Little kids at the barn crack me up

Kids are seriously funny, especially when they don’t mean to be. Like today.

There’s a little guy at our barn who loves to hang on the fence and watch us work our horses. He’s been there for years, from his stick pony days to his current lead-line show career. And he is filled with questions, especially about all things horsey.

So there we were. I was in the outdoor arena, catching some pre-weather schooling time with the mare, as a storm brewed in the distance.

“C’mon, girlfriend,” I said, urging her to bend to the right.

“Why you call your horse girlfriend?” he asked. (Yes, that’s exactly how he said it.)

“She’s a girl. And she’s my buddy,” I answered.

“Well, why you call your horse girlfriend?” he repeated.

“OK,” I said. “You know how your mom calls you Little Man?”

He looked at me in shock, as if I’d just revealed some deep, dark secret. Then he nodded.


“When you really love someone, you come up with special extra names sometimes,” I explained.


He was dead serious. I couldn’t possibly laugh. It’d be so mean. But it was so funny. I had to turn my back for a moment.

“C’mon, girlfriend. Back to work.”

He swung down from the fence and dashed off after the barn dog. Serious discussion over. I totally lost it – out there by myself with my horse.

Public domain photo

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