Poke Out My Eyes I Have Seen It All Now


Sunday, April 4, 2010

Riding Season

Here's Carmelle, my newish mare. I bought her from the same people, Gordy and Diane, who sold me Star, the wonder horse, over 10 years ago.

After my drill mare Taxi went lame last summer, I was on the lookout for a new horse. Star was 25 at the time and although still certainly capable of reasonable trail rides, he wasn't up for the whole Missouri adventure anymore. Diane had told me earlier in the summer that she had this mare "Brownie" that they had repossessed because the boarders hadn't paid board for, oh, 3 years. She wanted me to come out and ride Brownie, and I had ridden her a couple of times which was rather brave of me, being that the mare had only been ridden maybe 5 times in the previous 3 years. She did ok.

So I'm on my horse search and one day I was out at Diane's place, actually with my buddy Kim who was also looking for a horse and had just ridden another one of Diane's mares. We were walking back up to the barn and all of a sudden I took a good look at Brownie and thought wtf, why am I looking for a horse when there's a perfectly good one right here? I bought her within a couple of weeks and took her to Missouri. She was overall very good, just a couple of shenanigans. Best part: she's mighty easy on the eyes. Brownie is not a name for a pretty mare, so it's Carmelle. Accent on the last syllable, please.

This spring, after not having ridden her for 5 months, I brought her out and tacked her up. Katie was at the house and I mentioned that perhaps Katie would enjoy riding Carmelle first. Kate just looked at me, didn't really say yes or no. And then another brave moment: I decided what the hell and got on the mare myself. She was just a little pissy, nothing at all major. Yeah for the old lady!

We've been working on a few fine points, difficult maneuvers such as backing up. This was a newish concept, one that Carmelle was sure involved throwing her head up and tossing it around while she braced. She's now gotten to the point that she stops when I sit down, and backs up nicely when I lift the reins and touch her in front of the girth. Praising seems to work well with this mare. We're working on side-passing. Thus far, Carmelle has only advanced to the leaning stage. At least she's leaning in the right direction.

Star is 26 now and getting to be an old man. For the first time ever, he was laying down today with the other horses. I almost had a heart attack and ran in there to be sure he was ok. He has seriously never laid down in the 10+ years that I've had him or the 5 previous years at Diane's house. But he was fine. A little pissed at being roused, but fine. I have mixed feelings about his laying down. On the one hand, I'm pretty happy for him that he's maybe going to be able to actually take a nap. As long as I've known him, he falls asleep so soundly standing up that he generally falls over onto his knees and sometimes his face. On the other hand, it makes me sad. He's getting old.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Blessing or Curse

Ooops. My failing memory again. Not remembering is quite often a good thing. I've discovered that the less I remember, the happier I generally am these days. Luckily, I've always had a tendency to forget bad things. It's always startling when a friend or family member will remind me of something really rather awful from my past. "Huh. Now that you mention it, that DID suck." More luck: avoidance is my friend, and my mind just skitters away from bad things.

Not remembering is quite often a bad thing. Pay those bills? Ooops, forgot about that. One time I forgot I took my car to work and hailed a taxi to get home. Husband was rather not amused by that one. I thought it was kind of funny.

I'd completely forgotten that I had this blog thingy. Now I've remembered. But I can't think of anything witty or intelligent to post, so you're going to have to suck it up and live with this meager offering. At least the little animal is cute.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

All!! Star!! Wrestling!!

The news about Verne Gagne, Mr. Wrestling, doing a biel throw to a 90+ year old co-resident of his nursing home, just breaks my heart. Verne, in case you didn't know, has Alzheimers and must have thought he was back in the ring with Baron Von Roshke. The poor old geezer on the receiving end died, though not immediately. There is talk about charges being filed, but I'm quite sure that won't happen as Verne isn't in charge of his faculties. He apparently hasn't lost much in terms of physical prowess, however.

I grew up with All Star Wrestling, watching it with my grampa. Grampa always got quite the work out during those 1-hour matches on television. He'd sit in his rocking chair and go through the moves along with his favorites. Much grunting accompanied his feigned grappling holds and illegal punches as he watched his favorites: The Crusher and Verne Gagne. I got as much enjoyment watching grampa as I did watching the actual "wrastlin".

