Dollar

The Palomino Hunt Continues

Well I promised you the story so here it is.  This story goes back a couple or three (yes that is Okie talk) years.

Dear wife finds her potential palomino dream horse (good enough and affordable) up in nowhere Kansas.  Realize we have not seen this horse in person.  We have hooked up the horse trailer and taken a “little” drive across state lines with GPS in hand to a rural address in the middle of BFE Kansas.  To say I felt kinda stupid was an understatement.  It is just a WEE bit hard to negotiate on a horse when you brought your trailer in tow from hundreds of miles away.

Good thing we had the GPS which was designed by my team at Lowrance.  It worked flawlessly.  Too bad it didn’t let me know of some of the fun we were gonna have.

For example we were heading down “nowhere road” intersecting “You gotta be kidding me” road and came to a stop.  Yes there was a genuine stop sign.  There was not a house in any direction as far as the eye could see.  Hell, there weren’t even any FENCES.  I looked up and there was a by God street sign.  That’s right.  A street sign just like you would see in any city block.

Here we were miles from nowhere, with no fences, much less houses and we have a stop sign and a street crossing sign.  I burst out laughing.  I dunno.  I just found it damn funny. Wifey looked at me like I had lost it.  No I hadn’t lost it honey…we have a GPS!

Anyway, the GPS drove us within a few feet of the driveway and we pulled in.  This was a farmhouse, with a barn, shop, tractors, the whole nine yards.  The folks were as nice as any you would meet.  They were hospitable, friendly and obviously cared about their horses.

My wife and them hit it off big time.  Yada yada horses…yada yada, more horses…. We went to look at the horse and BOING!  Wifey was in love.  She was ready to ride him home.  But my wife is too savvy for that.  No no… first she wants to see her new love (forget the husband) go round and round in circles.

Well they didn’t really have an arena but they had a little make shift round pen made out of concrete, steel and sharp objects.  She watched the owner bring him (horse) into the round pen and lead him around.  OK  we’ll take him.  That’s subtle.  No that isn’t E-X-A-C-T-L-Y what happened.  But it felt like it.  No Wifey lunges him (sometimes referred to as “dope on a rope”) for a little while.  Dope on a rope makes you wonder which end of the rope is the dope huh?

Anyway, she is ready to take him home.  She can’t stop hugging on him and petting on him.  Now wait a minute what about that thing called riding I say.  That is what you want the horse for!  Well she says it is windy, strange horse, small area, etc.    NOPE!  Get yer butt up on that horse or I’m not bringing it home.  OK that isn’t the part that was said OUTLOUD but the inside voices said it.

Fortunately, he rode well in spite of the wind, dust etc.  I was satisfied that at least it had potential.  More hugging and petting.  I am starting to feel REEEALLY inferior now.  (Don’t worry it will get worse!)

Dollar Comes Home

The good news is that this horse came home with us totally un-eventval like.  She named him “dollar” in honor of John Wayne’s horse.  OK ya gotta luv that.  And now years later I can honestly say that he has been just about as good a horse as ANYONE could want.  He is gentle, easy going, almost never spooks at anything and is easy to handle in every way.

Wifey still loves him more than me (so what else is new) and you can tell that she couldn’t be happier with him.  I couldn’t be prouder of the way it has worked out for her and have to admit that she was both skilled and lucky with her choice.  He is a good one.  Yes the picture in the corner of this post is our beloved Dollar.

Stay tuned for more lies, and if you want to go say hi to the wifey, head on over to Novice Horseman and check out her blog and her ecommerce store.

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Clinton Anderson Blew My Socks Off!

by Admin on April 27, 2012

Clinton AndersonI like to do things with my wife.  It keeps her happy.  No understanding why she wants to put up with me but there ya go.  Anyway… I told her I would go with her when Clinton Anderson came to town.

Clinton is my wife’s favorite Aussie turned Texan horse trainer.  Whatever…

I forgot about it and then the tickets magically showed up.  Uh oh… put up or shut up time.

It was a 2 day event that was amazing beyond anything I could have expected.  The thing was run more like a rock concert than a horse training lesson.  Good grief!

The announcer came through loud and clear, loud music, smoke, 4 sided scoreboard with media center and more.  Clinton enters the arena (in Tulsa, OK) to the sounds of close to 3,000 screaming fans.

WHAAAAAT?  Did Aerosmith just enter the room?

Nope, it was Clinton Anderson!  OK Yawn…. I had brought my Samsung Galaxy Tab with me in case this got too dull.  I had earbuds too.  Yup I am prepared.

