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Some Mondays start less with a bang than with a whimper. They don’t so much fizzle into existence as they ooze, flabby and bloated, into sight, drowning out the weekend that was in a slow and treacly death. They’re uphill battles; they’re something to get through, not to succeed at. It’s neither your fault nor mine, and all we can do is tick the basic boxes and hope that Tuesday will come through with a bit more pizzazz.
Not this Monday, though, folks. Not today. Because today, we’re starting the week off with a bit of risky almost-nudity. A little game of fetch made more challenging because you’re not sure if you can actually see the ball. A touch of shamelessness. A soupçon of buttcrack. Is that a carrot in Aussie eventer Shane Rose’s pocket, or is he just happy to see us? Well, look, there’s no pockets on that mankini, so I think we can settle the matter quite definitively.
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I hear that this brazen bit of Boratesqueness was done in honour of a vet; truly, I think you could tell me any story here and I’d believe it, though, because I’m too caught up in trying to work out the biomechanics of jumping fences with one’s bits and pieces on the move. You can read more sensible analysis over at An Eventful Life (behind a paywall, alas, but I suspect worth it). And now, go forth and conquer your Monday, friends. It’s one you can win, I reckon.
National Holiday: It’s National Darwin Day. Not to be confused, of course, with The Darwin Awards, that tongue-in-cheek celebration of all the persistently silly ways one might remove oneself from the evolutionary timeline, but try not to do anything too dumb today anyway, lest it get worked into your obit, regrettably.
U.S. Weekend Action:
Your Monday Reading List:
Eventers who frequent competition’s in Britain’s west/southwest region have a new prize to aim for this year. Offered in memory of talented young rider Archie Lowe, who tragically died in 2021 after a rotational fall, the West Wilts Championship will go to the owner/rider who amasses the most points across West Wilts’s three BE fixtures this year, at any level. The prize is a cheeky £1000, which will no doubt help its winner nail down some extra training or a few more competitions en route to hitting their season goals. The aim of the championship, and the Archie Life Foundation, is to provide support to those riders who may not have all the means in the world, but who truly love being a part of the sport. You can find out more about them both, and about Archie’s legacy, here.
Got a horse on stall rest? I mean, first of all, what a way to start your 2024 out. Ugh. I feel for you, and your horse! Now, though, I’m sure your primary focus isn’t on wallowing in self-pity, but rather, making sure that that four-legged angel of yours doesn’t become the devil while cooped up. Here’s a great guide to keeping him safe, happy, and stress-free, as much as is possible when such a major routine change comes around, anyway.
This time of year feels like such a money drain. Energy prices are on the up and up, hay is more expensive, and for me, at least, as a self-employed person I need to hustle twice as hard to make the numbers work as I do during the eventing season. Something that’s quite helpful? The odd money-saving life hack. Here’s some to try – and if you’ve got one that’s not on this list, do your fellow skint equestrians a solid and drop it in the comments.
Planning a bit of a jump this week, but not sure what you actually want to work on? Instead of just popping over whatever happens to be in the ring, how about setting up some gymnastic exercises that’ll help you nail down a few fundamental skills? Here’s some to try from British eventing legend Mary King – and the bonus of it all is that moving all those poles and wings is basically your gym session for the day, too. Boom. Smashed it.
You know what sounds like a nice thing to do today? Winning an Advanced. Okay, okay, it might take a lot of effort, a horse I, for one, don’t have, and a few MERs I will never have, but how about doing it vicariously, instead?