Grama generally made an appearance every 10 minutes or so. She'd come out of the kitchen with her butcher knife (I swear she used it for everything including making jello) and would brandish it at the television screen, shouting obscenities at the bad guys. She always had a few moves to exhibit too, between "Get that Russian bastard!" and "I'll slit his throat!".

Grampa took me to a real live wrestling match one time at Falls Senior High School. There it was, the actual ring, right in the gymnasium. Vince McMahon was just a young guy at the time, but already in full swing as a promoter. The Crusher and the Bruiser (who were maybe the same guy, they had the same build!) were the good guys. Dr. X pulled his usual cheating routine with a tire iron hidden (!) under the ring skirting. Why couldn't the referee hear us shouting about that?? Baron Von Rushke pulled out The Claw and was victorious in his bout.

Of course, Verne Gagne was the hero of the night with his Figure Four Leglock. That was his patented move and it was so good of his opponent to lay quite still while Verne applied it and then cranked up the pressure until submission. Cheers all around. I was hoarse by the time the night was over, and grampa damn near had a stroke.

I've tried to watch wrestling a few times recently, but it's too much glitz now and most of the wrestlers look like pansy-ass rock stars rather than the brawny beasts of my past. Nowadays I have to settle for MMA and toughman competitions, but it's not nearly as thrilling as old time wrasslin.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Rip off my ears, I have heard it all now.

Well, I'm on a roll. Now that I started noticing how many stupid phrases are overused ad nauseum by people trying to sound hip, innovative or smarter than they actually are, I can't stop. A few from this weekend that just irked me to no end, and most of which I realize I hear all the freaking time.

Hut! Hut! Hike! It's time to play SMASH MOUTH football!! (The Combine was this weekend. Hours and hours and hours of Combine. If your husband is anything like mine, you are well acquainted with the NFL network, and Mike and Mike are your TV boyfriends). These commentators should be smashed in the mouth for the overuse of this stupid phrase.

I HAVE A FULL PLATE. Really? Well, scoop some onto mine, I'm hungry. Is it impossible to say that you're just really busy?

Have you noticed that when someone wants to sell you a gigantic load of crap, they start spouting off about a PARADIGM SHIFT? I'm sorry, but I'm old and cranky. Did I mention old? That means that anything you come up with is not new, it's not a paradigm shift, it's just an overly complicated way of doing the same old shit.

AT THE END OF THE DAY. I wish it really was the end of the day. Then you would go home and shut up.

Have you ever noticed that only the most condescending people use the term EMPOWERMENT in relation to other groups of people? You cannot empower anyone unless you are a god. So shut up.

A movement we really have to keep an eye out for is this WELLNESS movement. These are the lifestyle police folks. They are (as usual) condescending, superior, snobby, do-gooder asses. In the olden days, we used to call them busybodies. It's really the busybody movement.

DOWNSIZING. Congratulations! You're fired!

It's kind of difficult to talk about something being NEXT GENERATION when the last generation was only 3 months ago. Shut up.

If anything is described to you as a SEAMLESS transition, you can bet the farm that it's going to definitely be a clusterfuck.

BROMANCE. What the hell. It's either your guy friend, or you are gay and don't know it. Figure it out, already.

STRATEGIC. Everything these days is strategic. A strategic move, a strategic partnership, a strategic transition to a collaborative effort toward empowerment. Really. Shut. Up.

My blood pressure is just about high enough now.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Catch-phrases and the stupid people who use them

I've just about had it with catch-phrases, euphemisms, and stupid ways of saying simple things. Why is it that the higher up the corporate ladder, the more difficult it becomes to just SAY THINGS NORMALLY?

There are so many to choose from, some old, some new. A few on my current and on-going hit list include:

SHARING. "I want to share something with you." Well you damn well better have a cookie in your pocket. Otherwise, shut up and go blather to someone else.

Here's an oldie but a goldie: CAREFRONTATION. Because I want to say something really rather rude to you, but I figure you're stupid so if I pretend I give a shit while I'm saying it, you might actually thank me when I finally shut up.

For that matter, CONFRONT. Why does everyone think they need to "confront" someone about everything. I guess just talking won't cut it.

