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September 29, 2016

And They're Off!

Anyone who has spent a lifetime around horses and horse shows has some great stories to tell. Many of them involve odd circumstances under which they competed. 

Like the year I went to the American Royal in Kansas City. It was a multi-discipline show with a huge number of entries (my number was 1210 if that tells you anything) and a small number of arenas.

September 5, 2016

Lost In Translation

It took me a lot of years to figure out that the main reason a relationship with a horsey girl is challenging is because you, our non-horsey significant others, don’t understand us.

July 15, 2016

Jitterbug’s Textbook For Cross-Country Schooling

For most of my training career with this Human, I have pretty much run our cross-country courses solo. How else can you look at it, when she has yet to keep from fainting somewhere between the start box and finish flags?

At long last however, I’ve begun convincing her to keep her eyes open as I step gingerly over the 2” by 4”s and half-decayed straw bales we typically encounter in the starter division, and we’re beginning to school over new types of questions.

Questions that are actually, you know, questions.

July 8, 2016

Legends Of The Summer

This time of year, my thoughts often drift back to the days when I was a kid at summer camp. It was one of the best experiences of my life—a camp devoted to horseback riding where young girls immersed themselves in everything equine for eight solid weeks.

The names and faces of my fellow campers have faded over time. But the horses—those I remember. The memories of the four-legged legends that shaped my summers are as enduring as those hot, humid July and August afternoons.

June 10, 2016

Jitterbug's Guide To Starting Your Human In The Saddle

After many years of working with the same Human, I recently decided to expand my horizons by taking on a few beginner students. It gives me the chance to rest my over-worked bucking muscles and recalibrate my brain cells.

I find that working with children is considerably more rewarding than working with adults—they are both easier please than adults and easier to scare into submission when necessary. 

May 13, 2016

Spring Ahead, Fall Off

Let me establish one thing right away: I don’t fall off. It has nothing to do with my riding skills. I don’t fall off because falling off hurts, and I have an aversion to pain.

I don’t remember the last time I fell off. Literally. I don’t remember it because I hit my head and four hours of short-term memory blew out of my brain faster than my medal course plan at the in-gate.   

April 15, 2016

Just Stopping By The Barn

5:17 p.m. - Text from HorseGal1101: On way home. Just have to stop at barn & check on horses real quick

5:18 p.m. - Text from ImyourGuy: How long will U B?

5:18:30 p.m. -  Text from HorseGal1101: Not long. Call U on way home. (happy face emoji)

5:19 p.m. - Text From ImYourGuy: K. I’ll start dinner (spoon/fork/knife emoji)

5:20 p.m. - Twitter: HorseGal1101 has logged on

5:20:15 p.m. - Tweet from HorseGal1101:  Going to the barn to see my best girls! #happyplace #Ilovemares #whyiwork

February 26, 2016

A Public Service Announcement

And now, a public service announcement:

Competing in equestrian sports is inherently dangerous. In the challenging and sometimes frenzied environment of a busy horse show, there are a hundred ways to get hurt. 

I’m here to talk about one of them.

January 29, 2016

Who Needs Leg When You Have Winter?

Wish your hunter had more pep in his step? Want your jumper more animated during his flat warm-up? Ever long for your horse to move with the style and athleticism of a cream-of-the-crop dressage champion?

Get ready to have all of your wishes granted.

December 17, 2015

Horse Girl Gifting 101

I don’t know a man who doesn’t regard the Christmas holiday with dread. Whether it’s from pressure to find the perfect gift for a significant other or the tendency to wait until 6 p.m. on Dec. 24 to take action, shopping rates right above root-canal-sans-anesthetic on most men’s lists of things they want to do. 

Well, men, if you’re involved with a horse girl, I’ve got great news: We are incredibly easy to buy for.

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