Clinton Anderson and HorseWell waddya know.  This guy is funny as hell!  He puts on a show with his personally trained horse that is quite a demonstration.  That horse acts better than my kid did growing up.  Wow!  Hey better than my wife too come to think of it.  (Sorry dear!)

For two days this went on.  I was spellbound.  This guy could train a fence post to do backflips I believe.

They brought in a horse that was just one step short of a bucking bronco that would just as soon run over you as look at you.  Clinton’s job was to get this horse to load in a trailer.  Yea right.  This thing was snorting and running all over the place.

About 30-45 minutes later Clinton had that horse RUN into the trailer by himself.  He WANTED to go into the trailer.  Previously he wouldn’t go anywhere near the damn thing.

Note:  The trick was to make the horse uncomfortable outside the trailer and let it rest INSIDE the trailer.  It was simply brilliant.  I can’t tell you how many times I have watches a team of mad folks try to get their horse in a trailer.  It usually works in a couple of hours too.

There was a charity event too.  You could buy a tennis ball for $5 and during a segment of the event you could throw the ball toward a stake in the middle of the arena to win a prize.  After that was all done he had all the kids come down and pick up the tennis balls as fast as they could.  I gotta tell you this may have been the funniest part of the whole weekend.  Clinton was hollering at them and trying to get them to do this or that.  Little kids just don’t follow instructions all that well as most parents know.

Anyway I was super impressed with this 3 ring circus of entertainment.  The training lessons were well done with enough humor that I couldn’t stop watching.  It actually got me excited about training horses and horses are NOT my thing.  They are my WIFE’S thing.

So great job Clinton Anderson.  You have a new fan.  If you get a chance to go see him you should DO it.  You will learn, be entertained and have a great time.  You can learn more about Clinton at DownUnderHorsemanship.

The Big Rig

 

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Horse Search In the Middle of Nowhere Part 1…

by Admin on February 28, 2012

Palomino Baby

Wifey tells me that there is a beautiful palomino baby that she wants to go see.  It is “down south” of town.

OK…no problem.

We hop in the car and head “south”.  OK we live in south Tulsa already so we are heading SOUTH!

Through Bixby and out into parts unknown.  The concrete turned to asphalt.  The asphalt turned to dirt/gravel.

Buzzards are seen circling overhead.  The road soon turns to rock chunks the size of your fist up to the size of a loaf of bread.  Had we suddenly turned onto a trail in Colorado?  No…surely not.  We were headed “south”.

I noticed that the buzzards seemed to have disappeared.  Good.  We must be out of range of them now.  What could POSSIBLY go wrong?  Do you remember seeing a house anywhere?  No?  Me either.

The road kept going and going and going.  Left, right, further and further.  We must be near Dallas I thought.  Nope wifey says we are just “south” of town.  RIIIIIGHT!  I guess the anticipation factor was worth some mileage.

Finally! We arrived.  A very nice house and a very nice barn were right there in front of us.  It was beautiful out here but where was “here”?  You can see from the background of the photos that this was in a pasture that went on forever and a bit more.  There was NOBODY around.Nowhere Palomino

The horse was beautiful.  The lady was very nice.  The barn was immaculate as was the horse.  The price was just a touch steep for an untrained baby for our blood.  So we decided to pass on it.  The horse was probably even worth what she was asking but it just wasn’t right for us.

Something about the middle of nowhere breeds horses.  I don’t quite get that.  Wait till you hear about where we DID buy wifey’s palomino.  (The crossing of nowhere and no place. ) Next time…

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Tale of Damage and the Borrowed Horse Trailer

by Admin on January 12, 2012

Horse Trailers in the PastureLet’s talk about damage.  Yup, real bonafied damage.  The kind that makes your wallet go UGH!  This story starts with a horse that we had for not too long.  It ends in Kaching!  What’s in the middle?

One fine day we have gotten our shiny semi-new horse out and have got her tied to the hitchin’ post.  I don’t recall exactly as it was 20 something years ago, but my wife was cleaning her hooves or brushing her or something when the horse gets spooked.  She jumps (the horse not my wife… OK both of them) in every direction and finally pulls on the halter until she BENDS the steel pipe and has it leaning out of the ground.

I gotta hand it to the halter for not breaking.  I gotta hand it to my wife for being fleet of foot to get out of the way of the 1000 pound rodeo but geeez… we just bent 3 “ steel pipe at a place we rent.  Hope no one notices.

