Something irregular occurred over the winter. We horses have morphed into one color—bay. It’s as if I enrolled in a genetic research project that advanced earth tones. Adding to these shades of sameness, a dozen new houseguests arrived and have been hiding something under their winter blankets. Brown. This came to light when we all shed our cold weather gear. So, imagine my anxiety when one of our more refined newcomers, Ms. Fendi, asked what I did for a living and why I looked like everyone else.
First of all, I do not posses a professional resume. My LinkedIn profile features more selfies than career accomplishments. Second, I don’t exactly make a living. It’s Madam who makes a living for the two of us. I happen to furnish the inspiration for her to keep doing that.
So, in the interest of getting better acquainted and steering Ms. Fendi toward more pleasing conversation, I asked her if she liked to dance. I might as well have asked her if she would like a small case of poison ivy.
“I mean, what are you Noah?” she probed, ignoring my attempts to change the subject. “A show jumper, an eventer, a pre-Saint George dressage contender?” It was the Margaret Thatcher tone that brought me up short. “Do you ride to the hounds, or do you winter in Wellington, Florida?” she searched.
Well, For Pete’s sake, this is Minnesota. I only wish I wintered in Wellington, Florida! Our little tête-à-tête was getting awkward. What began as a pleasant exchange with a striking Dutch warmblood female had turned into a job interview. Gads, job interviews meant high performance expectations – the very thing that got me fired from the racetrack. My teeth started to chatter at the memory.
“I’m an American quarter horse,” I finally croaked.
“And just what might that be?” Ms. Fendi muttered behind a withering gaze.
“I’m an American quarter horse rock star,” I explained with rising confidence tempered by trepidation.
She then asked what musical instrument an American quarter horse rock star played.
“No instrument yet, but Helene Gustafson from the Waconia Feed Emporium offered to teach me how to play the trombone. And by the way, I’m learning Spanish from my housekeeper Maribel.” Ms. Fendi looked doubtful.
“I also play Michigan rummy and occasionally herd the Anderson’s geese. And, of course, I blog for Donna Cavanagh’s Humor Outcasts website.” This last detail piqued her curiosity.
“So, Noah Vail, do you do any of those things well,” Ms. Fendi sighed.
Why do I always get myself crosswise with females like this?
“Why yes,” I said flashing my most intrepid smile. “I bake a mean hummingbird cake. Would you care to join me for tea and a bite of dessert?”
How could a girl resist?