As I mentioned a couple weeks ago, the story about my most horrific riding injury won the Wanker of the Week title from my favorite equestrian podcast. The cool thing about it is that you don’t just win the title, you also win a ribbon. A really really sparkly AF ribbon, or as the Buckoff Banter ladies call it – a “frilly”. I’m assuming this is the British horse person slang for what they otherwise call a rosette, and honestly I’m not sure why we can’t steal that vernacular from them (along with my other favorite British word “numpty”) because frilly sounds way better than ribbon.
Anyway, I totally forgot about the frilly and it was quite the amazing surprise last week when I pulled that envelope out of my mailbox and opened it. Y’all, you could blind somebody with this thing. It fits in really well with my other special ribbons, though. I’m amassing a collection over here. And honestly I’m a wanker at least once a week every week, so this might be the most fitting frilly yet.
Case in point: the thing that happened to me a couple hours after I pulled said Wanker of the Week frilly out of my mailbox. Let me set the scene.
It was last Friday, and I was headed out to the barn in the morning to squeeze in a quick ride. I’d had a thousand Skype and Team meetings the day before (ok maybe a thousand is a slight exaggeration but I’m a wanker so lets just go with it), more coming that afternoon, I was tired, it was hot… my brain was just kind of done. I couldn’t muster the mental fortitude that a dressage ride requires with Henry, so I tossed my saddle and sidepull on him instead and headed out toward the hacking trail in the back for a nice easy decompressing canter.
As we set off I thought “ya know what would make this even better? Some tunes!” so I pulled my phone out of my pocket, pulled up Spotify, and scrolled through my playlists. I was kind of stuck deciding between a couple different ones, so I opened them up and was looking at the songs when I got a face full of tree. See, I wasn’t paying any attention to where Henry was walking, and naturally he walked right under a low branch. Luckily it was mostly just a lot of leaves, so no harm done I thought. He kept walking, I kept scrolling.
As we emerged onto the hacking path and turned right, I finally picked my playlist, clicked on it, and was putting my phone back in my pocket when WHAM. Right through another low-hanging branch. I’m starting to think Henry does this on purpose when I’m not paying attention because this one wasn’t even in our path, he had to step to the side to scrape me through it. But again, mostly just leaves, so whatever.
We keep walking, me finally taking a deep breath and settling in for a nice hack. I glance down and notice an ant on my leg. Huh, weird. I brush it off, and then notice another one. And then another one. And then realized they were on both legs, and my saddle, and my saddle pad. Then one dropped off the brim of my helmet right around the time I felt a sharp sting and burn in my shirt. And that’s when it finally clicked – one of the trees I went through must have had fire ants on it, and they were now deposited all over me.
So I did what any self-respecting, dignified person would do. I removed my helmet, pulled my shirt off, and swung it around my head ala Petey Pablo. It was full of fire ants, one does what one must do in such a situation. Luckily I was way out in the back where there were no witnesses (that I know of) but I’ll be honest I probably would have done the same thing even if there were people around. Anyway, I got them all out of my shirt and sports bra and helmet, made sure they were all brushed off of my saddle, put my shirt and helmet back on, and resumed my ride. Other than 5-6 fire ant bites, no harm no foul. I swear I could hear Henry cackling. Guess that’ll teach me to pay attention to where I’m going instead of messing with my phone. I’d say lesson learned but… did I really learn? Did I? Only time will tell.
I’m definitely a wanker all over again though. This numpty needs another frilly.