Sunday, October 10, 2010

In this episode- the horse doesn't die...

I was a geeky kid- at least looking back now it might seem that way. But then- like now- I really didn't care.
You know I love racing. It is one of my guilty pleasures. Watching a horse run is breathtaking and frightening all at the same time. The heart of a horse is an awsome thing.

Disney makes horse movies. I love horse movies. Perfect. I went to see Secretariat last night.
I can't say it was the most wonderful horse movie ever made, I think Seabiscuit actually fit into that catagory- but I loved it just the same. It was pure Disney and if you have ever seen a Disney horse movie you'll know what I mean.
Run Appaloosa Run
The Horse with the Flying Tail
The Horse in the Grey Flannel Suit
The Miracle of the White Stallions

Lots of meaningful dialog from the star power about how wonderful or brave or beautiful their horse is and why the fact of their being that way lifts them to a higher plain. Inter-cut with slow-mo shots of the horse running and the gratitudous 'soulful eye' shots.

Now you may think I am mocking the movie- I am not. I get chills along my arms just like everyone else.
As Lil Mama said to me last night- "When the horses are running, I can feel those horses," she laid her hand over her heart," it is just such a deep seated part of me, their breathing is like my own."
And I agree. We lucky few who have horses in our lives have the luxury of gazing into our own horses soulful eyes any time we want. I do it frequently without thinking about it- trying to discern his mood. Is he frightened today? Mad? Lazy? Does he 'get it' today? I'm not looking for the magic there- I'm looking for answers.
Our muscle memory feels those horses beneath us as we watch the film. I am there in the starting gate, the horses snorting breath ringing in my ears. My legs flex, my fingers tighten on the reins...the bell rings and I am off... 

But back to me being a geeky kid.
I remember watching Secretariat run, on TV of course. I wish I could have seen him in person. He had charisma,no doubt. I carried that Time magazine of him in his blue checked hood around with me, tucked in among my History text and Social Studies books. It was dog eared and tattered, but I took it out every chance I got just to reread that article, and look at his proud face. I think my Mom must have finally thrown it out because it is not in my things any more. I loved that horse as if he were my own. When I  moved out of my house I stabled my horse at the track in Santa Rosa. I had a chance to put my QH gelding into the starting gate and race him around the track. I pretended I was Secretariat then. Not Man o War,or Whirlaway or Bold Ruler,but Secretariat.

There have been a lot of horse races between then and now. I get a thrill watching any horse run. But for a few of you that weren't alive then ( I know you are out there!) here is a clip of the most amazing horse race ever recorded. And do yourself a favor and go see the movie. The horse dosen't die.