The Stud Chain Part Three: The Old Gray Mare

My elbow hurts this morning.  I dread that pain, because I know it will probably get worse the more I ignore it, and I will probably have to go get another shot.  I hate those shots.  So I wait for the pain to creep up to my shoulder, for the elbow to hurt so much I can barely type or pick up the car keys because I know that shot is going to hurt a lot more.

My elbow hurts because I fell on it last year.  Not just the elbow, the whole arm, when I made a pretty safe landing with my right arm tucked in, folded flat against my body, my hand protecting my face and my shoulder taking the brunt of the hit.  It was a good fall, the result of years of practice.  But I’m getting too old for this sh…  My shoulders and hips don’t like being the primary point of impact with the ground in a six to nine foot tumble.  They complain every day and do their best to make me feel really old, not just past my prime.

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The Stud Chain Part Two: Pears

For ages, women were warned away from riding or working with stallions. Many claimed that our scent would drive a stallion insane. As women began to ignore this rule and keep stallions anyway, the rule morphed into “don’t handle stallions when you have your period.” Well, when I am the primary handler for a stallion, I cannot exactly take time off every month in case I’m releasing the wrong pheromones. Never mind the fact that an accurate analysis of the pheromones and hormones involved completely discredit the theory that the time of the month we notice is of any interest to a stallion. I have never had a stallion behave any differently around me based on the time of the month or whether I had showered recently or used a new shampoo or different perfume. They do not seem to care what I smell like, even if I spent the last hour grooming a herd of mares. I have no doubt that they do notice, but it does not have the effect of driving them to deranged behavior. Perhaps the walnut is mightier than the pear?  Perhaps they know I’m not a mare?

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The Stud Chain Part One: Walnut

Note: the following contains material that may be disturbing, and frank discussion of subjects that may cause squeamishness.  But that stuff  goes away after the first few paragraphs.

Disclaimer: The following is not advice, but an account of my experience.  Just because I survived that experience doesn’t mean I’m not an idiot.

I got my first stallion when I was 13 or 14. Who in the heck would buy a stallion for a 13 year old girl, you ask? Well, someone who recognized the horse’s assets as something other than a breeding animal (like a show horse) and intended to geld him.

Some people get really touchy about this, and then accuse me of anthropomorphism. Not only non-horse people. There are countries where castrating a horse is illegal. They would rather kill the horse than geld him, and they do. I imagine if the horses had a vote, they would prefer to be geldings.  Here, in the US, it is legal to geld horses. Mercifully.

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