Monday, December 17, 2007

Christmas: It's a Black Eye Affair

Our annual family Christmas party is coming up this weekend, and it's sure to be a doozy. I believe the last head count for the number of people attending was at 52. That's some potluck and gift exchange, huh? Something tells me we'll be unwrapping gifts until dawn. And even though it's not being held at my house or my parents' place-- both of which are horse property-- horses will, no doubt, be part of the conversation. Why? Well, a short time ago I recounted how I took a tumble off my mare, Lexi, and ended up with a black eye and a hideous scrape on the side of my face. If you missed that glorious episode, it's right here:

And Then I Fell Off

I thought I was pretty much healed until yesterday. So much so that I decided I didn't need to coat my face with concealing face powder (L'Oreal Warm Beige seems to conceal bruises best, for those of you keeping tabs for future reference). Then I stopped by the tack store and the clerk says to me, "Wow, how did you get that shiner?"


Not to be outdone, my sister is now sporting two black eyes. And yes, it's due to an encounter with a horse.

Apparently Jill was holding her Thoroughbred, Topper, for the farrier. Being a mouthy, antsy-pantsy ex-racehorse, Topper was chewing on his leadrope and flapping his lips to express his boredom with the whole shoeing scenario. Exasperated, Jill yanked on Topper's lead rope. He over-reacted (guilty conscience, no doubt) and flipped his head up and back, thereby whacking Jill in the forehead with the lead rope's heavy brass snap. Two days later and trust me, she looks like a raccoon. Or a panda. It's quite dramatic. As her husband described it, "She has an interesting sort of Goth look going on."

Of course, I see it as some sort of wicked instance of seasonal sibling rivalry. To put it in the parlance of poker, it's like my sister telling me, "I'll meet your scabbed cheek and shiner and raise you two black eyes."

This is going to surpass another Christmas, about a dozen years ago, when my sister, our mother and I each had an arm in a sling thanks to tumbles off of horses. That elicited quite a bit of talk around the buffet table at the family party: Us and our crazy horses. This year won't be any different. Maybe my sister can wear her sunglasses inside and I can cake on the L'Oreal.

I'd love to hear any tales you'd like to share. Just click on "comments" below or email me at

1 comment:

Kelli said...

I feel your pain (literally). I always seem to find myself in a situation where the outcome is usually a bruise, scrape, or massive headache.