Sunday, February 26, 2012

February 26 (I got nuthin for a title)

Babysit the kid yesterday. Brought along a horse DVD in the hopes of corrupting her since her mother is terrified of horses. No luck; she wanted to watch Elmo. I was told she could only have water or milk since she was experiencing diaper rash and they were afraid fruit juice might aggravate it. At one point I had the fridge door open and she latched onto some apple juice. I took it away, blaming grandma. I must have a cruel soul - her tears didn't bother me at all. Pretty soon we were back to chasing each other and shrieking at the top of our lungs. Good times.

I ordered a four tier free standing shelving unit for my locker at the stable. It is 25" wide and I found out the locker is only 24" (always measure after you place an order) Oh well, if I can't force it in there I can always use it at home. Unfortunately, this purchase apparently caused a Home Depot employee to attempt fraudulent use of my credit card as I received notice the following day that my credit card had been canceled and a replacement one issued. Now I'll have to memorize a new number, drat.

I was helping to move horses into the barn on Friday and had a slight mishap. I put a halter on one of the ponies and left the stall door open a bit when I went to retrieve my lead rope. He took the opportunity to kick his way out. Crap. Nothing like hearing, "Loose horse" throughout the barn. Fortunately he didn't get more than a few feet until someone caught him and I got the lead rope attached.

I got to ride the mare, who had pinned her ears back when I called out to her when I first got there - great. We had a pretty good lesson but not exceptional. I'm curious who I'll get to ride tomorrow. My cronies were excited to hear I'd ridden the gelding on Monday and wanted to know how it went. Others who've ridden him claim to have had the same steering issues as me.

Anchorage is supposedly due for another four to seven inches of snow. Guess I'll get my grocery shopping done before the storm starts.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Husband Store

A store that sells new husbands has opened in New York City , where a woman may go to choose a husband. Among the instructions at the entrance is a description of how the store operates:

You may visit this store ONLY ONCE! There are six floors and the value of the products increase as the shopper ascends the flights. The shopper may choose any item from a particular floor, or may choose to go up to the next floor, but you cannot go back down except to exit the building!

So, a woman goes to the Husband Store to find a husband. On the first floor the sign on the door reads:

Floor 1 - These men Have Jobs.

She is intrigued, but continues to the second floor, where the sign reads:

Floor 2 - These men Have Jobs and Love Kids.

'That's nice,' she thinks, 'but I want more.' So she continues upward. The third floor sign reads:

Floor 3 - These men Have Jobs, Love Kids, and are Extremely Good Looking.

'Wow,' she thinks, but feels compelled to keep going. She goes to the fourth floor and the sign reads:

Floor 4 - These men Have Jobs, Love Kids, are Drop-dead Good Looking and Help With Housework.

'Oh, mercy me!' she exclaims, 'I can hardly stand it!' Still, she goes to the fifth floor and the sign reads:

Floor 5 - These men Have Jobs, Love Kids, are Drop-dead Gorgeous, Help with Housework, and Have a Strong Romantic Streak.

She is so tempted to stay, but she goes to the sixth floor, where the sign reads:

Floor 6 - You are visitor 31,456,012 to this floor. There are no men on this floor. This floor exists solely as proof that women are impossible to please. Thank you for shopping at the Husband Store.


To avoid gender bias charges, the store's owner opened a New Wives Store just across the street.

The first floor has wives that love sex.

The second floor has wives that love sex and have money and like beer.

The third, fourth, fifth and sixth floors have never been visited.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

This is Progress?

Last Friday's lesson was fabulous so I shouldn't have been shocked when I showed up at the barn yesterday and was told I would be riding a different horse. Ack! I've finally made enough progress to ride one of the more advanced lesson horses. Despite my whining and protests (I am nothing if not vocal) I agreed to have a lesson on this gelding. It was like riding an entirely different creature. I had a terrible time keeping him in a straight line and more than once we ended up going in a circle because I was giving the wrong cues. I basically just forgot everything - my heels were up, my hands were too high and I kept twisting and/or leaning my body. I was dripping with sweat and we never went beyond a walk. I have so much respect for the other ladies who I have seen ride him who don't seem to have these directional challenges. It didn't help that yesterday was a holiday so there were more people at the barn than usual to witness my performance; many of them youngsters who ride far better than I do and probably think I'm a idiot. Any perception that I might know more than them due to my advanced age was completely shattered. Actually that perception was probably wishful thinking on my part and they've known from day one that I am a newbie extraordinaire.

This horse demands total attention to detail. At one point I was distracted because it looked like the two barn cats were going to start fighting. The horse took this opportunity to meander off the track onto the quarter line. This is bad enough but my inability to get him back on the track was so frustrating. I tend to start using the reins when what he requires is correct leg and body cues. I am so grateful for patient trainers with positive feedback. I am both dreading and anticipating my next lesson to see if I'll be assigned him again or back to my usual mare who gives me the illusion that I know what I'm doing.

There was a barn show on Sunday and it was so much fun watching the competitions. A couple of the teens were jumping three foot fences. In fact, the horse I rode yesterday was ridden in some of the less advanced jumping classes. What a comedown for him to go from that to me. Have you ever seen resignation on a horse's face? That's the look he was giving me. Fortunately, I am the carrot queen so a lot is forgiven.

