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Horse Slobs

By Cindy Hale

Saturday, December 4, 2010

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I am a horse slob. I came to this realization the other day while I was trail riding. I crossed paths with one of the local horse trainers in town and after we exchanged greetings she said, “I almost didn’t recognize you. Your hair looks so nice and you’re wearing earrings.”

Has it gotten to the point where it’s remarkable when I style my hair and dangle some jewelry from my ears?

I guess so.

But in my defense, spending what seems like half a day doing horse chores robs me of any enthusiasm for getting all gussied up. Once I’m done with the horses I trudge into the house and change from jeans, long-sleeved t-shirt and a jacket into sweatpants, long-sleeved t-shirt and a zip-up hoodie. For added comfort, after I’ve cast my boots aside I step into a pair of cheap, fleece lined leather slippers. Yes, I bought them in the men’s aisle of the shoe section at Target. But they fit well (providing I wear them with a thick pair of socks) and they were oddly cheaper than their counterparts over on the women’s aisle. And like every other horsewoman, I’m always looking for a bargain. Hay is expensive.

As for my hair? Well, I feel like an Andalusian mare. Everyone (especially my husband) tells me that I look best with my hair long and full. But I’m the one who has to care for this mane. The entire washing and blow drying routine is a hassle. It looks great for one day, maybe two, and then it goes through a slow de-evolution of style. First I instigate the Big Barrette. That allows me to have a portion of flowing locks that bob against my neck at the canter. Then a few days later I’m utilizing the beaded ponytail holder. Looks snazzy sticking out from under my helmet. By the time I’m reduced to using a couple of Braidettes (those tiny elastic bands made for training a horse’s mane to one side) to corral my hair and stuff it under a ball cap, you know I’m warming up to another at-home salon session. Dig out the shampoo and conditioner, fire up the blow dryer and alert the horse community. Cindy’s about to style her hair!

I guess I’m sharing this with you just in case you’re a horse slob like me. Maybe knowing that you have a kindred spirit will lift your spirits. Next time you’re wandering through the grocery store or standing in the teller line at the bank, and someone is staring at you because you’re dressed in a manner that vaguely resembles a down-on-their-luck agricultural worker or a sloppy gym rat, just smile politely and nod. Then say, “You’ll have to excuse me. I am a horsewoman and I’m tired. But if you catch up with me on, say, Wednesday, I’ll look like a completely different person. You’ll be amazed!”

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Reader Comments

Emam    Winter Park, FL

12/19/2010 11:25:31 AM

Too funny

Kaitlynn    STV, AZ

12/12/2010 10:12:55 PM

This time of year you should see my barn coat. Covered in dried mud, slobber, white hair from my mare's blaze and some kind of stain on the sleeve. But I dont have time to wash and dry it. When I stop at the store on the way back from the barn I know people stare at me like maybe I'm a homeless person. But I'm just a horse slob!!!

Maddie    Houston, TX

12/6/2010 12:52:29 PM

At the stable I wear my hair in a messy pony tail or bun and end up dressing in dirty breeches from the day before and a gray USDF sweatshirt. I don't care what I look like there; the horses don't care and at the stable its pretty much about talent, right? Who needs fashion. But about a month ago I planned to go to see Secretariat with a barn friend whom I had never seen outside of horses. We planned to meet each other there, and when I saw her standing there, I called to her and she gave me that look like "how do you know my name, stranger?" I had to explain to her that I was, in fact, Maddie from the stable but with nice clothes and blow-dryed hair. Since then i'v been trying to make an effort to look nicer at the barn.

Jessi    Carleton Place, ON

12/5/2010 6:10:11 AM

During the winter I tend to style my hair and stuff like that all the time, but when spring and summer come along, I have better things to think about (:P)
Also, during the summer, I work at a horse farm/riding camp, this means that my hair goes unstyled for weeks at a time. So, I have concluded that I am indeed..... a horse slob, and proud of it

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