05 January, 2009

Of Ponies and Beer

JeffreyD writes:
Of course I love you! Tell me about the pony and what kind of beer your drink. (smile)
And with incentive like that, how could I not share the story of the Day My Pony Drank Beer?

First, a brief word about my pony. He was a white Welsh who was my exact height, age and stubbornness. His previous owners had also spoiled him rotten. They went so far as to share their food with him, which is not exactly the best thing to do when equines are concerned.

We eventually broke him of bad habits like running for the barn, getting down for a good roll whilst you were still astride, and demanding cheeseburgers (yes, cheeseburgers. And yes, he actually ate them). However, we hadn't quite broken him of begging. Did I say begging? Demanding, more like. If he saw something he wanted, he didn't give you the soulful eyes and the meaningful nudges. He didn't try a cute routine. He'd just barge right in and take what he wanted. Such as the time when he walked into the house because we were taking too long washing his carrots.

One day, a bunch of us were standing around in his pasture talking. My dad was drinking a beer. I can't remember if it was Budweiser or Coors - my dad would drink whatever piss-thin American brew was on sale at the grocery store. This was back in the days before they tried to make Coors and Bud seem fancy, which should tell you how old my pony and I are.

Chipper somehow got it into his head that if Dad was drinking beer, he needed some, too. It turns out that it's very hard to drink your beer when a thirteen-hand pony is trying to get his head in the can. They went through a five-minute comedy routine where my dad would push him away, and Chipper would crowd right back in.

Finally, my dad says, "You really want beer? Here." And he poured a bit of beer in his hand.

Chipper drank the beer with considerable glee. And then he paused, smacking his lips a bit, then staggered across the paddock as if we'd hit him between the ears with a sledgehammer. His head swung side-to-side, his legs churned in all different directions, and when he finally reached the far end he just stood there for a moment with his head down, shuddering occasionally.

I'd like to think my pony's not the kind of lightweight who gets drunk off a handful of beer, but I know it wasn't the carbonation that shocked him, because his previous owners used to let him drink Coke. We'll chalk his adverse reaction up to astonishment at how truly awful cheap American beer tastes.

Funny thing. He never asked for beer again. Which is fortunate, because I'm not sure how we could have explained an alcoholic pony to PETA.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks Dana.

I read you for the political stuff, but I enjoy the human, or pony, touch as well. Hope the pony, and you, stay happy and healthy.