. Regardless of what some may think, I don’t believe that she’s trying to portray herself as a “true” pioneer woman, beating the laundry off a rock down at the crick. She has no problem blogging about the other creature comforts they enjoy, has blogged about babysitters and household help before. Why assume she’s hiding a deep dark secret involving domestic help? She’s no Kate Gosselin, folks.

7.    When I was growing up, my siblings and I all had to pitch in and do some serious work around the house and property. Generally, it’s what was expected of children in those days, at least where I’m from. So, no, I don’t think her children are being used as cheap labour, nor do I think it’s abuse to have them get up early to work with their father. It’s ridiculous for anyone to assume Ree and her Marlboro Man schemed to keep the kids home from school just so they’d have cheap labour on the ranch. 

8.    No, I don’t think she’s a great photographer, but I didn’t know she ever claimed to be. Everything I’ve ever read from her is chocked full of disclaimers about how she’s not a professional. Personally, I like the fact she has outside contributers, I probably wouldn’t look at her photography section much at all otherwise.  But, while there’s not much I can learn from Ree about photography, I am sure her tips and lessons have been invaluable to many others. If photography is a new passion, any tips and advice are helpful.

9.    Will I buy her cookbook? Absolutely not. I’m sure that it’s going to be lovely, and full to the very brim with photos, but I’m not a fan of much of her food. Only a few of her recipes have ever made me want to cook. As with her photography section, her guest food posters are interesting, and Pastor Ryans  Spicy Orange Shrimp were really good. But I can’t stand to wade through three dozen pictures of her chopping onions on every recipe. I understand the point of it all, but it’s not for me. I can’t imagine it will be any different in her cookbook.

10.    God, do you really want more? I don’t know if I have another logical thought to throw at you, so I will end by saying her contests and giveaways rock, and good luck to each and every one of you who enter. Myself, I’m holding out for one of those lovely Nikon’s.

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Saving the Children….One Chicken at a Time Dance, Chicken, Dance

30 Comments Add your own

  • 1. homeslice  |  July 11, 2009 at 1:04 am

    i’m with you on this one. i don’t get her appeal but i’ve never read her enough to hate her guts, so i’m sort of mystified by the whole thing. i’ve TRIED to read her blog but it bores the living bejesus out of me. i don’t mean that in a bad way – obviously millions are entertained by it – but it’s just not my thing.

  • 2. Nyt  |  July 11, 2009 at 10:58 am

    I’ve never understood why PW just can’t be taken at face value. Like any other blog, some days it’s interesting, some days it’s not. I will say this though, her photos of the lodge renovation went a long way to fueling the speculation of the Drummonds wealth. Having done a couple of renovations myself, I can see that there was quite a bit of money invested. But that’s it. I have no idea where the money came from, nor do I care. It seems that the latest trend is for others to decide how much is “enough” for everyone else.

  • 3. Joyfully Annonymous  |  July 11, 2009 at 7:03 pm

    Ha ha ha, one of CL’s brain dead minions thinks you ARE PW.

  • 4. The Queen B  |  July 11, 2009 at 7:37 pm

    Joyfully Anonymous,
    Shush – that’s supposed to be my secret. I am Pioneer Woman by day, Super Bitch by night.

    Now, I wonder how many mindless idiots will take that at face value.

  • 5. ReallyMJ  |  July 11, 2009 at 7:47 pm

    Don’t worry, Queen B. They’re just pissed anyone could write a post that doesn’t suggest PW’s the devil’s own.

    I don’t follow PW much myself but I enjoy your take on it. I’m with you – I don’t think they have that much money. I mean, you can tell they’ve got cash but I don’t think they’re rolling in it. And why why why do people care so much about her marriage?

  • 6. Sherry  |  July 11, 2009 at 7:53 pm

    I’m a huge PW fan. She’s entertaining, her life is so different than mine. I’m a city girl, but always envisioned life on a ranch to be exciting. I also like how she doesn’t whine and complain like so many other bloggers do. It’s a little refreshing.

    I searched her husband because I wanted to know what the story was on the Drummond family. I’ve read they’re one of the largest landowners in the US and I had seen the article written about the 20 million. I suppose I just wanted to know what the truth was.

