This post was originally written in October, 2004 in response to a meme about horses.
"A horse! a horse! my kingdom for a horse!"
1) Have you ever ridden a horse?
1959. I was 14 years old, and an introverted, unathletic high school freshman. My extroverted, athletic friend (the one in the yellow prom dress) talked me into joining the Girl's Athletic Association (GAA).
Why? Because if we acquired 15 athletic points we earned a ticket to the GAA formal dance and we - the girls - got to ask the boy of our choice to escort us.
Unfortunately, earning GAA points required doing athletic things.
Horseback riding was on the GAA list. My friend lived on a dairy farm and had horses. She assured me that three hours on a horse for three GAA points was "no sweat".
I had never ridden a horse before. She'd been riding horses since she was old enough to sit up, so it didn't occur to her teenage brain that I might need a few pointers. I got on that horse and before I could ask what to do next, the horse took off and jumped the fence.
I didn't fall off. She was a little more helpful after I threatened to go home, and we managed to ride for three hours. The next day I was so sore I could hardly walk. Not a good thing, because I had marching band practice.
I was too stiff to raise my knees when marching 8 to 5 (eight steps to 5 yards), so the band instructor pulled me out of formation and yelled at me for having a "tight skirt". He never did let me explain. The skirt was not tight. Stupid man.
It was all worth it, though. That's me in the purple formal. I picked a good looking date, didn't I?
2) What is your favorite horse story or movie?
"A horse is a horse of course, of course.While Googling for the words to Mr. Ed's theme song, I found Mr. Ed Online, an entire web site dedicated to information on Mr. Ed, the talking horse from 1960's television.
And no-one can talk to a horse of course
That is of course unless the horse is the famous Mister Ed.
Go right to the source and ask the horse
He'll give you the answer that you endorse.
He's always on a standing course
Talk to Mister Ed!"
The diverse interests of the human population never cease to amaze me.
2009 Note: Mr. Ed Online is no longer online.
3) If you had the means, would you own a horse?
Yes, for Granddaughter Kimmy. She loves horses. She has gone to riding camp for the past two summers. This past summer she earned her "trotting" certificate.
4) Do you think it would be neat if we went back to everyone traveling by horse and buggy or just an inconvenience?
Is this a serious question?
It wouldn't be "just an inconvenience". It would be a major inconvenience and a complete change in lifestyle.
My body is too old to be thrown around in a horse and buggy. I would never leave home.
5) Have you ever ridden in a hansom cab?
No, but it sounds very romantic.