Among all the parts of the code of the west us ranch horses stick to is the part that says real simple – and if any of y’all are offended by my occasional forays into speakin french, you’re likely about to become offended again presently, but it needs to be plainly said – ya don’t shit where ya eat. Pardon my french and all. But on the County Island, a lotta horses do.
The Coors brothers confound me at times, much as they really ain’t all that bad to hang around a corral with, shootin the breeze and swishin flies. They ain’t even bad compadres on the trail, to tell the truth. They’re what passes for my herd these days and it could be entirely worse. We were brought up different is all, meanin I was brought up the right way and they wasn’t. Especially Coors Light. Sometimes I think it’s on account of the excessive prancification of his youth and all the danged “dressage.”
Me and Coors Light was both in the stall jail lockup, me for my customary bad hawks and him for a busted suspendery in his front leg (which since ain’t busted no more). When you’re in the lockup, there’s a lotta time for a ponderin-prone horse to ponder, as well as for ear-pinnin, rail-rubbin with your own front teeth, and such. But whenever I found myself needin to take care of business, so to speak, I went to the back of my stall and left all my business there so as not to disturb all the soft fluffy wood shavins that the bucket gal done fluffed up so nice for us to lay down and sleep in. The only thing nicer than fluffy warm wood shavins is fluffy warm sand to sleep in in the sunshine. Fluffy wood shavins is obviously a peculiar, and also real nice, County Island thing, ‘cause I there was no such thing at the ranch. Like all County Island things, even the pointless ones, I’m grateful for the fluffy warm wood shavins.
I wasn’t tryin to notice, but when you’re cellmates, I suppose you can’t help but notice. Coors Light, who’s also a tiny bit of a pointless stall walker in circles, like he didn’t have to ride around in enough tiny circles all his life in the first place, would just lift his Ayrab tail right up, or stretch his legs out in place, and go — right next to his water bucket, sometimes in his water bucket, next to his hay rack, under his hay rack right on top of the hay he drops on the ground… In short, disgustin behavior for a horse. And then he’d walk in another circle, and stir it all up into the clean fluffy warm wood shavins until they was all mixed up with — here comes some more french — piss and shit. Yeah, hard words for a hard situation. And then he’d lay down for his nap in the middle of it, and come up lookin greener than the grass in springtime instead of grey, which he is. Y’all can kindly insert a whole lot more french here, which I mostly expressed by way of layin my ears back and shootin dirty looks to Coors Light through the rails.
And the bucket gal would come with her rolly-wheel barrow and her applepicker, and spend most of her time pickin his stall, huntin for horse-apples underneath the wet, green shavins, whereas pickin my own horse-jail stall took but a minute of people-time that’s better spent preparin buckets and hay for horses. And while I got barely a curry and a pat for bein such a good, clean horse with proper manners, Coors Light got frowned at and fussed over for a real long time to try to turn his green spots grey again, which mostly made him more entirely yellow on account of it was too cold and he’s too prissy for a ice-water sham poo bath, which made the bucket gal scrub him harder with her brushes, which made Coors Light downright smug.
If a horse was gonna set out to try to make a person do his own horse-biddin, which I don’t generally recommend unless there’s food involved and then only under select circumstances which a wise ranch horse will know when he sees ‘em, especially if there’s alfalfa in it, I would say a horse should tread lightly, not tread his entire bounty of fluffy warm wood shavins into muck. What’s the point of muckin up yourself in the process?
All of us County Island horses, and yeah, I guess I’m includin myself in your ranks since here I am, just appreciate what ya got a bit more. No person owes ya any fluffy warm wood shavins, nor much of anythin else – not even your bucket! Yeah, always appreciate your bucket, too. There’s horses that don’t never get buckets, nor carrots nor cookies. I was one of ‘em. That’s it, I reckon… Guess I needed to get it off my chest as bad as a big bitin horsefly. And I’ll keep tryin to impress it upon Coors Light, and Coors, too. Sometimes the best way to make an impression is with a well-timed bite or kick, though.
So that’s my new part to the ranch horse code which I wish to impart — Don’t muck up a god thing when ya got it. French obviously implied.