Here’s a conversation.
Event Horse: You’re going to jump me today.
Me: How do you know?
Event Horse: I just do. I’m clairvoyant that way
Me: No, you’re not. I just put the elastic breastcollar on you with the open front boots. That’s how you know.
Event Horse: Well, if I start coughing and breathing extra hard, can we just go for a walk instead? I’d like to not jump today if it’s all the same to you.
Me: You have to jump. We have a SCHEDULE.
Event Horse: Oh, THAT. That’s right. The SCHEDULE. It’s on the wall in the tack room, right? Can I take a look at it when we get back in the barn?
Me: No. You most certainly cannot. I don’t need you to “lose” a shoe right before the event.
Event Horse: Those always happen purely by accident. I swear.
Me: Yeah, right. Just like you know when I enter something very expensive with a very early closing date and no refunds.
Event Horse: I do have clairvoyance. See?
Me: No, you don’t. You look through the window into the office and see me on the computer on Tuesdays and put two and two together.
Event Horse: I can’t help it. I just have to know what is going on. All the time. Like when you reset the jumping course and put that dreaded Green Roll Top somewhere different.
Me: Oh come on. That thing is about 25 years old and you’ve been jumping it for three years at least. And — it’s only 12 inches high! Big bad event horse … right.
Event Horse: Oh, you don’t know the boogie monsters, trolls, and ghosts that live under that horrid thing! Why, I see one right now, as a matter of fact. Did you make sure you put the neck strap on today? [Whirls]
Me: [Grabs for non-existent strap and goes WAAAAAYYYYYY up the neck] Ooooohhhhhheeeeeeeyyyyyy
Event Horse: Just when you think you are in charge. I am not giving up my throne just yet.
Me: Oh for cripes’ sake! Just for that, you get an extra trot set this week.
Event Horse: No biggie. I can handle it. (Snickers to himself — I know that right front shoe is loose, I’ll work on it tonight in the pasture.)
Me: So, are you warmed up enough? Are you ready to jump?
Event Horse: (Whines) OK, I’ll drop a rail on the first warmup fence. You’ll have to get off, put it back up, and then walk me back to the barn to get back on at the mounting block. While you’re turning me around, I’ll jerk the reins out of your hand and take off through the back of the barn and run out back to eat grass. Then I’ll step on the reins, breaking them. And the flapping stirrup on the saddle will get ripped off when I run real close to the corner fence post. I’ll pretend it scared me and take off bucking down the track. You’ll be really mad, then! You won’t want to jump for at least a week!
Me: (Huffing from running to catch the loose event horse with one stirrup and broken reins) So sorry, my dear. I’m tying a knot in the reins, putting the stirrup back on, going back to the ring and YOU’RE JUMPING ANYWAY.
Event Horse: Really? REALLY? I’ll just loaf along to the ring, here and she’ll change her mind – Oooooh she hit me with a stick! She must REALLY be mad now. I’d better jump a little here. OK, OK, I’m jumping, I’m jumping now! No worries!
Me: We. Are. Going. To. Jump. School. Today. No matter what!
Event Horse: I believe you. Huff, puff. I’m jumping!
Me: OK. That was good. Now we can walk. I’m going to work on the app on the phone that helps me figure out how fast we’re going so we can do our canter and trot sets closer to the proper speed.
Event Horse: Speed? Speed? I’m built for comfort, not for speed. I don’t do “gallop.” Well, I do, but it’s not very fast. Actually, it’s more like a canter. [Thinks to himself]
Me: Don’t you dare fake that limp.
Event Horse: Limp? What limp? Who’s limping? [Thinks to himself]
Me: There, that’s better. You’re doing so well, I think this is a good time to quit for the day. [Scratches withers] Good boy! [Smiles]
Event Horse: I got this. She has no idea … [Smiles]