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I surpassed my mom’s intensity of watching gymnastics with my intensity of watching the equestrian games. My raving antics won because I wasn’t even watching the sport I did. Luckily I was watching with my mom so she thought it was funny. Anyone else would have thought I was psychotic and a risk to other people. I just continue to prove why I will never be a sports commentator. I’m the opposite of Tim Daggett. He’s very nice, encouraging, and always has something positive to say. I’m sarcastic, wondering how they got to this level with their fantastic natural ability to choke and make the fundamental mistakes most children punish themselves for doing.

Mom used to do a running commentary when we’d watch gymnastics, often her inner monologue on the outside. The funny thing was she didn’t realize she was doing it.

“I thought she did well,” my brother or I would say.

“She did a very nice job,” Mom would say.

“You just said her toes of iron saved her life and that’s the only way she stayed on.”

I am her daughter but I honestly didn’t think that side would come out watching the show jumping finals. Honestly. I did dressage which is not jumping but some things translate over like not hanging onto the horse’s mouth for dear life. You hold your reins so you have contact with the horse. Your hands are not behind your hips with you wondering why this animal isn’t slowing down. Heels are down, not your toes. Small huge things most people learn when they’re learning how to ride, not representing their country in international competition.

Ninety percent of errors in riding are rider errors (caused by the rider). Yesterday I’d bump that up to ninety-five percent. At some points, the horse had its stride, had its rhythm, so the rider checked them before take off causing the horse to hit the rail. Horses know what they’re doing. Leave them alone and we’ll all get home.

I don’t like watching horse sports and wondering if the duo is going to make it in one piece because the rider is out of control. There is going for it and leaving it all in the arena, absolutely. You don’t leave the horse in the arena. The commentators said this one partnership had known each other for a while…the horse didn’t like the rider. The horse didn’t know how the rider was getting home and he didn’t care. It was a ticked off horse.

Today was supposed to be dressage, my sport. I offered to open the store so I wouldn’t watch. I got that upset over a sport I didn’t do, I didn’t want to see what I’d do with my sport. Joke was on me: they only showed it on cable.

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