A Christmas wish list for a Grinch

I suppose that at this time of year it is normal to include a “wish list” of things that I want for Christmas.

Of course I want all of those things that a normal adult would ask for — world peace — not that a normal adult would expect that but nevertheless, consider it asked for. The next thing on the list would be for the fires to stop in California or the rains to come in California, except that out there everything happens in wide screen and Technicolor so who knows what would happen if Mother Nature heeded my request?


Not sure that I want to be held responsible for those rains so I will just ask for the fires to stop. There are a lot things that belong on this list and it is too long to be put here, so let’s just consider all of the decent things to be asked for, shall we?

I suppose that the biggest thing I want for Christmas is for all of the political voices on both sides of that dreadful fence to just, well, SHUT UP at least until Jan. 2, 2018. I am tired of being harangued by both sides. I am exhausted by volleys of abuse and return volleys of contra-abuse. Nothing has changed. Everyone knows what everyone thinks and no one has come up with anything that has not been endlessly reiterated.

Just for these few weeks could we please indulge in a season of abeyance?

I am also tired of being told that certain modes of seasonal address are no longer politically correct. If simply by changing the seasonal address we can keep some folks happier then can’t they extend that happiness to include seasonal words that do not represent their beliefs?

Can’t their joy extend to allowing others their own joy?

I thought that Scrooge was vanquished by the three Ghosts of, oh, darn it — those three seasonal apparitions — so how come he now owns the right of controlling the utterances of persons who might otherwise be having a pretty good time wishing joy to acquaintances in their own ways.

If that is impossible, I would even settle for folks going around and putting their fingers in their ears and saying loudly, “La, la, la!” when they hear something that they consider to be a politically incorrect season’s greeting. That would get the point across and still keep the level of seasonal jollity where it should be.

Might even increase it, come to think about it. I know I’d laugh.

So that’s what I want. But I want more. I want trail riders to be able to ride their horses right off their farms and out around the edges of the fields around them. I want them to be able to hack carefully around the edges of the developments near them without having angry people making a big deal out of it. I want those riders to be able to ride for a hundred feet or so on the side of the roads to get to the trails without being blown out of their saddles by people who are already exceeding local speed limits.

I’ll go farther.

I want those drivers to actually slow down and let a person on a horse have a little space on the road for the, what, maybe three minutes it takes them to get off the road into a field or driveway safely. We all did it in the bad old days. It can be done again. You’d think with all of the time-saving devices that we feel we need these days we ought to have more time, not less.

Add to that the fact that I want all of those folks who already know it all to take a minute to talk to some of the older people who might know something that they don’t. It is amazing how much information there is out there. It isn’t on the Internet or in the shiny, glossy horse magazines and it isn’t in those well-subsidized RFD-TV horse courses either.

It is out there but it is in the heads of older people, people who have seen not just the horse that they own or even the two horses that they own but literally several hundred horses that they have handled in their lifetimes.

If you are in the horse business for long enough, say a life time or so, you don’t have to be a “dealer” (a term of abjuration these days) to have seen all those horses — you just have to live long enough in the business to be around them. There’s a wealth of information out there just for the asking — if you just ask.


Now y’all go ahead and have yourselves a merry and politically incorrect … well, you know.