Friday, March 13, 2009


Horse fact: Horses are big. Except those little pet horses some people keep in their houses. Not sure why. One of the good things about living indoors is that you usually don't get up in the morning without your glasses on and step in a pile of horse manure. Maybe the little horses can be box trained. You'd think if little horses could be box trained, the big ones could, too, and it would be a lot more fun to march in parades.

The best miniature horses are the size of hamsters. You can keep them in an aquarium, where they roll in the cedar chips and run in a little horse wheel. The only problem is that they keep you up at night with their high-pitched clippety-clopping.

Another horse fact: The earliest horse fossil is Eohippus. A very romantic name—it means "dawn horse." They were small. Had three toes on their back feet, four on the front. As zillions of years went by, the horses got bigger. All the toes but the middle ones got shorter. Toenails thickened into hooves. After a while you get to mid-afternoon horse, which spent most of its time sleeping after a big meal of oats and carrots.

Eohippus was an overachieving little bastard. Up at dawn, running all over the place before mid-afternoon horse had even rolled out of bed to leave a pile of road apples on the rug for you to step on.

Eventually you get the modern horse. Equus caballus. The ones that live outside the house. The ones that first galloped around in herds on the steppes of Kazakhstan and Tuva.

At first people milked them and ate them. Then someone got the idea—sitting around the fire drinking a big mug of fermented mare's milk, nibbling on a horse shank, said, "Y'know, I've been thinking. Maybe we could get these horses to drag stuff around for us."

"Like how do you mean?" said the guy across the campfire.

"Well, supposing we wanted to move this rock here to over there."

"Why would we want to do that?"

"I don't know. Bear with me here. Maybe it looks better over there."


"So we could tie the rock to one of these horses, then have it drag the rock over."

"Riiiight. I've got a better one—how 'bout you just climb up on one of those horses and let it drag you around."

"You know, that's not half a bad idea."

"Yeah, right."

"You saying I couldn't do it?"

"Yeah, I'm saying you couldn't do it."

"How much?"


"How much are you saying I couldn't do it? Enough to make it interesting?"

"Sure. I'll bet, let's see... I'll bet you a keg of fermented mare's milk you can't get up on that mare over there and have her carry you around."

"You're on."

So the guy goes over. Pats the horse on the side. Puts his arms around her neck. Tries to heave one leg up over her back, and off she goes. Drags him around in a big circle and dumps him in a pond.

This is horse humor.

Other kinds of horse humor: Taking a big horse dump on the rug next to your bed, then going down to the phone booth down on the corner and calling you up. You jump out of bed and step right in the pile. Snatch the up phone. "Hello!"

A horsy voice on the other end says, "Do you have Prince Albert in a can?"

"Who is this?" you say.

"Is your refrigerator running?" says the voice.

"Goddammit!" you say.

"Stepped in anything interesting lately?" says the voice. Then a bunch of whinnying.

You slam down the phone. Wonder why you ever got one of those miniature horses in the first place. All it does is raid the cereal cabinet and play stupid practical horse jokes. These usually involve leaving a pile of manure in an inconvenient place. The middle of the kitchen floor, right before the big dinner party. The middle of the living room floor, right before the big cocktail party. At the foot of the bed the first time you get that new girlfriend into it.

The next time around you'll be sure to get one of the hamster-sized ones, or maybe a goldfish.


  1. I'm in for one miniature miniature horse. I want to keep it in my pocket. Welcome to the Blogoshpere.

  2. or maybe a virtual iHorse, that takes a virtual crap in your virtual Inbox just when you're trying to call someone...