Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Where’s My Parachute?

Good afternoon, gentle readers. I do plan to comment here shortly about the Madison Square Garden event, but I just had to share this with you all first. It all started when we were lounging around on Sunday afternoon, watching the PBR on NBC and making our customary snide remarks. All of a sudden, I was moved, for the first time this season, to go pull out my Turn Him Out! journal so I could make some notes.

Yes, friends, I am embarrassed to admit that I have an actual journal specifically for this purpose, and if you saw it, you would doubtless write me completely off as a poser, because I snagged it at a used book sale and it actually has curlicues and flowers and flourishes and the words “rose” and “love” in a girly golden script floating around on the cover. But it also has a spiral spine that makes it easy to write in while I’m holding it on my lap, and big pages to accommodate my slanderous observations that sometimes, I am sorry to say, do get writ large in really black ink. Suffice it to say that what’s on the inside doesn’t match what’s on the outside very often, if at all.

As luck would have it, I retrieved the journal just as Ty Murray was talking about whether the riders should think about hiring coaches, and when I opened the book up, what should fall out but three pages of scribbles from God knows when. It’s embarrassing but true—though I have an actual journal, I still sometimes just snatch up whatever scrap of paper happens to be wandering by at the moment and scrawl down whatever I'm thinking about. The miracle is that those errant chicken scratchings do generally end up getting stuffed into the journal at some point, even if I never look at them again.

Anyway, I opened up the folded pages and immediately found the inspiration for this post. It was not, I’m sorry to say, so salubrious a discovery as Mary McCarthy’s stumbling up on the materials list for her Catline costume in her old Latin grammar book, but since I’m dealing with subjects rather less elevated here, I will have to make do.

And I swear I am not making this up: the pages were covered, front and back, with a list (probably written under the influence) with this heading: “Why I Should be a PBR Coach.”

First of all, I was dumbstruck (and that rarely happens) to realize that this discussion has been going on for so long, because this pencil scrawl has to date to at least last summer and possibly earlier. Second, I was equally amazed to realize a great simple truth: Nothing has changed. Although Montana Barn Cat was been heard several times lately to mutter imprecations about the way the Powers That Be keep mixing things up, I was stunned to realize that nothing that’s been said on the subject in the past nine months has moved the discussion forward one iota. Suffice it to say, kind folks, that I am just as qualified to coach in the PBR as I was the day I grabbed a pen and started writing up my resume.

Since I am sure that many of you, too, are as qualified as I am to fill these important positions, I have to throw my hat in the ring right away, before too many of you catch on to this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. So herewith I offer up my sterling qualifications, recorded so long ago and still as true as the day I first wrote them down.

1. I know the basics as well as anybody. To stick to the back of a bull, all a rider has to do is follow this advice:

a. Tuck your chin;
b. Stick your chest out;
c. Stay out over the front of the bull;
d. Break at the hips;
e. Turn your toes out; and
f. Don’t look off to the side.

So far, so good, right? I guess I haven’t been listening to these guys natter on for nearly 10 years now for nothing. Ah, but there’s more!

2. I know the lingo, which qualifies me not only to coach, but also to talk to the media, if any of its members care to show up. To wit:

a. You got to ride ’em jump for jump;
b. I don’t pay attention to no bull scores;
c. I ain’t never seen that bull before;
d. You got to have your hammer cocked;
e. You got to keep your powder dry; and
f. (a golden oldie) He’s got the try.

I ask you, fellow fans, what else would you possibly need to know? After all, no cowboy in his right mind would conceivably take seriously Adriano’s comment that the riders need at least four coaches. Hell, this crew is so determined to do it themselves that most of them would rather get hung up and stomped half to death daily than PAY somebody to give them advice. Fortunately for me, I have one huge advantage that none of the other candidates have:

3. I’m a girl.

That’s right—it’s a deal-maker, because nobody would even have to KNOW I’m actually a coach. I could just appear to be hanging around the chutes with the other buckle bunnies, though the first guy that calls me that, or the considerably less complimentary “chute bitch,” will get his clock cleaned and no mistake. I’ll even clutch my girly journal to my chest and pretend I’m just there to gather autographs. I’ll be perfectly incognito, I promise.