Then another time we have the horse over near the Camaro we owned at that time.  Again, I don’t remember … we were getting something out of the car and it was a shady spot…but anyway, we were a little close to my wife’s Camaro.  Again something spooked our big girl and sideways she goes.  Folded that mirror on the driver’s door flat.  Funny, it didn’t USED to be that way!  Car customization at its finest.  Since I am in charge of fixing cars I was …uh…less than pleased.  But I can do these stories all day.

Next comes the borrowed horse trailer.  I think I managed to miss this fiasco in person.  My wife was gonna take the horse somewhere.  She didn’t have a trailer yet.  Her good horse buddy loaned her the horse trailer and of course, newbies that we are thought “what can go wrong?”  Did I mention there are HORSES involved in this story?  A horse can create a problem out of thin air.  They can hurt themselves in a rubber room.  I only wish I was kidding.

Anyway… once again big girl is tied up…this time to the center support on the trailer when she spooks.  Remember that 3” steel pipe she bent.  Well the center support on a two horse trailer is smaller than that.  When she pulled on the halter this time the center support comes out.  That means the top has to come down.  “I wonder if she’ll notice?” we asked.  Surely anyone with half a brain cell would.  So we did what you do for your buddies.  We bent the crap out of her trailer so we have to fix it. KACHING!

I know the above stories make it sound like all big girl did was spook.  That was not the case at all but the moral to this story is that when they do….. WHEN THEY DO… you better have insurance.  As it turned out big girl (name changed to protect the not so innocent) was really a fine horse that has never been given a chance.  With a lot of love and training she became one of the best horses anyone could ask for over the years.  She became my wife’s “go to” horse and gentle enough to be used for riding lessons by the kids at the stables.

But that won’t stop me from telling you these tales that are 97% true.  Most are humorous upon reflection, but cost us lots of rapid heartbeats and dollars during the day.

Do you have a story like these?  Add a comment and let us know?

 

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Of course this is all my own fault and it turned out OK over the years, but let me tell you this started out life as a disaster.  Just sayin’…

Keep in mind that about half of what I tell you is either out of sequence, wrong or made up.  Just ask my wife.  But this will give you the gist of things anyway…but pay attention cause this is NOT how you are supposed to go about getting a horse.  We know.  We learned the hard way and we were LUCKY!  You may not be.

So anyway…

There was a guy where I worked that said he had a horse for sale.  Funny, I had a wife that wanted one.  What a coincidence!  He said his wife didn’t want to ride this horse anymore.  She got bucked off once and was scared of her.  That sounds perfect…just like a horse we should buy.

On top of that this was a race horse that no longer raced.  Well I like all things fast.  We had a Camaro.  So once again, this sounded perfect.  Funny this horse wasn’t even that expensive.  WOW!  What luck.  I mean… how much could a horse cost after you owned it?  To say we were young and stupid was an understatement.

When I told my wife of this great plan it didn’t take long before I had hoofprints on my forehead trying to stay out of the way of this transaction.  Hey this horse looked great.  She was a big girl, beautiful and friendly. And she was going to be aaaaall ours.

The previous owner showed us our new girl liked beer.  I like beer, so this had to be a sign.

Now my wife found a place for the horse, not toooo far from the house.  It was full service but this place was an amazing piece of history.  It was near the airport.  Sometime back in the 40’s this place was a world class facility that must have been something to see. But since it was now 30 years later it was run down.

Still… that is where we decided to go.

We borrowed a trailer.  Oh you need one of those? KA-CHING! we went to go pick up the horse.  It was a small 2 horse trailer and this horse had been fat, dumb and happy in the pasture for some time.  Ya know… sometimes, horses don’t like trailers.  I thought they just walked right in.  “Hey… give her a beer!”  Horses get all “scared” to go in the dark hole.  The booger man might get them. Whatever.

Heck we expected the owner we were buying from would just waltz the horse right on into the trailer and we would go down the road.  Yea, that didn’t happen. Not by a long shot.

After about an hour of coaxing, pleading and begging the horse to get in the trailer, we tried getting a couple of us to lock hands and shove the horse in the trailer.  OK that gets pretty scary.  You have this 1000 pound snorting mess backing out of the trailer at 800 mph and YOU are in the way. A fellow could get stomped on and need a ride in the big white machine with the siren.

So then we got a stock trailer (no solid sides) so it wasn’t dark and scary and she walked right in.  Well it wasn’t totally easy but easier than what we had been doing.  Up till now joining the Marines would have been easier.

