The book of unanswered questions


am sitting here at the computer with a small tot of post luncheon blackberry wine.


Oenophiles can now begin curling your lips at will — it's fine with me. I don't care because the warmth is beginning to come back into my chilly little feet and my aching joints are the least bit better. I am not sure if the sun is actually over the yardarm because, of course, I can't see the sun or the yardarm on a day like this.

I am also listening to Dr. Phil in the ear that is aimed at the television set, and young people are justifying their choice of being addicted to prescription medication. "Because if a doctor gives it to you that means that it is all right!"


What is obviously not being mentioned is that is a good excuse even if you have to go to three or four doctors to get the amount that floats your boat. Not!

Under the heading of social interaction, I had a conversation yesterday morning that taught me this: It is important not to have too firm a grasp on what is possible at the expense of what might be possible — if not now, then later.

If that seems to be a rather frail principle, at least it opens the doors to lines of thought that can give you hours of entertainment arguing with yourself over details that may never come to fruition anyway. This is not as entirely pointless as you might imagine because thinking is a wonderful exercise even though it is rarely touted by those who conscientiously do physical types of exercise.

Later Tuesday I was talking to someone who still owns a son of my old stallion, How D Super Skip, and we spoke of some of the other mares that were bred to that horse. One of them was a lovely big sorrel mare named Bedsprings (no, I am not kidding) that was by a stallion named Rock Springs.

Lovely she may have been but shortly after we bought her, we found out that she had several of what Virginia Woolf might have referred to as her "angularities."

If, for instance, you led her through the same gate on the farm for two weeks straight and there was no problem, it did not mean that on day 15 the mare would not go bananas in the middle of the gate and smash you against the posts on either side.

The mare was bought to be bred to Skipper and there was no need to ever get on her, but on a day when there was not much going on, I did get on her.

This actually harkens back to the thoughts of "pointless exercise" because I found out on that ride that, while the mare would go forward with another horse wonderfully for a good quarter of the way around the field, she would also then run backwards for about half that distance when she thought it was a good idea. She did this not once or twice but repeatedly all the way around the field.

She did not bolt, or spin or buck. She just ran backward. While the other horse and rider had a nice hack around the big field, Bedsprings and I went forward and ran backward and went forward again all the way around that field.

I tried what I knew but I must admit it was a pretty half-hearted business on my side knowing that this mare was going to be a broodmare as soon as we could get her bred. It was trying though, I will admit that.

In fact it was trying enough that when we finally got back to the center of the farm I rode that mare (forward and backward) all the way down to the mailbox and back just for spite.

It may be important to admit that even coming back to the center of the farm the mare would still run backwards. I don't know why I need to say that but it indicates that this running backward business was not something that she employed as an evasive mode. In my own defense I will say that no other horse that I ever rode did this either.


And, for the pure in heart, I will say that none of the foals that this mare gave us ever had this glitch. They were all sane and quiet. As a broodmare with her foals the mare was also sane and quiet.

So I suppose this behavior will forever after be listed in my own great book of unanswered horse questions under the subtitle, "Go Figure."

"Go Figure" doesn't have a lot of entries in my great book of horse questions. In my great book of regular life, it's another matter altogether.


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