October 26, 2012

My Kid The Mutton Buster

I can't believe I'm missing seeing the OG dadbloggin' crew at Dad2Summit's Dove-in today. But we've got family in town, three sets of contractors in the house [or, annoyingly, disappearing for days on end], and a parent-teacher conference in tiny little chairs, so.

On the bright side, last night was Barn Night at the Washington International Horse Show. Which definitely has its moments where. Yes. Exactly what you'd expect. But at least it's not as thick as the Hamptons Classic which, well, anyway.

I tried to explain to the kid why one of the amateur junior jumpers in the competition had LLC after her name, and how tax deductions and loss carry forwards work, but it all just boils down to the same thing: kid, you have chosen to fall in love with one of the most expensive sports around, and I secretly, silently hope you get it out of your system before the cost curve hockey stick hits. And I'm ambivalent about the culture surrounding it, but I guess it's on us to make sure you don't become blinkered, overentitled, and-- whoa, anyway.

The bright side, again, and no worries, because the horse show also has moments where it's completely not, because hello, it's NOT the Hamptons; it's in the Verizon Center, and it's ringed with extortionate concession stands and people selling the tackiest horsey set drag queen outfits you could ever imagine. Also they have mutton bustin' during halftime.

Which the kid did this year. Honestly, I was so psyched watching it, I didn't realize until she'd hit the dirt that I'd forgotten to actually turn the camera to follow her 3-second ride.

Some mutton bustin' takeaways:
The prime age for mutton bustin' is 4-6yo. Older is fine, but at 3yo, kids just don't understand how to grab onto that sheep for dear life.
The kid says the most important thing is to just hold on as tight as you can in the chute.
Even last night, among the 16 kids who busted, easily half didn't make it more than a sheep's length out of the chute. Which tells me they were caught completely off guard about how tightly they needed to hold on.
Hold on with your legs, not just your arms.
A few kids lost it, and were crying when the cowboy pulled them up by the armholes of their protective vests, which also speaks, I think, to their not knowing what to expect. To her credit, when she hopped up with her helmet grille full of dirt, the kid had this bemused smile on her face as she moseyed out of the ring. I could not be prouder.

1 Comment

mutton bustin' is hilarious. nothing quite like watching kids do that. i got awesome seats to the San Antonio Rodea this year and watching that and the calf scramble had me laughing to tears. the kid that won was a tiny little 6 y.o. girl. awesome.

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