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A Small Town Country Boy Trying To Survive In Todays World

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Small Town Rodeos

Now I know you have all watched Rodeos on TV. The PBR or the National Finals, but what you don't see, or have not been shown, is the...well for loss of better words the half time show.

Now in the big Rodeos they bring in an act, or the bull fighters put on a show. But that is not always the case in a small town...we need to be creative.

Being raised in a small town, we all went through our stage of wanting to be a cowboy! In fact, some big time Rodeo Cowboys live within 20 miles of me. I'll give you a couple of names that are well know now; Clint Corey and Ross Colman. So it can be a big thing in a small country town.

I had my first experiences riding at Cowdeos that are for kids 14 and under. They have a variety of events for each age group starting with mutton busting for the young kids, calf riding for the
next group, and cow riding for the older kids.

So I started out at the bottom and worked my way up with no great success other than to say I never did get hurt...Pride don't count.

Enough of that lets get back to the story.

At our local arena the chutes did not have numbers on them they had sponsors so instead of the announcer saying now coming out of chute number 3, it was now coming out of the Olsens Saddlery chute, or who ever was the sponsor.

Well they came up with this Idea to have a wild cow riding contest and the sponsors had to provide a 3 person team for the event and the team won the prize money.

The trick they pulled was they did not tell them about it until the first day of the Rodeo, so they had no time to prepare teams. Most of the sponsors were big companies that had allot of men working for them so they recruited from the employees. All except one who I mentioned earlier Olsens Saddlery.

They were a small mom and pop business which had maybe four people working for them, and most of them were female. So Ray the owner went recruiting and for some reason I was first on his list.

So Ray got a hold of me and explained the situation to me, and asked if I could help...Of course I can. So I went and talked a couple of friends into doing it with me with promises of riches to be made...100 dollars for first place or something like that, split 3 ways. But they got a free ticket into the Rodeo!

Some of you might have seen wild horse races well it is the same, 3 people anchor on the end of the rope. A mugger who got the cow around the neck and slowed her down and the rider who put the rope on the cow and rode her across the arena. Now they added a little twist to this since it was cows we were riding. After you crossed the line with rider still aboard, you then had to take the halter off and run it back to the judges.

Ok we had the team together and were ready for the first day of a two day event. We showed up and we are the youngest there, by at least 10 years! So, we had to take the ribbing about being the young punks.

It was our time to go, so we got in front of the chute and they hand us the rope that is attached to the halter on the cow and got ready to start the count down. Time for some last minute plans..8 cows times 3 men each that's allot of bodies and animals to get ran over by!

We devised this last minute plan to throw open the chute and all three of us try to keep the cow in the chute. While I mount up and ride. 3, 2. 1, go throw open the chute and the 3 of us jump this cow and she just stands there as pretty as you please! Kinda looks at us like; Hi guys how's it going...? Wonderful could not be better! So we put the rope on no problem, get on her no problem, in fact she stood and let us pull the rope tight, great!

They let her go and she just stood there perfectly happy! They had to pull her out of the chute with the rope and herd her down the arena at a stately walk and the whole time I'm watching 7 other cows with riders cross the line with their anchors and muggers in hot pursuit. I can still remember thinking well there goes the money.

Well we finish our slow walk and finally cross the line..had no problem stopping our cow, she didn't want to go any where as it was! Took the halter off and walked to the judges. We got FIRST place! Because ?..nobody else could catch their cows.

Had a great laugh from that one.

Day two same people same place only different cows. Ok plan worked great first day so why change it. 3, 2, 1, go throw open the chute rush the cow..same results she just stands there.

Put the rope on her, She just stands there, I jump on her back, all hell breaks loose. Now this cow knew how to buck and liked it. So this time we were not the last cow across but the first with yours truly doing his best to stay on.

Well for some reason unknown even at this time she decided that that was enough and put the brakes on hard with me flying over her head in a pile in front of her! She then decided that maybe I should see what it was like to be rode because her next jump was on top of me doing her best tap dance.

Well I really don't remember a whole lot after that but finally came to my senses and realized that I was not in a good position and had better get outta there. Struggled to my feet and took a couple of steps just to meet my new girl friend again and she had to say hi again.

I'm not really sure what I did to piss her off at me so much but she had me down again and was giving it to me again but that was her mistake as my help came to the rescue and got the halter off her and helped me outta there, still got third place.

Well the following year we were dumb enough to do it again but this time it was all kids so we did not do so well.

At least there was no one hurt that year...

It is what it is



Lydia said...

That's funnny !

Riding cows? Kinda glad I was raised in the city :)

But wait! I'm a girl so I wouldn't have had to do that anyway.

Thanks for sharing.

Rods Wanderings said...

Hi Lydia
Yes riding cows nice mild mannared range cows.
They can be a little mean at times