Photo: Planet Green
On June 16, Planet Green will begin airing a hilarious new reality T.V. series, "The Fabulous Beekman Boys." The "boys" in question are Josh Kilmer-Purcell and Brent Ridge, two fabulous Manhattanites who decide to buy and revive a farm in upstate New York. Imagine a gay Green Acres and you're on the right track.
They spoke to Slashfood about the show and what goats are really like.
So what's the show about?
BR: We had this farm for about three years and it was pretty much just a weekend place, and then last year we decided that in order to continue to make the farm successful one of us was going to have to make the commitment to live up there full time. Last February, a year ago, I moved up there full time and Josh comes back and forth on the weekends. The show follows our learning curve as we try to become a successful farm and the way it tests our relationship.
How long have you been together?
JKP: We've been together for 10 years or, as I like to say, we've been together for 9 years and apart for 1. The first year of the show really chronicles what I like to call our year of sacrifice which is Brent really sacrificing his career in the city to try and make a business at the farm.
Brent, did you ever get annoyed and feel you were sacrificing more than Josh?
JKP: We both think we're sacrificing more than the other.
Josh, what are you sacrificing?
BR: Not much!
JKP: I'm sacrificing because I would love to be more of a part of the farm and business. It's my great passion too. I'm sacrificing being a full participant.
What kind of farm is it?
BR: We're primarily a goat dairy farm. We have goats milk, cheese and soap.
Tell me something about goats that I didn't know.
BR: They don't eat everything. You always hear about goats eating tin cans. They're actually eating the paper off tin cans. They're as smart as dogs. We bottle feed them from the moment they're born.
BR: If you let the mothers feed them then they become skittish around humans. Some farm purists would say that's not the right thing to do, but truthfully if you're raising animals in a farm environment that's not natural anyway.
Anything else on the farm?
JKP: We raise our own pigs and occasionally a cow for our own consumption. We grow raspberries, blackberries, currants, apples. We also have an heirloom vegetable garden. We grow or raise about 80% of our food. We became vegetarians except for meat we raise ourselves or if we're eating at someone's house because we don't want to be those kind of vegetarians.
Brent, you worked with Martha Stewart. Is it fair to call her "high maintenance"?
BR: She's very demanding. I worked with her for three years and she was a wonderful mentor. She's been very, very supportive of our company and everything we've been doing on the farm.
Any really early morning wake up calls?
BR: We had some early morning conversations. Emails early in the morning, she's an early riser. She starts thinking as soon as she gets up.
How has the farm affected your relationship?
BR: I think it's made our relationship stronger but we have to get all our arguing and fighting and sniping that a regular couple would do during the week, all in a weekend.
JKP: Pretty much.