I discovered chai tea. Just what I need, another food craving.

Monday, February 13, 2012

So I Went

And it was okay. I chatted with one of the wives who really didn't know a lot of the people there and she mentioned how the room reminded her of a church basement. She hoped her memorial will be held in a prettier location. I told her of my desire to have my ashes exploded in a fireworks display. Whoever goes first will do their best to see that the other's wishes are upheld. My husband reassured me that he was well aware of my desire and promised to see it fulfilled if I die before him.

Apparently this man didn't have a will so his estate will be in probate. What a pain for his out of state relatives. The heat and electricity will have to remain turned on and someone pointed out that when the house finally can be sold, the fact that there was a suicide in it will have to be disclosed. No one knows why he decided to end his life.

We heard a thunk last night and assumed some snow had fallen off the roof. Later when my husband was letting the dogs out he looked around to see if he could locate what had caused the noise. We have a raised deck and you can see one side of the house from one end of it. There was a young moose curled up next to the house in what I can laughingly call one of my flower beds. We had never seen one laying so close to a dwelling and wondered if it was sick or injured. It was gone a couple of hours later so we're hoping it is okay. All the deep snow is hard on moose, especially the young ones.

Sunday, February 12, 2012


A man that worked where I used to (too large an employer to really consider a co-worker) committed suicide the week before last. We were acquaintances and I always enjoyed talking to him and even went so far as to buy him something that reminded me of him once and bake him a birthday cake another time. He was a single guy, kind of quirky, and I admit other than asking about him when I met with friends, really didn't think about him. I still am very saddened at this news and hope he didn't die thinking no one cared about him.

There is going to be a memorial potluck for him this evening. I can't decide if I want to attend or not. I know some of the people who will be there and I'm sure there will be others I've never met. That's not really my problem. I just have a deep and abiding hate for potlucks. Why can't people get together without making a party out of it? Maybe I'll just bring a big old box of wine and we can all get drunk and reminisce.

This is supposedly an occasion to meet his sister and niece. Prior to his death the sister didn't know where he worked and was surprised to see how much he looked like their father. Obviously not a close-knit family. Should I participate in what might be considered a farce?

I know deep down I don't want to go so probably won't. We'll see. Guilt may yet inspire me; I find it's my greatest motivator. I always hoped that when I became an adult I wouldn't have to do stuff I didn't want to. How is it now, more than ever, I'm forced into unwanted situations?

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Financial Planning

Dan was a single guy living at home with his father and working in the family business. When he found out he was going to inherit a fortune after his cancer stricken father died, he decided he needed to find a wife with whom to share his fortune.

One evening, at an investment meeting, he spotted the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. Her natural beauty took his breath away. "I may look like just an ordinary guy," he said to her, "But in just a few years my father will die and I will inherit $200 million."

Impressed, the woman asked for his business card and three days later, she became his stepmother.

Women are so much better at financial planning than men.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Spring Fever

It got up to the mid-20's yesterday. Just as I got out of my truck at the barn, a sheet of ice about six feet in length fell crashing from the roof. My truck wasn't hit but I'll remember to park farther away for the next few weeks.

The warmer weather and longer hours of daylight are making the horses feel spunky (or "fresh" as I've heard one woman refer to it). "My" mare and a six year old gelding were waging war with each other as I was getting ready for my lesson. He was in a stall next to where I had her in cross ties and just couldn't keep his nose to himself. He kept poking me whenever I was within reach also. Darn kids.

Had a really, really good lesson. I worked on crossing the diagonal with loose reins then picking them up and trotting as I reached the (what in the heck is the outer edge of the arena called? - brain fart)* Anyways, I guess it's part of an actual dressage test. I suppose competing should be in my future but I can't fathom wearing light colored breeches (shudder)

So, since I was doing so well I got to canter at the end. And (and!) I actually kind of did it right. At least I stayed upright. I have a tendency to lean forward like I'm a jockey or something. I'm only allowed to canter on the straight sides of the arena - something to do with a health/structural problem that the mare has.

I moved the mare to a different set of cross ties after the lesson and only had to deal with another mare giving me pitiful looks every time I gave a carrot to my mare. Geez, you'd think those horses were starved to death the way they beg. Not to mention the barn cats following me around (okay, okay, so I keep cat treats in my locker). I just like to hand out goodies and I could probably afford an extra lesson a month with what I spend for carrots. The horses all recognize me. I know it's only because I have food, but still it's kind of neat when they see me coming and run towards me instead of away. I've been asked to not hand feed some of the horses but to drop the carrots on the ground. Well, one of the fillies gets totally ticked off when I do that. She doesn't see me drop it no matter how hard I try so then pins back her ears and gives me a pissy face. But I do as I'm told since they're not my horses and I'm just happy to be trusted to be around them.

*I remembered. It's called the track.

Friday, February 3, 2012

That's What I Thought

What's Wrong With This Coupon?

If I get $5 off every $5 I spend, doesn't that mean I get my entire purchase for whatever amount is less than $5.00? I noted on Head in the Sand that I'm tired this morning - maybe my brain just isn't functioning yet.