So what are you waiting for? I’m the complete package! Now’s the time, boys, to step right up and enlist the Stockyard Queen to coach you to the next world championship. The very best part is, if it doesn’t work out, you can always pretend I wasn't coaching you, or if worst comes to worst, point out that I'm a GIRL. This is an offer you can’t refuse.


Shawk said...

I like your style. I think I'll set up a competing coaching gig, where I will offer this additional advice:

a) add flash whenever possible;
b) just ride one bull at a time;
c) keep that free arm moving.

After all, trying is the most important thing, so I think I could try to be a coach just as well as anyone.

Maybe we can have a nonsensical rivalry! Quick, someone put some money up.

Stockyard Queen said...

I am totally, er, annoyed that you have stolen some of my ideas that I was keeping close to the vest, and I hearby challenge you to a non-coaching showdown. Where shall we hold this contest?

Shawk said...

It's a showdown!

Might I suggest the living room of some neutral party who happens to have lots of interesting beverages?

shannon said...

This sounds like a great idea! I may have to start a religious based one because we all know that this is only possible with the good Lord's help. Either that or, since I'm a CA liberal--and you know were all weirdo-hippie-tree huggers out here--I may explore the possibility of "riding by Zen". I mean, you have to keep your chin tucked and not look off to the side, so why not just close your eyes while you're at it and simply feel where the bull is going next?

Random comments:

1. I have a notebook too.

2. Your lingo section reminds me of the scene in Bull Durham where Costner is having Robbins write down the catch phrases for his post game interviews: "This sounds kind of dull." "I know--write it down."

3. This is not meant in any way, shape or form to make you feel like you have to get something posted weekly, but I'm tickled that you are writing again. I miss the humor.

Stockyard Queen said...

It's either that or shaken beer bottles at high noon on The Strip.

Stockyard Queen said...

Shannon, I think your idea is great. Maybe you could establish both religion-based coaching schools and just disguise yourself when you move from one to the other! The Good Lord appears to have abandoned Cody Nance, at least for the past weekend.

Shawk said...

If it's going to be Vegas, I suggest giant plastic guitars with straws, as that seems popular in those parts.

Stockyard Queen said...

S, maybe we can get somebody to manufacture some bull-head shaped paint ball guns for this purpose. Shannon, Bull Durham is one of my all-time faves. And my favorite line (although there are so many to choose from) is: "And stop throwing so many fastballs, it's fascist. Throw a few ground balls, it's more democratic."

Black Boots said...

Ohgawdyes, girl coaches. And I think we could use "Bull Durham" as a serious coaching tool, if for no other reason to be able to say to a bull rider "Rose goes in the front, big guy."

shannon said...

Black Boots, I had put a bite of food into my mouth as I started to read your comment. I just about choked on it laughing. Great scene! I must keep that in mind while I'm watching our riders next week.

Stockyard Queen said...

The whole Fernando V/lava lizard/garter belt part is still hilarious, no how many times I see it.

Stockyard Queen said...

And the part where the Dominican player is looking for a live chicken to take the curse off his glove is great. I better shut up now, I'll recount the whole damned movie if I don't stop.

shannon said...

Don't stress about it SQ--we wouldn't want you to get wooly.

Sorry, I couldn't resist. *g*

Black Boots said...

"I have been known, on occasion, to howl at the moon."

"Honey, we all deserve to wear white."

I steal those two lines All. The. Time.

shannon said...

Every time someone says they open one gift on Christmas Eve, I hear Kevin Costner saying: "I believe in opening Christmas presents Christmas morning, not Christmas Eve." And every time I see a coach with the pitcher and other players on the mound, thanks to Bull Durham, I wonder if they're really discussing baseball.

Anonymous said...

After this w/e in Sacramento maybe you should open a judge coaching school.

Or a commentaters coaching school.

Or an English language coaching school for cowboys! Just at dinner tonight Bud said, "At least Justin McBride doesn't speak like an Okie." And lovely Leah Garcia can congugate--ride, rode, ridden!