OUTSIDE THE BOX. "Old Roy over there in corporate, man, he's really thinking outside the box". Anyone who uses this lame phrase should just shut up. Because it's not in the least innovative or creative.

Here's a new one: ONBOARD. People don't get hired anymore, did you realize this? Nope. They get onboarded. Can I get a ticket to Mexico during the onboarding process? No? Then shut up.

SUMMIT. It's a stupid, boring meeting. Shut up.

BEST PRACTICES. I'm beginning to think that perhaps 10% of the people who use this phrase might have a remote idea of what it actually means. The other 90% are talking about policies (good or bad), or are simply applying the phrase to whatever it is that THEY are doing. Shut up if you don't understand what it means.

ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT. You are a secretary. I was a secretary, a pretty good secretary at that. But I was smart enough to know that getting the new title of Administrative Assistant was in lieu of a damn pay increase.

STAYCATION. How sweet. You're too damn broke to leave town.

ACTION ITEMS. This used to be called the to-do list. Nice and simple, shit you have to do. We peons still have to-do lists; corporate has an action list.

PUSH BACK. Christ on a rope. You're just disagreeing! I'd suggest you duck if you start with any actual pushing around me.

WINDSHIELD TIME. What the hell? It's driving in your car. It's the time you spend driving to the stupid summits to hear about onboarding. Shut up.

Friday, January 30, 2009

ChaCha the Boston Terrier

The interwebz, it haz me.

Explain to me, please, why I feel actual emotion when I play PetPupz and "stroke" or "fuss" a puppy described as "completely unloved", that hasn't been "fed" and is at zero, and is "starving".

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Life with Ron

Well I was up until after 2 a.m. (long story involving a friend in the hospital and his son who is staying with us for a few days as a result). Went to bed, finally fell asleep.

Back story: earlier in the evening, like right when I got home from work, I saw Three with his head OVER the electric tape, munching on some hay on the other side. Yes indeedy, his neck was right on the tape and obviously no shocking going on there. Husband came home right after and I said "you have to get that electric fixed tonight when you feed or the horses will be out". You all know where this is going. Husband went and fed horses (his turn) and I asked him if he got the electricity going over there and he said everything was "fine".

So at 4:30 a.m. (Ron gets up at 4 a.m. and had been in bed since 10 p.m., as opposed to ME, waiting for really, HIS friend's son to get here and then entertaining the young man with lively chat until 2 freaking o'clock in the morning), Ron is thumping up the stairs to the bedroom "Laurie! Laurie! The horses are out!". Me, groggy from sleep, "Wah?" Him: "ALL the horses are out".

We have the horses in 3 separate pastures/paddocks and so of course I'm imaging all 8 horses wandering. Mind you, husband was already up, but somehow or other I managed to
a) get on sweats and get downstairs
b) toss on the snowmobile suit and boots
c) get outside and call to the 3 (not 8 ) horses who were wandering around in the yard, less than 100 feet from being out on the county freaking highway in the pitch dark
d) get all three to follow me into the barn and put in stalls
e) get the remaining horse from the pasture into the barn (he hadn't left the paddock, the electric tape was on the ground and he wouldn't cross it) and
f) have a very lengthy swearing fit in the barn at the top of my lungs.

I have no idea where husband was as it was after all this (admittedly, I'm quick and it took about 10 minutes) that he showed up in the barn, "Are they all in?"

Now I'm wide awake but kind of shaky from adrenaline and pissed-offed-ness. Apparently by "fine" Ron meant that he had done nothing with that fence and had instead determined that said horses would simply not go through. It was just late this fall that all 4 of these horses were out during the day when we were at work and WERE on the highway and there were so many cops in our yard trying to get them back in that it looked like a meth bust here. That time husband had left the freaking gate open.

Seriously, I apparently have to feed the horses myself morning and night as husband is a dunce. We've had horses for years and years. Now I'll be up peering out the window multiple times each night thinking that I heard hoofbeats on the driveway. And obviously I'll have to get the electric going as husband just hung the tape back up in that area and thinks it's again, "fine".

Don't get me wrong, he's a good guy and all that but jesus on a rope. We've been married 30+ years and I'm telling you, I can't do a thing with him in this regard. Thank you for listening. My heart rate is nearly back to normal now.

(edit for angry typos)