Monday, May 02, 2005

Yee Haw and a Return to the Real World

My 3 decade year old body is aching. It all started with a last-minute road trip to Etna CA for the rodeo. I had never been to a rodeo before, so how could I pass up the opportunity to wear the cowboy hat I purchased in Texas on my way across the country last November? I learned a few new words:
1. Mutton Busting - this is when kids as young as three years old grab onto the back of a sheep and ride him until they are bucked off into the dirt. These kids have balls.
2. Saddle Cow - here's where an adult puts a saddle on a cow, rides it until bucked off, and then he and a partner must grab the saddle off the cow and run it back into the shoot.
3. Rescue Ride - one person riding bareback must ride up to a partner standing at the other end of the arena. The rider must then hoist the partner onto the back of the horse and both ride bareback to the other end of the arena. This looked painful for everyone's back.
4. Team Rope - one guy on horseback must rope the horns of a calf while the other guy on horseback must rope the hind legs of the same calf. WHILE CALF IS RUNNING. How the hell they did it, I don't know.

Of course, there were Bull Riders. Only 1 out of 14 bull riders stayed on for 8 seconds. He got a score of 74. I heard all about the only perfect score (100) in bull riding, and somebody I met up there in Etna is sending me footage of it so I can see what a perfect ride looks like. My favorite event was the Wild Bronc Riding. This event was done first with a saddle and then bareback. The riders had to keep their legs above the horse's shoulders when they left the shoot, so three limbs are a-flying the entire time.

I was definitely born in the wrong part of the country or the wrong era. I loved the entire scene. Add some fine cowboys, a town dance, a parade, and three nights of hard-core drinking and darts and it added up to a good ol' time! The only suck-ass part was arriving home at 5am this morning only to have to report to my first day at the new job at 9am. Sleep now......



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