  • 7. Joyfully Anonymous  |  July 13, 2009 at 1:03 am

    “Funny, last time I checked, I could think for myself and I wasn’t hooked up to any machines, wasting away in a coma.”

    LMAO! She actually has to check?

    Definitely brain dead.

  • 8. Oh Joy!  |  July 13, 2009 at 3:24 am

    Food blogs are my thing and that’s how I’ve found Pioneer woman. In the beginning I was curious about her, but after a while her blog just became boring. My initial curiosity is what eventually led me to Poop on Peeps and this site. As a matter of fact I haven’t even heard of any of these “famous” bloggers until I’ve read PoP. In the real, working life they are still nobodies.

    I check PW every now and again because let’s face it… she has some really nice give-aways. Except for that she’s really boring and her recipes makes me gain 2 pounds just looking at it. But I really just don’t understand the hatred.

    Just looking at her kids one has to think that their parents are doing something right. But then again, these days everyone’s brood is treated like special needs kids. God help us!

    As for PoP I thinkof it as a bunch of sorry, lonely women, kind of like a bunch of old ladies at a knitting club. Gossiping is what makes their existence a little more bearable. Kind of like a wanking circle.

  • 9. Gi  |  July 13, 2009 at 5:54 am

    I wonder where Ms T Chirp Chirp is right now… :p

  • 10. Lizzie  |  July 13, 2009 at 7:21 pm

    Joyfully anonymous, please tell me you are not Margalit as suggested over at the “wanking circle” that is PoP. Because she’s a little scary, and I think I like you.

  • 11. Joyfully Anonymous  |  July 14, 2009 at 12:18 am

    Ha ha ha, Lizzie. I saw that too. No, I am not Margalit.

    *shudder*

    Depressing thought for the day: mewling simpletons like that can breed and vote. We’re all doomed.

  • 12. The Queen B  |  July 14, 2009 at 11:32 pm

    Funny, isnt it? I must be PW because I wrote something not completely bitchy about her. You must be Margalit because you don’t like Chick? These people are pretty simple in their views, I must say.

    The Chicklets think we must be bloggers who were “targets” at Chick’s poopy site. Why? Do they honestly believe the only ones who could dislike Chick and her methods are her victims? Hilarious!

  • 13. The Queen B  |  July 15, 2009 at 2:55 am

    Oh Joy!,
    I know – bloggers make a very, very big deal of the biggies like PW and Dooce, but the average person doesn’t have a clue who they are! In todays world, even having a million readers doesn’t make you a “somebody”.

    I don’t really give much of a damn about PW and her site. Basically, it’s pretty boring and horribly repetitive, but I don’t get why she and her family have to be slammed so much over a frickin’ website. It’s past the point of idle gossip, though – it’s downright hideous what’s been said about her. I don’t even care much for her, and I feel kind of sorry for her.

  • 14. Gi  |  July 16, 2009 at 3:01 am

    Hi lovelies, I think this blog post sums up about the mentalities of the minions @ PoP:

    http://enterthecircle.wordpress.com/2007/06/24/successful-women-haters-club/

  • 15. Amy  |  July 16, 2009 at 5:53 am

    I dont mind PW at all. Shes not constantly bitching and moaning about life but shes not over the top corny either.

  • 16. Fame analyst  |  July 17, 2009 at 11:25 pm

    Isn’t it kind of retrograde to act as if internet famous is less worthy than non-internet famous? What’s that all about? For the most part, internet stars make it on their own without riding on other’s coat tails. why tear hem down for that and suggest that it’s better to find an audience by appearing on Oprah?

    Internet fame is the wave of the future. They’re trail blazers.

  • 17. Some state, does that work for you  |  July 27, 2009 at 6:47 am

    Gah, I just want to say that Texas is so dense that it’s mind blowing. CRITICAL READING SKILLS, people. They have classes and everything.

  • 18. BC  |  July 28, 2009 at 6:32 am

    Just saw this post and wanted to contribute…

    PW is living the life I left. Sort of.

    I grew up in a farming / ranching family in Oklahoma, and though we lived in town and not on the farm, and though we lived about four hours from where I believe Ree Drummond lives, I absolutely *get* her life.

    To me, it’s not the least bit boring. It’s personally nostalgic. Having helped with a cattle drive or two and having grown up on many a fried food, having parents who had big parties for their friends in the backyard with a commercial deep fat fryer in order to cook up what *we* called ‘calf fries’… I just ‘get her’.

