People got a sayin about how they need to go around buildin a better mouse trap all the time. Those are nonsense words to a horse, even a horse such as me. Seems to me they need to build better pesty pack rat traps, if there’s any kind of trap they need to improve upon, based on my own observations of the pack rat population in our very own hay shed. Mostly I think the trap gathers dust, while the pack rats gather everythin that ain’t nailed down.
But the point is, County Island people are always improvin upon things that don’t need a lick of improvement, mostly on account of County Island people ain’t got real jobs with real ranch work to tend to. So, they go around makin more work for everybody and everyhorse, so they can call a pointless thing a job well done and improve stuff – and call the thing “a better mouse trap,” if y’all will allow me to use my ironical horse ears to quote it…
My green bucket was a fine bucket.
It was my bucket – the one I got when I first came to live on the County Island. It shined a brilliant green, like sweet fresh grass after a big rain, and the bucket gal wrote my very own name upon it in big ol’ tall people-letters, back when she was just “the gal” to me and I reckoned she seemed nice and sincere and all, but I’d likely be on my way to someplace else without her soon, so best not to get too attached. That was also back when I had no knowledge of the importance of a bucket, and what goes inside it, to a horse.
But last night, the bucket gal took my bucket away, and never brought it back. In fact, all our buckets disappeared.
Coors Light’s banged-up green bucket, with the handle half tore off, went away, and in its place appeared a shiny bright blue kinda square bucket thing, stuck on the fence rail.
Original Coors’ sun-faded green bucket, with all his years of carefully caked-on bits of feed that no amount of forceful water-spray from the hose-sprayer could budge, on account of he’d smeared it on so good, went away, too, and in its place appeared a shiny bright green kinda square bucket thing stuck on the fence rail.
And my own green bucket – the first bucket I’d ever had in my entire horse-life – went away.
It was a good bucket.
It was green, and it had two decent cracks in it, one at the top that never bothered anybody, and one at the bottom of it, which often leaked out some of my feed. But that was a good thing, ‘cause the rabbits would hop on over and help themselves to whatever leaked down upon them, and it didn’t leak enough for me to miss the leaked parts. I’m a horse who’ll share, a bit. That’s how I met the bucket bunny to start with, who was the great-great-great etc. grand-bunny-dam to all the generations of bucket bunnies that’ve hopped forth since.
So, y’all know what appeared? A shiny bright yella kinda square bucket thing, stuck on the fence rail. It was different, and by different a horse generally means wrong, and it didn’t smell the same, but, well, it still had all my feed in it. That was the important part. The bucket gal told us that we was to be “color coordinated” from now on, and she said it like it was a good thing. I tried my best not to get all prancey about the change, inside my own horse-thoughts.
But the yella square bucket seemed impossible to fling around. Coors and Coors Light were havin a hell of a time, pardon my french, dislodging theirs to turn ‘em over and lick out all the best parts of their feed. It was like we was bein forced not to fling our buckets about like we liked to do, like on purpose, or somethin.
I like to flip my bucket around when I eat, so as to more efficiently get all the tiniest bits into my mouth. I got a number of what’s called advanced techniques I invented, such as bucket under the rail, bucket flipped onto the fence post, bucket sideways up against the wall, bucket banged and scraped against the wall, and so forth. With the new square yella fence bucket, all my techniques was, to borrow one of the Coors’ California words, “toast.”
That’s when I recalled how much County Island people enjoy buildin better mouse traps.
I bet myself I could make a mouse trap, which is to say, an improvement, out of my new square yella bucket, if I applied myself.
And so, I banged it, and I banged it, and I banged it some more. And the claw parts of it that were clawed onto the fence rail started to get loose, after a considerable long time of persistent bangin. I learned patience and persistence back at the ranch, y’know. What works for cattle and cowboys will work for most everythin.
Finally, I got ‘er done.
I greatly improved my new bucket. I’d done went and built myself a better mouse trap.
Now I could chow down with my nose closer to the ground, and I was free to kick at it if I wanted to, or turn it upside down, or sideways, or any which way I felt like it to properly clean out every morsel of feed.
My bucket. My rules.
Until my mouse trap done got trapped, itself.
It’s all fun and games ‘til somebody breaks out the stud chain, ain’t it?
Seems the mouse out-trapped me, this time.