Sunday, February 20, 2011

This Is Not A Petting Zoo

Good Sunday Morning to you!  Again, let me tell you about all the folks Spring brings around the farm.  This one probably won't surprise you.  Maybe you've done it.  Don't do it again.  Ok?

Remember all of those folks I told you about who love to drop-in at the horse farm?  They just pull into the gate and start talking, or worse, walking around my farm.

A lot of these folks have their little kids in tow.  Now, I call all kids this--even kids I like.  So, don't get the wrong idea.  Kids, in my good natured vocabulary, are all rug monkeys.  You read it right, folks, your kid is a rug monkey in my world.  I call 'em as I see 'em.  Rug monkeys.

In the Spring and Summer, lots of folks like to get out of the house with the rug monkeys.  Those little boogers start driving their parents crazy.  So, they like to bring them to my farm to drive me crazy.

Nope!  Not happening!  I gotcha on this one.  No rug monkeys running loose here.  No, ma'am.  Pick him up and take him back with you.

All small children must be "kept in hand."  It says so in the rules posted in the barn.  That means, you can't let them get out of your reach.

I prefer you not let them go at all.  Those suckers are fast.  They can be under a horse in a minute.  Hold on to them!  I don't care if you've paid me for his big sister to take a hundred lessons.  You must hold on to your rug monkeys here.  It's for their own good.

When folks are loading up the rug monkeys to get out of the house in pretty weather, they want to take 'em somewhere fun.  I don't know why my farm screams fun to these folks, but it does.  I can't tell you how many station wagons and mini-vans wheel into my place.  They're in my gate so much I should charge an entrance fee.

Why?  Why charge a fee?  Because these folks want something for nothing and without signing a release of liability form.  This is a business and you don't get your hands on my horses without signing that form.  This is a business and you don't get something for nothing.  I gotta make some money to feed those horses!

These folks want their rug monkeys to,"Just see the horses.  I just want to sit him up on one.  I just want him to pet 'em."  No!  These folks also do not ever turn into paying customers.  I know.  I've let too many of them see my horses when I was feeling generous.  I learned my lesson.

I cannot give these folks what they want.  Why?  What they want is a free petting zoo.  And, let me tell you something ladies and gentlemen, this ain't no petting zoo!  And, above all else, this place ain't free either.

Yes, I know how to speak proper English.  I have two college degrees.  I'm just throwing in that cowgirl vernacular to give it some flavor.  Now, let's get on with it.

Whatever you think it costs to own and operate a horse farm, multiply it times 10.  Seriously.  I've never had anyone come close to guessing what an expensive addiction a horse farm is.  It would blow your mind.  So, I'm not going to tell you.  I don't want you to hurt your head on a Sunday.  You might miss Sunday dinner that way.

But why? Why won't you let little snot nosed two year old Johnny pet the horsey?  Because snot nosed Johnny is going to put his hand in my horse's mouth and get bit.  My horses aren't bitters usually, but people are always wanting to put their hands in the horse's mouth.  I have no idea why!  If you know, write to me in comments, please!  I'd love to know why it looks like a good idea to put little Johnny's hand in something with such big teeth!

Or, these people want to feed my horses all of the junk food they are giving their fat little rug monkeys.  No!  Horses get sick easily.  I will take care of all of the feeding.  Get away!

Again, why don't you take their money and supervise the rug monkeys?  You could make extra cash doing it.  Charge 'em a buck a pop.   Nope.  You have to have special liability insurance to have a petting zoo.

Petting zoo insurance is really expensive.  Why?  I just told you!  Rug monkeys get bit because they put their grubby little hands in some poor animal's mouth!  Stop asking silly questions.  You sound like your kid.  Would you like me to call you Big Rug Monkey?  No?  Then stop asking silly questions.

Look, if what you want is a petting zoo, go to your local zoo.  Like a real zoo.  Not my farm.  Not another horse farm.  Not your neighbors who don't know who you are, but they happen to have some horses.  No.  Go to the zoo!

The zoo has petting zoo liability insurance.  The zoo has special snacks they'll sell you to feed their animals.  The zoo will be happy to have you visit.  So, go there, please.  This is not a free petting zoo!

Besides, the zoo loves rug monkeys.  Look, they've even got monkeys of their own over there!  Go over and say, "Hi!" to your cousins!  They'll be happy to see you.

Hope you got a little laugh and learned something, too!  Have a beautiful Sunday!  Go to the zoo!  Thanks for reading!

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