    Now I just rent out the ranches I inherited when my father passed away, and reading her stories of day-to-day life hauling hay and working cattle take me back.

    Regarding the $20M land deal and whether anyone with that kind of cash would get up that early and work that hard in the Oklahoma heat if they didn’t have to… yes, they would. And they do. All the time. I know plenty of people who fit that description to a T. It’s just part of the work ethic that is ingrained in people of the land.

    I can’t imagine they don’t have some pretty significant mineral rights on top of any ranching interests they enjoy. I couldn’t help but notice that they lodge renovation seemed to begin when oil was roughly $20,000,000 / barrel. Coincidence? Who knows! But I do know that there for awhile there was money flowing freely as drilling rigs were going up all over the place in Oklahoma. If she’s from Bartlesville as I think she is, that’s none other than the former headquarters of Conoco (before they merged with Phillips).

    If they’ve got money, so what? She’s never portrayed herself as some homesteading, simple living, organic-food-eating country wife. She’s portrayed herself as a ‘city girl’ who fell in love with her own life living on the land. That’s actually pretty unusual, as people who have had Starbucks and Target right around the corner rarely find peace in a world that probably still has party line phones a couple of miles up the road.

    I say let her have her outlet. Why anybody spends their time spinning their wheels all day over anyone else’s reality is beyond me. I think the naysayer of which you speak in this post should really launch herself into the world based on something she has personally *accomplished*, not just continue to ride the coat tails of those who seem to have made it into the cool crowd by bashing them.

  • 19. LC  |  August 16, 2009 at 12:32 am

    I found this page during a search, and wow…I honestly had no idea that anybody had a problem with PW! I guess if you don’t like her, I understand, but it seems like she’s just a normal person who blogs, makes money at it, and keeps her readers entertained. I think it’s so bizarre that people have some kind of vendetta against her. Weird.

  • 20. byjane  |  August 19, 2009 at 1:37 am

    Gee, you mean that PW is still blogging? I had to drop her from my reader last year because she was just too Pollyanna-ish for me. It seemed to me that her posts were a recitation of “how wonderful my life is and yours isn’t.” I just couldn’t relate. She’s the only blogger that I’ve actually dropped. Frankly, she depressed me.

  • 21. Mrs. Accountability  |  September 14, 2009 at 12:28 am

    I just saw on Amazon that Ree’s husband’s name is Ladd (Ladd?!?), googled his name and found this blog. Of course it makes sense that for all the people who love her, there will be those that can’t stand her and feel rubbed the wrong way by her. However, I’m one of the lovers of PW. She is one of those people with boundless energy and a wonderful metabolism to be able to withstand her own cooking, lol. I am definitely buying her cookbook and sorry that I missed out on her calendar, and will definitely consider making an “I LOVE PW” post to bring in more hits to my blog. LOL.

  • 22. Luckyduck63  |  October 4, 2009 at 12:32 am

    Oh dear lord, thank you for writing this! I was sure I was the only person on Earth not in love with Pioneer Woman. I don’t hate her, I don’t find her offensive, I just don’t understand the hype. I understand that blogs are all me,me,me….but hers is over the top. I get it, Ree…you were a ballerina. I get it,Ree …you married a rich cowboy. I get it, Ree….you gave birth once without an epidural (like millions of other women). I get it, Ree…you know how to chop an onion. Her veiled attempts at self-deprecating humor that actually self-flattery, well it’s just a bit much for me. I wish her a happy life of ranching and blogging, but I need a bit more realism.

  • 23. Catherine  |  October 4, 2009 at 12:44 am

    This will tell you a bit about the Drummond family:

    http://www.tulsaworld.com/news/article.aspx?articleID=070729_1_A1_hFour01672&allcom=1

  • 24. ann revere  |  October 4, 2009 at 1:29 pm

    It never occurred to me that there are folks out in blogland who hate PW. I read her ‘confessions’ every day. I love watching her kids grow up. She’s funny and worth a casual read, and I like her pictures.

    I know a bit about photography and she’s good. Not great, but beyond good enough.

    So, PW haters, go find someone else to feel jealous about, will ya?

