He’s Got Star Quality

“Horses are amazing. They have their own personality
and their own way of doing things. They make up their
mind whether they like you or don’t like you, and I got
along terrific with almost all the horses I’ve ever had.”
Burt Reynolds 

Jimmy aka, James Dean RIP 1986 - 2013

Jimmy aka, James Dean
RIP 1986 – 2013

Horses, just like humans, have personalities as unique as their owners. In the fifty plus years of riding, training and giving lessons, the one thing I’ve learned is that no two horses are similar in their personalities. A horse’s personality is molded as he grows and matures. His experiences with trainers, handlers and owners form his mind into what he is today. The horse memory can exceed ours for past bad experiences and, unfortunately for the horse and human, the horse can’t delete those bad experiences from his brain.  You can attempt to breed in traits, or even clone a horse, and you will find that each horse stands alone.

A few years back I was trail riding with a friend. She has one of the most beautiful reining horses at our barn. As we rode side by side out on the trail, we were discussing different topics. I commented to her how beautiful her horse was. She was a little taken aback by my comment and immediately began to point out some of her horse’s flaws. Disagreeing with her opinion of her horse, I continued to tell her that if her horse were a celebrity he would be Hugh Jackman. She thought that was the funniest comment she had ever heard about her horse. Explaining to her that the reason I saw the similarities in such a famous and talented actor was because her horse not only possessed such handsome good looks, but also had talent, perfect confirmation, brains, athletic ability and was charismatic to boot. Yep, her horse undeniably could win a Hugh Jackman look-a-like contest.

We both laughed and discussed this in great detail, comparing other horses in the barn with celebrities. She asked me what celebrity I thought my horse resembled. After thinking about this for a few moments, I replied that he sure wouldn’t be Charlie Sheen. My horse has too much common sense and class.

My horse Jimmy is a twenty-six year-old paint gelding. Smartest horse I’ve ever known with a great deal of bravery for a horse of his stature. Easy on the eye, he stands just 14.2 hands and he weighs in around 800 pounds. He’s a Tobiano Dun with a long flowing white mane and tail. On sunny days, his white coat shimmers and twinkles like the tips of his coat are lit up by tiny light crystals. He’s an ex-cutting horse who’s not quite as athletic as he used to be, but what he lacks in athleticism, he makes up in honesty and trustworthiness. People young and old are drawn to his good looks and then fall in love with his tricks and antics, which he is famous for at every stable we’ve ever boarded or visited. He is a celebrity in his own right and often friends and acquaintances will ask me, “How’s Jimmy”, long before they ask about myself.

No, Jimmy wouldn’t be a George Clooney or a Russell Crowe. He’s more of a classic celebrity like John Wayne or Jimmy Stewart. A much more rugged and sturdy character of a horse. He also is quite charismatic for a horse. Sticking his tongue out at people as they walk by, which is his attempt at getting their attention. Jimmy’s extremely intelligent, he knows 18 word commands and several hand commands without touching him to perform his array of tricks.  He’s more of a superstar, a horse that everyone enjoys and wants to be around.  If I could compare him to a Hollywood Horse, he would definitely be compared to Roy Rogers’ horse, Trigger.

As my friend began to name one celebrity after the other, I told her that the only celebrity that came to mind was Burt Reynolds. With his confident demeanor, nonchalant attitude, and charismatic personality, Jimmy could only be compared to Burt Reynolds.

What celebrity does your horse resemble? It’s kind of a fun question when you think about. Is your filly more of a Julia Roberts or Angelina Jolie?  Is your stallion a Sylvester Stallone or Bradley Cooper?  Whichever superstar your horse resembles, you know he will always be your favorite star and you will always be his biggest fan. Why? Because he’s got star quality.

Shine On

Funny at any Age

“Keeping an active mind
has been vital to my survival,
as has been maintaining
a sense of humor.”
Stephen Hawking

Harpo, Chico and Groucho Marx = Lots of Laughs

I’ve always been a sucker for a man or woman with a sense of humor.

You had to have a good sense of humor in my family. There was always some form of humor. Whether my parents or siblings were doing pratfalls, jokes, imitations of movie stars or comedians, or just listening to comedy albums, all was part of my growing up.

I grew up watching the Marx Brothers, Laurel and Hardy, W. C. Fields, Judy Holiday, Abbott and Costello, Danny Kaye, Red Skelton,  I Love Lucy, Looney Tunes, Rocky and Bullwinkle, Burns and Allen, Jack Benny, and Martin and Lewis.

In my teens I was a huge fan of sitcoms, musical comedies, and comedians such as Steve Martin, David Steinberg, Jonathan Winters, Robin Williams, The Smothers Brothers, Carol Burnett, Flip Wilson, Dick Cavett, Don Rickles, Robert Klein, Albert Brooks, Dudley Moore, Soupy Sales, Steve Allen, Rich Little, Johnny Carson, and Woody Allan just to mention a few.

In my 20’s through my 50’s the comedians and the type of humor I’m drawn to are not much different from the one’s I enjoyed in my youth. Some of my favorites are thankfully still alive today.

As a senior citizen, I still enjoy a good joke, a great sitcom and a romantic comedy. There are a lot of great comedians around today. My taste in humor hasn’t changed much over the years. Funny is funny at any age.

Shine On

Happy Birthday Mozart

“I pay no attention whatever to anybody’s praise or blame.
I simply follow my own feelings.”
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Young Mozart

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart born January 27, 1756 and died on December 5, 1791

He was the most prolific and influential composer of the Classical era. He began composing and performing before European royalty at the age of five. Composing over 600 works of music, he is among the most enduring and popular of the classical composers.

Happy Birthday Mozart.

Shine On

Cloudy With a Chance of Rain

“When I was in the hospital they gave me apple juice every morning,
even after I told them I didn’t like it. I had to get even.
One morning, I poured the apple juice into the specimen tube.
The nurse held it up and said, ‘It’s a little cloudy.’
I took the tube from her and said,
‘Let me run it through again,’
and drank it. The nurse fainted.”
Alan King

Clouds
The clouds are high as ones eye can see
Spanning the width of the never ending sea
I can feel the pressure in every part of me
Pressure building
Waiting for the rain
I don’t need the weather man
To tell me about the precipitation
I can feel it and see it that’s all I need
Telling each part of me
That it’s cloudy with a chance of rain
By: J R

Shine On

Funny Girl

“People
People who
need people
Are the luckiest
people in the world.”
Bob Merrill 

Funny Girl Album Cover from 1966 Broadway Show

Funny Girl Album Cover from 1965 Broadway Show

One of my all time favorite musicals “Funny Girl” was on television the other night. I was just a kid when my parents brought this Broadway hit album home in 1965. It didn’t take me long before I had every lyric of every song memorized.

“Funny Girl” became a huge hit, not only as a Broadway Musical but also as a movie. I was too young to see the Broadway version, but I was the first in line at the movie theater with my friends when it was released in September 1968.

I can remember sitting in the movie theater singing along with Streisand as she sang each and every song. My friends were blown away that I knew all the lyrics. Especially since I hadn’t told them I knew all the music. I just thought every kid knew the lyrics. Guess I was wrong.

To my surprise, when I watched the movie the other day, all the lyrics came back to me. How is it I can’t remember what I made for breakfast two days ago, but start playing the music from “Funny Girl” and I start singing along without missing a note or lyric. Guess I’m just a funny girl.

Shine On