Monday, October 1, 2007

Adapt, Improvise, and Overcome

Today in business class we did an exercise called "Lost At Sea" which was basically a hypothetical situation. Your yacht (holy crap I have a yacht?) is going down due to a fire. Your best bet is you're a thousand miles out in the Pacific, you have five crew members, their pocket plunder, and these fifteen items. Rank them in importance.

Then get in the assigned groups and rank them as a group. No voting, or averaging allowed, you must persuade your group members.

Now here's what the Merchant Marines say the ranking should be.

Figure the difference between the Merchant Marines' ranking, your individual ranking, and your group ranking. Total the differences in each column.

The closer the numbers are for your individual ranking and the group ranking, the more influence you had, and the more managerial skills you have.

My numbers were identical.

And I still maintain that fifteen feet of rope is of higher importance to survival than a transistor radio! Or a quart of rum.

It's Good To Be Me

Well E forgot a previous engagement for yesterday, and I let him off the hook to tend to it, so I went home alone, stopped at the construction site where Farmmom had been wrangled into working the last day of 24 hour work, and hung out for a while. I helped pull some of the light plants off, and then the pilot car driver needed a break.

Farmmom looked at me and said "You want the last round?"

I looked back at her and said "Yer damn skippy I do!"

So I wound up driving the pilot car for a couple of hours while they finished up the pick up on the site, the last hour and a half of it being with the other pilot car driver, who told me "No way are you driving the last round without me" as she climbed in the passenger seat.

I was just doing it for the satisfaction, but apparently at the end of the day, the company owner, who was on site to help, and who I mentioned in the previous post, told Farmmom to put me down for the time I was on site, since I was helping.

Works for me, man!

I rolled on site about nine thirty, left about four, and I got paid from ten to four.

Why? Because I'm me, that's why. Owner Lady is one of my favorite people, and she seems to like me too, which works out well for me since not only will she give me work when I need it but she also wants to help me with the horse end of my ambitions.

I just love it when I go hang out and screw around and wind up getting paid for it.

Bits and Things

On my last post about BubbahMonkey (hey, it made Farmmom laugh, I have to use it) a nice discussion about different bits vs. bosals and hackamores was sparked.

Mustanger is worried that the wrong size bit will be detrimental to the horse, and wonders about bosals and hackamores.

Horse Prof likes the snaffle for training, but once the horse is well broke to the snaffle, wants to go to a spade bit.

Me, I like curb bits for the well broke horse. I've had some that needed a roller to entertain themselves with (I think Monkey is going to be one of those, he likes to chew on his bit when he's bored and a curb just doesn't have the flex to allow that) but the curb is what I grew up using, it gives you a certain level of sensitivity, and minimizes the chance of really hurting the horse if something goes wrong (the horse spooks, etc) and you go off, but keep the reins (always keep the reins if you can. Why chase a horse if you don't have to?)

As far as hacks and bosals.. I prefer having a snaffle on a green horse, now that I've had some experience with them. For me, hacks and bosals are for the well broke horse that already neck reins. Horse Prof brought up futurities and high-end competitions where two handed reining is required in a hack, and I understand that. Those horses have been trained in the hack since they were started, though, and they're being ridden by fantastic horsemen. I am not on that level, by any means.

I'm also looking at it less from a competition angle, and more from a working cow horse angle. Not a competitive athlete, but a working ranch horse that's required to do a little bit of everything, consistently, when it's called for. I think it's probably more difficult to train one of those than to train a competition horse, because you can't afford to focus on one thing at the expense of others.

That's what I'm trying to do with Monkey. Right now we're focusing on just riding well and behaving. Once he's doing really well on that, which actually shouldn't be long now, we'll start volunteering to help with the rodeo practices and actually working with the steers and calves. This summer, we'll get more cow work in because I've already warned Farmmom that her cows are going to have to be pushed around to train the horses to do what we want them to.

But for me, a willing horse can be put in nearly any bit that you like, as long as you have the ability to communicate clearly what you want.

In other news, it looks like I may have a full summer ahead of me, my former boss (from road work... more on than in another post) has some three year olds that she needs ridden out. Just miles on the saddle kind of thing, but she's hinting that she might have me ride them out, and she's offered me a two year old for when I do the starting colts program. So the three year olds, along with the turn arounds from the auction, ought to keep me entertained well enough this summer.