The presidential debate on Monday was such an oxygen sucker it’s hard to think about anything else. But so much has been said about it, what can I say that has not already been said?
Besides, I have a different email scandal to discuss. This other great cultural divide of our time threatens to tear apart the very fabric of our society, as email scandals are wont to do.
I am speaking of the burning dilemma of horse poop in the grocery store. More specifically, horse people dragging horse poop into the grocery store.
A recent email from a mysterious woman named ‘Cathy Hunter’ (who may or may not be fictional) rants about this very phenomenon in an email that is currently making the rounds on the interwebs.
The provenance of this email is uncertain as it may or may not have been deleted from a private server. It could possibly be the work of Russian hackers, working to destabilize our democracy by dividing us against ourselves.
In the provocative email, Ms. Hunter calls out the horse people in her neighborhood who grocery shop directly after mucking out stalls and drag bits of mystery muck into the store, which she as a shopper, finds offensive and unsanitary. Whether it is horse poop as she suspects, or maybe only mud, she is tired of it and isn’t going to take it any more. She concedes that she does live in the country, but even there, a higher level of decorum should be observed. She is offended, incensed and demands change.
The horse folk struck back fast and hard, as one would expect. There is nothing that horse people love better — besides their horses, which they love most of all — than to be misunderstood by non-equestrians. Nothing binds them together like an attack from the other side of the aisle, as it were.
This lack of understanding, and the inevitable oppression it brings, is taken as a point of pride so it should come as no surprise that the blowback and counter-attacks directed at Ms. Hunter were swift, fierce and merciless.
Dozens of equestrians came forward immediately to stand stronger together with the anonymous horse person who had so egregiously offended the dainty Ms. Hunter.
Some offered Ms. Hunter advice for dealing with what they felt was a non-issue. “Suck it up, Buttercup,” being the most popular of those bits of wisdom. That is natural, as horse riders are used to hearing this from their coach after a bad ride in a show or after a fall that results in only minor injuries, like breaking unimportant bones that don’t require setting, such as ribs or toes.
Others, being more compassionate, offered to let Ms. Hunter walk in front of them so as not to offend her delicate sensibilities. A cynical person might say that compassion, though sincere, was mixed with a bit of condescension and possibly even scorn. When tempers run high, anything is possible.
But not one single horsey American was willing to sacrifice even the smallest bit of their constitutional right to open-carry poop into a grocery store. What a nonsensical thing to suggest. The merchandise sold there is grown in poop. Especially the upscale, organic variety. Poop doesn’t hurt people. People do.
Personally, I love to strut about in my riding clothes because, quite honestly, I look so spiffy in them, and as many people as possible should get a chance to see me. After all, at my age, I don’t feel spiffy very often. Consequently, I almost always stop by the grocery store after going for a ride. Coming home from a horse show, I stopped at all of them. And most of the dollar stores, too. And anything else that was open.
Until reading Cathy Hunter’s scathing email, I had no idea of the trail of offense and disgust I was leaving behind me. I had no idea that people could be offended by the aroma of horse sweat and barn muck. Like everybody else who loves horses, I think it’s a great smell. It’s a terrific smell. The comfort that smell brings me is huge. Since everyone around me feels that way, it came as quite a shock that others felt so differently. How is that possible?
I thought the constipated looks I was getting in the grocery store — you know, the pinched up noses and squinty eyes — were due to jealousy of my riding boots, not due to any loose debris those boots might be emitting as I sauntered along.
Back when America was great, no one would have thought twice about a little horse poop being dragged into a store. It was just the way things had always been. And therefore was the way things should be.
We have grown so soft. Frankly, I fear for our country and its future.
Reach Bill Colvard at 336-415-4699 or on Twitter @BillColvard.