View From the Backside

by Barry Denton

View From the Backside

Holy Crap & Other Religious Overtures

by Barry Denton

My grandfather was a great philosopher and taught me many things of great use in my life. This quaint Irishman that I grew up around was neither quiet nor quaint. He was small, wiry, hard as nails, and always had an opinion. Besides that he was short, had a bald head, pointy ears, and a pointy nose. He never went with the crowd and valued freedom above all else.

One thing about it is you always got an honest opinion whether you wanted one or not. He was great fun as he was a leprechaun that could make smoke come out of his ears and pull a fifty cent piece out of yours.

I remember the day well when I was five years old, my grandfather was shoeing a horse and I was handing him his tools. At the same time I handed him a rasp the horse jerked and he dropped it handle first on my big toe. It really hurt so I started to cry. My grandfather told me not to cry when I got hurt, but to get mad instead.

While he was trying to get me to think about something besides my aching toe he taught me how to get mad when something hurt me. The first thing he said was you need to learn some swear words. The first thing he taught me was “Son of a B….h”. He would say the phrase and then he would have me repeat it. Each time I repeated it I had to use more gusto. Finally after about the tenth time I was growling it. He told me to remember that next time I got hurt and I would feel better much quicker by swearing than by crying.

The only warning he gave me was not to let the women hear me say it. He said women had a tendency to capture and cure you of it. I asked him why I couldn’t say it around women and he explained that women were not part of the secret club.

Of course, I asked him what the secret  club was. He said that he had discussed this matter with God and it was only for men and boys. My grandfather continued to explain that he had gotten a pass from God for men and boys that are working with livestock.

Now, I was glad that I belonged to the secret club that had a pass on swearing. I was also glad that my grandfather knew God well enough to negotiate a contract with him. He also stressed to me that it could only be used in extreme situations such as when a twelve hundred pound horse was standing on your foot or a mad mother cow was mowing you down.

Cheese and rice was another catch phrase I learned to use early on. Needless to say I was quite proud of my new found secret club.

About a month went by and the new formula was working quite well. When I got upset about something I started getting mad instead of crying. I liked it a whole lot better and my grandmother was quite astonished at the sudden change.

All you serious Christian cowboys and girls, don’t get me wrong here. I’m not condoning swearing. I am merely pointing out that God probably has a sense of humor about it. If he did not have a sense of humor he would not have created cowboys or horseshoers. They themselves are a very funny lot.

Think about some big time preachers that you know of. Say you had the Pope at your fall works and he was mounted on some colt that was pretty good, but bucked once in awhile. The Pope is out there roping a few calves one morning and dragging them to the fire.

The Pope has been sitting chilly and getting by on that colt pretty well. Both of them are even starting to relax a little. When he gets to the seventh one that morning the calf doubles back and gets the rope under that colts tail. Of course, off they go bucking across the flat.

The Pope is now pulling leather with one hand, but his other is froze to the dallies. Certainly a good cowboy would have gotten rid of his dallies on the first jump, but the Pope is pretty green as there are not many cattle at the Vatican anymore. Pretty soon that old colt is bogging his head so low that he ejects the Pope, but his dallies come loose and wrap around his arm. When he hits the hard rocky ground and the cactus, just what is he saying? Does it dawn on him to say prayers or is he temporarily in the state of anti prayer as most cowboys would be?

Here is another true scenario for you to think about. I’m just substituting Billy Graham for the guy that this really happened to. Say you are at a thoroughbred farm putting training plates on yearlings for the first time and you have Billy Graham helping you.

Now Billy doesn’t shoe a lot of horses so you have him handing you tools that first day. Remember that thoroughbred yearlings are normally about sixteen hands tall and pretty waspy when they first bring them out of the pasture. I have had them kick the nippers out of my hand with a back foot when I’ve been working on a front foot. I’ve also had them kick my hat off. They are long legged and quicker than anything you have ever seen. I’m working on a hind foot and ol’ Billy is in front of me handing me tools.

In the blink of an eye that colt jerks his foot away from me, throws me forward, and nails Billy in the private area. He is unable to speak for a long time, but what words and phrases are going through his mind in regard to the colt? Is he cursing or forgiving?

I have every respect for the Pope and Mr. Graham and they are truly fine examples of human beings. However, my contention is, have they ever been subjected to livestock on a daily basis? Do they know about the pact with God and the secret club? Hopefully this holy crap has brought you some answers in your life.