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Tractors Drive Themselves: One Man’s Return to the Farm

2012 Column Contest Winner

Matthew James called his bank the other day. A woman answered and said, “Well hi, Matt. How’s your mom been?” This is both comforting and disconcerting. That is his life now. After 15 years away, a writer returns to the corn farm where he grew up and the small-town life that most of America left behind. He might be the only person with tickets to see Louis C.K. in San Francisco who doesn’t know how he’s getting there. And by “there,” he means an airport.