A Mad Bumblebee On Crack

by Jake Hershey on March 3, 2013


I went to a heck of a good ranch rodeo last night.  There were 25 or more teams and more real handy cowboys and horses than I’ve seen gathered in one spot for quite awhile.  If memory serves me right none of the first five teams out in the first event, which was trailer loading, were longer than 45 seconds.  That’s not much time to sort a numbered yearling out of a herd of 20, drive it across the line, rope it, drag into a catch trailer at the other end of the arena, take the rope off, get everyone but the yearling out of the trailer and shut the gate.  It takes longer to write it than it did many of the teams to do it.  Like I said, there were some sure enough handy men and horses entered up.

But alas, no matter how handy you and your horse are there’s always the potential for a pretty good wreck when 4 cowboys, 4 horses, 4 ropes and any number of cattle are involved in accomplishing a task…especially when that task is also a timed event.

The stray gathering was the last event.  Two yearlings are turned out and pushed across a line which starts the clock to ticking and at which time it’s up to the team (again consisting of 4 cowboys, 4 ropes and 4 horses) to rope both yearlings, tie their legs up and take the ropes off, at which time the clock stops. 

I was standing by a buddy’s vendor table trying to swap him out of a pair of handmade chihuahua spurs when I happened to look out into the arena and here’s what I saw.  A cowboy roped one of the yearlings at the southwest corner of the arena.  About the same time another cowboy roped the other yearling in the southeast corner of the arena.  This left two cowboys to either heel the yearlings or get off their horses and wrestle them to the ground.  One of the two cowboys left was sitting on his horse in the southwest end, but was facing the action going on in the southeast end…so he bailed off his pony and took off running to the right.  The other cowboy who didn’t have one caught was on the southeast end of the arena, but happened to be facing the action as it happened on the southwest end…..you guessed it.  He bailed off his pony and took off running to the left.  Please pause and take a moment to picture all of this in your head…and realize that it all happened in the course of about 6 seconds.  So there are two yearlings with ropes around their neck that are tied on to cowboy, horse and saddle.  Those yearlings are running, jumping and kicking in every direction like a mad bumble bee on crack.  Meanwhile, two cowboys are on foot, running from opposite directions to put their hands on them.  The cowboy running from left to right made it to his target without a problem.  The cowboy running from right to left wasn’t so lucky.  With his eyes fixed on what he was after like a lion on a gazelle, he took off running to his left.  He failed to notice that there was a mad bumble bee on crack tied to a string just slightly to his right.  About the time the cowboy was doing his best impression of an Olympic sprinter at full speed, the other yearling on his right cut in front of him and the rope it was attached to came tight…really tight.  The cowboy was so focused on what he’d decided he was after that he never saw it coming.  He took a clothesline about mid chest that would have made Hulk Hogan proud.  That’s actually a good analogy.  If you’ve ever seen a WWE wrestler get clothes lined, they over dramatize the effect by throwing their feet completely out in front of themselves and landing square on their back, without even attempting to break their fall.  That’s exactly what this cowboy looked like, except he wasn’t attempting to be overly dramatic at all.  Everyone who saw it happen gave a collective “OOOOHHHHH”.  In true cowboy fashion he bounced right back up, ran to the yearling and got it tied.

Sometimes in life we allow ourselves to get so focused on what we want that we quit paying attention to everything else going on around us.  Our faith, marriage, children, careers, etc., are neglected until “WHAM!” we get knocked on our butt ‘cause we weren’t paying attention.  The bible promises that if we’ll pay attention to God and take care of what’s really important we’ll always be named top hand.  If we don’t, “WHAM!” 

You can bet your life on that.  Are you willing to?     

“The Lord will make you the head, not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the Lord your God that I give you this day and carefully follow them, you will always be at the top, never at the bottom.”  Deuteronomy 28:13


Jake Hershey 3/3/13

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