I was at a Christmas party last night and it somehow came up that I’ve ridden a bull before. Twice. I haven’t thought about it in years. It was back in college at the vet school fraternity’s annual rodeo. I was heavily inebriated in both instances. I thought I’d put a picture on the blog so I don’t have to tell the story over and over again.
The first year, I managed to stay on for maybe two seconds (the second year, I barely made it out of the gate). I remember the cowboy at the bull pen casually saying as he helped me tie my left hand to the bull, “when you hit the ground, you better hit it running.” Then I remember holding my right hand high in the air in a display of iconic bravado while whispering “go.” The only thing I recall from that point on was that the bull greatly resented being ridden like a horse. He bucked and brayed like crazy, my other hand quickly grabbed onto the rope, and I was flung through the air like a rag doll.
As I hit the ground, I heard the crowd let out a collective “ooh” and I was over the fence in less time than I had been on the bull. The rodeo clowns were giggling loudly and I overheard one of them say, “he’s ridin’ ’em Mexican-style.” I don’t know what that means, but I’m pretty sure it’s an insult. When I got back to my cluster of friends, they said the bull had tried to gore me with his horn and barely missed. Instead, he left a big streak of bullsnot on my back.
In case you’re wondering, they don’t just let any idiot walk up and hop on a bull. You have to show up a week early, sober, to sign a bunch of forms and pay a fifty dollar registration fee. Well, I guess it’s more accurate to say that they will let any idiot hop on a bull, just as long as that idiot pre-registers.