Not My Friend Flicka

I have a freakish and completely irrational fear of horses.   It’s called equinophobia … and, believe me, it’s caused relentless teasing by my family and co-workers.  It’s also caused me to have quite a few unforgettable moments.

Like the time I was sightseeing in NY and the cab pulled alongside one of those Cinderella carriages outside Central Park.  Not only did I scream like a 12-year old girl, I leapt out of said moving cab into oncoming traffic.  (At the time, getting mowed down by a transit bus seemed a better alternative than being trampled to death by a horse with sparkly glitter on its mane.) 

Don’t ask me why I’m afraid of horses either.  Like I said – it’s completely irrational.  I figure if avoid horses at all costs — the chances of a horse eating my face off is minimal at best.  But you can never be too sure.

My friends and I went on a white water rafting trip one year.  Imagine my surprise when our cabin turned out to be a “bunkhouse” on a dude ranch.  Ranches = horses.  When we pulled up, I actually peed myself.   I refused to get out of the car until all the horses were tied up.  I didn’t sleep a wink in 72 hours for fear a horse would somehow get inside the house.  In theory, the horse would have had to climb several flights of stairs and broke through a locked door to attack me.  Fortunately, I was perched in the top bunk bed – which I had deftly surrounded with barbed wire.  One can never be too safe. 

The owner of my company, Tamie, owns several show horses.  Seems her teenage daughter has become quite the equestrian show jumper.  She can have it.  Earlier this she when her daughter was thrown off a horse, I was the first to offer to shoot it.  The horse.  Not my boss’ daughter. 

My phobia has gotten so bad, I refuse to watch Westerns.  I refuse to say, “Of course” – because it sounds like “a horse.”  And I will drive out of state if I know there’s a rodeo in town. 

One year at the Iowa State Fair, I drove a golf cart down an embankment to escape the Budweiser Clydesdales.  Seems they were the main attraction at the annual Fair parade.  

I nearly killed two friends riding in that golf cart.  Didn’t matter.  Clydesdales are these giant, freakish, mutant, homicidal horses.   Whatever it took to get away from them, I’d have done it.  The Clydesdales.  Not my friends. 

I will not be going near the Grand Canyon because you have to ride those stupid burros.  Burros will nibble your face off.  Same goes for donkeys.  And mules.  And zebras.  And Shetland Ponies.  

My friends think I’m just being a jackass.  Needless to say, I told them to immediately find another name to call me.   Love me.  Love my phobia.