Monday, February 16, 2009
No Business Like Show Business!
I have just renewed all the memberships required to show in dressage in my little Mr. Rogers Neighborhood. To wit:
--United States Dressage Federation: Ka-ching!
--United States Equestrian Federation: Ka-ching!
--North Woods Dressage Association: Ka-ching!
--Central States Dressage and Eventing Association: Ka-ching!
All of which would really make me feel like a bona fide dressage rider were it not for the dismal evidence recorded in the schooling show photo above. I hope I have kept myself small enough so you can hardly see me.
Heads-up for the welter of excuses: "It was so hot that day! Montana slimed the waist of my riding pants so I had to have my shirt-tail out to cover it. The piano hands are my mother's fault: damn those mandatory piano lessons! The chair seat is my...office chair's fault. The slumped shoulders are the fault of my existential predicament: stuck at a horse show and forced to ride a test not of my own devising, oh the angst and horror, the horror. The bulging belly is the fault of the show food: fried cheese curds, dang you to heck!"
Only Montana looks cheerful, probably because he is yukking it up about my riding.
But hope springs eternal. That photo is 2 years old and oh how much my riding has improved hahahahahaha. So now around the barn when the girls ask, "Are you showing this summer?", I answer, "I hope to go to a couple of shows."
Translation: I hope to overcome my show nerves, fear of bolting, fear of hauling horses over the windy bridge to Wisconsin, reluctance to commit, reluctance to spend show fee money, inability to decide on a sensible range of tests, and complete lack of confidence and actually take my dressage horse to a dressage show. Why is it so hard?
The welter of emotions, that's why. Because alongside all the negativity and fear and loathing, there is this little dream of glory, this imaginary image: myself, floating around the ring, the railbirds not entertained this time but favorably impressed, my horse not a sainted martyr but a 'happy athlete' (from USDF show standards). I can dream can't I?
But meanwhile I have also renewed two fun memberships: Minnesota Trail Riders Association and MN Walking Horse Association (gaited horses really). These two groups are all about joy and they get out there and ride. I also dream of seeing this sight a lot this summer:
The days are getting longer and the sun is winning. Yay!