What does my Shetland Pony have in Common with Secretariat?






Well, nothing really.  But, maybe… I’ve been thinking about this…

Have you seen the trailer for the new Disney movie, SECRETARIAT?  If not, here is the link.  Anyway, I watched the trailer this morning and I was bawling by the end of it.  That motivated me to go to Wikipedia for the Cliff Notes and often inaccurate summaries of the history of Secretariat.  The movie trailer had indicated hardship and struggle, belief when no one else would and David slaying Goliath kind of epic stuff.  Wikipedia didn’t go into any of that but did give me his race history and life/death stuff.  I was compelled.  The emotion I felt for this horse and the people around him made me swoon.  It made me even stronger in my conviction to make a difference in the horse world.

Now, how can I make a difference?  Well, I have lots of post-it notes with famous and inspiring quotes stuck around everywhere that tell me I can do it.  Unfortunately, they don’t tell me how.  So far, I’ve only come up with HORSE AND MAN the TV series which is on hiatus…  And, this blog.  So, here I sit, feeling the need to elevate the human awareness of the value of the horse but not sure how to go about it.   How am I going to do this?  I can write about horses every day… which I am doing… but maybe it has something to do with the way I write about the horse that might make a difference.  Dunno.

You see, the human perception is different for famous horses.  Secretariat was a stellar individual with a trunkload of talent.  He was in the right place at the right time and he tipped.  It all came together for him.  And there have been other famous horses who had the same fortune when effort met with opportunity.  Those kinds of stories are easy for the human to oooh and aaaah and feel misty-eyed over.  An athlete horse or a show horse or a trick horse … those horses stand before us and we take note.  But what about your average horse?  How do I elevate the thinking around the horse in general?  I mean, not all dogs are Rin Tin Tin, but we humans are coming around to elevating our regard for the dog in general.  How about the horse?  They aren’t all Secretariats, but they are all something special in and of themselves.

So how will I go about this?  I have no idea, yet.  But, eventually, hopefully, my efforts will meet an opportunity, too.  In the meantime, I’ve been inspired by the Secretariat trailer to talk about the stellar qualities in the everyman horses.  They haven’t done anything newsworthy or record breaking.  However, they all have talent of one kind or another. I’m not sure if there are any special awards or noteworthy contests for lock picking, door opening, stealth grain stealing, fence rail breaking, trough bathing, extreme rolling, Houdini Fly Mask removal, blanket stomping, pocket searching, accurate cow kicking, bloating, buckin’ horse imitations and many other varied and sordid achievements, but all horses do have special talents.  Just like we all have special talents.  So, my effort today to elevate the human awareness of the horse is to talk about my everyman Shetland pony, Slick.

What does my Shetland Pony have in common with Secretariat…  Well, a few things, actually.  Slick is the fastest pony I’ve ever seen, he is loved by a female human and he is for sure the most proud pony I have ever met although I think pride is a pony trait.  But probably the most similar characteristic is his ability to steadfastly go after what he wants.  However, comparing my average joe pony to Secretariat isn’t really the point.   I think I need to compare him to no one.  I think I just need to talk about how special he is as an individual.  He hasn’t set any world records, but he is a champion in my book… Here’s why:

Slick was born a rank and surly high plains drifter trapped inside the body of an adorable pie-bald Shetland pony.  For that, he deserves accolades.  The poor boy does his very best to prove to all who will listen that he is the Dirty Harry of his breed, a Big Horse to be reckoned with or left alone on a grassy plain.  He’s Clint Eastwood yet he looks like Pee Wee Herman.  Imagine the difficulty in that!   When Slick sees me approaching his paddock, this pint-sized toughguy snakes his neck and grates his teeth along the pipe gate just to let me know NOT to mess with him today.  And all it makes me do is giggle.  The indignity!  Yet, he survives… He never gives up.  He never gives in.  He has the temerity of a worker ant and is relentless at getting his point across.  “I want OUT now!  Now!  Now! Now!”

Slick will remove all the tools from the farrier’s pockets without him knowing.  And, he can steal a treat or topple a grain barrel lickety split!  He is a quick draw with an angelic face.  Maybe Val Kilmer’s Doc Holliday is a better comparison.  No one took Doc Holliday seriously until they saw him draw his gun.  That’s my Slick.  No one knows how fierce he can be until he swipes your wallet and slinks off silently without anyone knowing.

And for all his bravado, I know his soft spot.  He will gently let my tiny step-daughter groom him until his skin is raw.  He never bites or gives her attitude, he just gently moves away when he’s done.  Just like any gentleman gunslinger with a golden heart and a boyish grin — he captures your heart.  That’s my boy.  Adorably bad to the bone.

HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth… if you like this, please pass it around!




HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth... if you like this, please pass it around!



Saturday is PhoBlog Day! Mini Filly (again), Standing Cat, New Baby and Recycle Feed Sack Idea.






Saturday is PhoBlog Day!   Today we have an assortment of pics.  I hope you enjoy these with  your coffee and your weekend!

1)  First I have to send you a new pic of my favorite mini filly.  Here she is, getting pets from a visitor to her rescue.  The horse behind the fence is a new arrival draft.  The Biggee and the Little ‘un together at the fence!

2)  These two photos are of a friend Patricia’s new colt born three days ago. This is his first hour… bonding with Mom.  I got the stats from Patricia who owns the mare, “My  mare is ISR/Oldenburg reg., sire is Hanoverian (super cool horse ~ “10” temperament ~ owned by Dana Estes of Vineyard Eventing in No. Cal. ~  reserve champ of his 100 day test ) ”

Hot Tip: If you ever want to demo a saddle of the English persuasions, please contact Patricia (email: murphyfam@yahoo.com).  She runs a ‘used but in great condition’ online saddle shop and I have first hand experience.  She is full of integrity and you will be pleased with the trial and the saddle!

3)  This shot killed me!  It is of a cat who trained himself to stand on the couch to see out the window.  This photo is actually a screen shot from the video floating around You-Tube.

4)  I saw this on the internet when I was researching what to do with used feedbags.  I thought this was interesting…  so, I’m adding this pic.

5)  Who can’t appreciate this one!  The Grass is Always Greener on the Other Side of the Fence!

Check back tomorrow!  I have no clue what I am going to write about but it will be done by the time you get there!

HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth… if you like this, please pass it around!




HORSE AND MAN is a blog in growth... if you like this, please pass it around!