Monday, March 19, 2007

Ride 'Em, Cowboy!

Mammas, don't let your babies grow up to be Cowboys...
Geek Boy back when he was still a cowboy!

My post today is in honor of my friend, Laura, and her son JB. They ride the rodeo circuit; Laura and her horse do barrel racing while JB rides bulls. Yes, her little boy rides BULLS! Okay, not so little anymore. He's an adult...legally. But still, once a mamma's little boy, always a mamma's little boy. Which doesn't mean they're any less a man, it just means we mammas always think of them as our sweet, rosy cheeked little monsters.
Cowboy from the Rockin' J Ranch buckles his chaps

JB has ridden in, what, four? five events? And twice he's gone the full eight seconds! Which officially makes him a man (so you can stop doing it now, JB, so your poor mamma doesn't go stir crazy each time you plop yourself down on one of those bad boys!)

Some years back, when Geek Boy was in kindergarten, we had an opportunity to volunteer at one of the county parks. It's actually an old homestead, and each summer is full of farm animals. This particular year there was a sow who'd had 19 piglets; one of them was very small and we were able to help with the bottle feeding.

Two piles of piglets...see the ones in the top right corner?

Geek Boy and I loved going out and feeding the animals. We got to do more than feed the piglets. I recall being out there on a sunny afternoon, getting a nice tan as I was happily scooping pig poop and being asked a question, to which I replied, "Oh, I'm just a volunteer." To which all the park guests turned to look and gasp. "You volunteer to clean up after pigs???" said the shocked woman. "That's not all," I assured her, "They also make me clean the chicken coop, and it stinks!"

Anyway, Geek Boy named the runt Oscar, and we'd sometimes bring along a friend of his to help us with the chores. Oscar loved people and visitors; we'd often times let him follow us around the park, much to the delight of visiting children.

Miss Mouse and Oscar

There were more than just little piggies and their mammas at Hovander. There were also three young pigs that you'd probably think of as teens. They were half grown, black and white, and rather friendly. One day while I had Geek Boy and Miss Mouse out there, Geek Boy had an idea. They'd try to ride a pig.

Now, I don't know if you're very familiar with pigs or not, but there's a reason John Wayne didn't ride one. And it's not just because his legs were too long and his feet would have drug the ground. No. It's because pigs don't want to be ridden. Bear in mind that Geek Boy was sired by a City Boy, but from the womb of a Desperate Horsewife. The urge to get on and ride came natural; he just didn't know what he was supposed to be riding.

Geek Boy and Miss Mouse hatch a plan.

Fortunately for Geek Boy, Miss Mouse was easily convinced. Unfortunately for Miss Mouse's mother, Miss Mouse was easily convinced. The two of them scaled the fence and sized up the young pigs. The potential mounts were dozing happily in the morning sun, completely unaware of the momentous occasion that was about to take place. As the children approached, the pigs jumped up. I'm guessing the children had had visions of just stepping onto the sleeping pigs, but this was not the case.

No, instead all h#%l broke loose. The pigs sensed something was up just as the kids were about to straddle them. Jumping to their little cloven hooves with a speed you wouldn't think a pig had, they left Miss Mouse and Geek Boy in the dirt. Not willing to admit defeat, the children began chasing the squealing pigs around the pen. Before long, they had an audience. We all stood along the rail of the fence wondering who was making more noise, the pigs or the kids. It was rather hard to say. The kids would chase the pigs, then the pigs would turn around and chase the kids. Squealing and squallering could be heard across the farmyard.

It was also hard to say who was winning. The children decided to join efforts and go after one pig. Miss Mouse would hold it still while Geek Boy would try to get on board. The other two pigs would roll on their sides laughing at the poor pig who was being mounted. But it wasn't as simple as just cornering him and climbing on. For as soon as Geek Boy had his leg over that pig's back, the pig shot forward, then spun in bucking circles just as though he were rodeo bucking stock.

That's when Miss Mouse decided that girls could ride better than boys. Geek Boy seemed more than willing to allow her to prove herself and cornered another pig. Miss Mouse gingerly attempted to lift herself onto his back, but before she could get her leg over he spun right into her, knocking her into the mud before squealing back to his buddies.

Regardless of their unsuccessful rides, the two of them had a great time pig bustin'. And, like many a cowboy, Geek Boy learned that eight seconds is a very long time when you're riding a bucking animal, even if it is a pig!


Sarah said...

What a cute memory. Too bad you don't have video to tease the grown kids now! Love the site of sleeping piglets, or sleeping baby anything for that matter.

Connie Peterson said...

When we lived in South Dakota, the local rodeo would have pigs for children to ride. The men would capture the pigs and put the children on them --- no children had to chase and capture a pig first! Then they would time how long a child could ride said pigs!! It was funny --- and very few rode for very long. Your adventure sounds like more fun!

Jean said...

What a great story! I must have been a riot to watch!

Alpicks Treasures said...

Youa re a busy lady. Your storys are very good. And I love all the pictures. You know its Spring when babies are in the pictures.

2 LMZ FARMS said...

Tracey, I was very touched that your post included JB and me. Thank you. You are right about always being mommas boy. Every time he climbs on, I don't see a grown man, I see my little blond headed rugrat that is 5. Dass did great. We had a good time but fell into the cracks, I think I'm just a "crack baby". I loved the story on the two riding pigs. You need to hear my Mother tell her story about her pig riding. It happened about 7 yrs ago and she is 66. It was too funny.
Hope you have a great day. I'm leaving out tommorrow for another rodeo won't be home till either Saturday or Sunday. Will miss reading your post.

Dawn said...

I am referring to your Amazing Grace post - I don't go to movies, but I will break myrule for this one. I've heard so much about it from Chuck Coulson.

Love the picture of Greek boy when he was a little cowboy. So cute!

RoseMary said...

Great post, Tracey! My hat is off to anyone who can stay on a bull the full 8 secs!! Loved the pics of the pigs--they are so adorable--as are the kids, of course!

Bluepaintred said...

oh geepers! those baby pigs are so darn cute!

Sue said...

I love cowboys!!! And those sleeping piggies too!! I also love the new color background, very nice!!