Off we go to our new stables.  We even managed to get her off the trailer with out needing an ambulance.  I have no idea how … looking back.  My wife wanted to walk her new girl around and show her new girl the fence line and the surroundings in general.  Our new girl was prancing around.  Hey it was scary getting moved to a new place.  I get that.

Finally the moment of truth came and my wife took the halter off so our girl can run around the pasture.  Did I mention this place was next to the airport?  Well it also turned out that this year they were redoing the runway and so instead of taking off N/S like they always do, they were taking off to the west which was … you guessed it…right over our head.

So you couldn’t have timed this better if you were making a movie, but at the INSTANT my wife let go of the halter a jet came SCREAMING over the treeline and our new girl went straight up.  All she needed was Roy Rogers on her back!  Then she took off like a rocket sled.

I looked at my wife.  My wife looked at me and looked panicked.

Holly cow.  I can almost here the ka-ching noise now.  Will she run into the fence?  Jump the fence?  Will my wife die of a heart attack?  Maan I knew my drawers were gonna need cleaning out when I got home.

We had a crazy butt race horse that was scared out of her minds and two newbie owners who new more about a Camaro than a horse.

Dara and IggeTHIS is the way we started our new life with our new girl.  The first adventure of many to come.

I am not sure I liked the way this was shaping up.  I don’t know if you guys are paying attention to this blog, but if you are dating a girl who is interested in horses you might want to PAY ATTENTION!!!!

Let’s look at the details.

  1. I am out money for buying the horse.  Ka-CHING!
  2. I am not playing my guitar.
  3. We are now paying monthly rent (Ka-Ching!) for the privilege of getting to go out and try to handle a new horse with Jets screaming overhead.

On the bright side:

  1. She loves the whole thing.  I was her hero.  I bought my honey a horse.  That was major brownie points.
  2. Our horse never tried to kill me.  In fact, she was a good girl until you actually tried anything like riding her. Uh-Oh
  3. My wife was getting the immersion method of learning about horses.  (Years later she became a true expert but when we started…well…)
  4. My wife looks good in Cowboy clothes.

Eventually you need to actually RIDE a horse.  Well guess who got to rider her first?  Did I mention that young and stupid thing?  I did didn’t I?

We’ll save that one for next time.  Will it take another trip to the doctor?

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Enter the Horse Woman

by Admin on October 12, 2011

Riding the BroncoI had been married to her awhile when she started jabbering about horses.  First it was “aren’t they pretty?” and soon that turned into “wish I had one” with the emphasis on the word “I”.

I managed to do the manly thing and ignore this whole problem for awhile.  It has been so long ago that now I forget how long I dodged this bullet.

Further she didn’t just want to get a horse she actually wanted to RIDE them.  Good grief!  Couldn’t we just get you a horse coloring book?  Nope.  She was getting INTERESTED.

It turns out that she had been interested since she was a kid but somehow this discussion got missed all the way up till months (or was it years) into the marriage.  Dunno.  Whatever.

Now years later I KNOW why that was not discussed.  Everything related to a horse starts with a sound.  KA-CHING!  Soon to be followed by the sound of destruction, mayhem, broken cars, torn up trailers, vet bills galore, and so much more.

And if you think I am kidding well stick around buck-o  as I will unveil this story as the pages unfold.

OK fine you say, but how did she talk you into getting a horse.  Not so fast.  I have YEARS of torment to drag out.  If I gotta suffer, then YOU gotta suffer.  :)

First thing I had to do was get her ridin’ lessons.  Yup.  Not just any ridin’ lessons mind you, the had to be dressage lessons… or better yet jumping lessons.  Well me bein’ the bright boy that I am didn’t know why she wanted to learn how to dress a horse and you damn well don’t need a horse to JUMP so just get yer little fanny out there and git to it.

WHAT?  You still want ridin’ lessons.  OK.  Well I surprised her with some.  I called every idiot in the phone book and told them I wanted jumping lessons for my wife.  The smart trainers told me that I was the idiot and that she needed a good foundation before she started jumping.

Well me being hard headed said “NEXT” and kept dialing for dollars…you know the kind where YOU have to PAY the dollars.  Anyway, I found a gal who said sure thing I will have her fallin’ on her ass…er… I mean … jumping in NO TIME.

And in just that… NO TIME… I had a super happy wife who couldn’t believe I had actually gotten these lessons for her.  And in NO TIME I had a wife over the horse, crashed into a wooden jump that was made out of timbers big enough for Noah to build an ARK with.

Next stop…the doctor’s office.  This would not be the last.

The saga continues…

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