  • 25. JJ  |  November 6, 2009 at 5:29 pm

    Earth to people out there – no one is forcing you to read PW. If you don’t care for her blog, then don’t read it.

  • 26. Fiona Skye  |  January 16, 2010 at 9:23 am

    Ever see the movie “Romeo Must Die?” It’s a pretty good flick. Anyway, there’s this one scene when Bad Guy #1 is messing about with Unfortunate Victim #Whatever, who is a crab fisherman. Bad Guy riles up a bucket of crabs and says something about how every time a crab makes it to the top of the pile, all the crabs he’s just climbed over drag him down again. People who complain about others’ successes are the crabs who drag the successful crabs down into the seething mass of hatred and discontent. Instead of being happy and applauding someone else’s success, there will always be someone who lets their jealousy get the better of them. It’s sad and rather pathetic, really.

  • 27. Anonymous  |  February 5, 2010 at 2:26 am

    I’ve got a pretty good reason to believe Ladd Drummond’s net worth is around $17M.

  • 28. The Queen B  |  February 5, 2010 at 3:54 am

    Would you like to share how you came to that figure? I find it very hard to believe a new worth that high.

  • 29. cutiepie  |  March 22, 2010 at 8:28 am

    That number isn’t hard for me to believe!

    I don’t know Ree of course, but live two towns over. I do like the blog. The Drummond family collectively is the largest landowner in the state of Oklahoma. In the country, they are the 77th largest landowners. They split up the land into smaller sub-ranches, which each “family” runs and profits. Ladd and his brother own 20,000 acres and collectively the entire extended family owns 120,000 all together, some which belongs to Ladd’s father, some to his uncles and cousins.
    The family would own several more thousand acres, execpt they sold a chunk to the state of Oklahoma back in the 50s so the state could put in a man-made lake. Skiatook Lake is on former Drummond property. Back then, the state paid several million for that land. (of course, which drummond that particular money belongs to, i have no idea.)

    Ladd’s grandfather also owns the bank in my town (and yes, i mean OWNS. Ladd sits on the board and is a very large shareholder. It is a local bank, not corporate, with assets of 150 mil. It was bought by Ladd’s grandfather in the early 1900s). They also own another “smaller” bank in another town.

    As for Ladd and Ree personally, the cattle and mustangs they run are worth millions alone, without the land as asset. Just facts. Their mustangs are protected by the government, and that govt check alone is tremendous. They are paid to maintain the animals, which are endangered. They basically saved the mustangs from being slaughtered by providing land for them to roam.

    We have a small ranch (less than 1,000 acres) and my husband trades and sells with some of the Drummonds. They have upwards of 7,000 head of cattle, and at least half of them are mother cows.

    I think most people around here know that. You don’t have to dig for it. The original Drummond “mansion” sits at the edge of their 120,000 acres and the family donated it to the state not long ago. It is a working museum of the most famed cattle families in the state.

    They are good people and true land conservationists. They (patriarch Fred Drummond), along with the people Ted Turner employs to run his ranch in the Osage Territory, are the reason the Tallgrass Prairie Reserve is sustained and the buffalo are protected. The Drummonds own the land, but the Osage tribe owns the mineral rights as given to them by the government in the early 1900s… and the Osage do not exercise the rights. They keep the oil in the ground and the Drummonds make sure the prairie grasses do not become extinct, because they rotate the cattle, mustangs and buffalo in different corners of the land.

    Nothing but wonderful people, and I don’t know anyone in Oklahoma who knows them and doesn’t like them and have kind things to say about them. They may be very wealthy, but they represent our state very well and work with the tribe to take care of the land.

    Not only that, but their cowboys and hands aren’t just underpaid grunt workers. They are shareholders in the cattle company and after so many years of service are rewarded with pasture land they can operate on their own. They aren’t rich bastards, the Drummonds are pretty good people.

  • 30. cutiepie  |  March 22, 2010 at 8:37 am

    @Catherine:

    That article tells me nothing except that they like to speed. Big deal. I suppose you’ve never gotten a speeding ticket? So the DA dismissed the tickets. Big whoop. If the people living in the county didn’t like it, they would have voted him out of office.

    In my life, I’ve had four speeding tickets reduced to nothing. I guess you should attack me, too. That’s two more than PW’s husband.

    Yawn.

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