Palm Springs Rodeo: Chute Doggin’, First Go

Into the chute, calm the animal, check with the chute attendant and agree on a “go” word, left arm over the left horn and under the jaw, left fingers into the animal’s mouth on the right side, a good underhand grip on the right horn, a deep breath, a kind word to the animal, the “go” word to the chute attendant, keep the animal’s head up, keep your feet, out to the line, hear the whistle, turn left, hip into the animal’s shoulder, fall back and dog your steer.

That’s how it should go. I’ve said it to myself a hundred times. I’m not ‘there’ yet, though.

The first go this weekend, I failed to chat with my chute attendant, so she saw a nod, and we were off. The animal was in control, and I was off balance. I lost my footing, and regained it partially, went for a fall, and the bugger shook me off easily. There was always the next day. The good news was that with my only event of the day over, I could take off my number, roll up my sleeves, and have a beer… or 10. I think it was about ten minutes later that I felt a burning sensation on my right, inner ankle. I’d been stepped on, and while there wasn’t any injury to the joint, I felt certain I’d have a bruise.

Sam and Jeremy dressed a goat that afternoon, and it was a blast to watch. That plus all of the pole bending, steer deco, barrel racing, and the rest of the crazy fun that was Hot Rodeo 2008, this weekend in Palm Springs, er, Banning. I’m sure Sam will tell you all about his experience, and I’ll link it here.

That late afternoon, shirtless, sunburned, full of beer, and giddy from watching all of the events, including Sam & Jeremy’s, we headed back to the condo we’d rented in one of the golfier segments of Palm Springs. I turned in with an ice bag on my ankle while Sam took Jeremy out to see more of the town. I rested happily knowing that the two long-separated college buds were having fun, and with the ice on my ankle, I felt like a real rodeo cowboy.

4 Responses to “Palm Springs Rodeo: Chute Doggin’, First Go”

  1. 1 Rob (there's only one)
    Tuesday, May 6, 2008 at 8:09 am

    The mental image is fantastic. And we all know this was one of those ‘life moments’ for you! Is this a new career move–to the rodeo circuit? And can we have more about Sam dressing a goat? (Somehow, I’m envisioning a Sam of Finland theme…on a goat…!)

  2. 2 eric
    Tuesday, May 6, 2008 at 3:22 pm

    I love that Sam dressed a goat, too. Did he dress it as Dolly Parton? or Christian from Project Runway? or, yes, that Goat of Finland idea is a good one, def.

  3. Thursday, May 8, 2008 at 5:41 am

    I went to my first rodeo (bullriding) a few months back to watch a friends other half ride in the annual contest here. The atmosphere is amazing , not too mention the cowboys in all thier gear! HOT. But this guy should be a supermodel, not a bullrider…He was absolutely beautiful to look at.

    He never lasted more than 6 seconds on the bull, but he sure was brave for doing it, as is anyone (YOU). Wish I was there to cheer you on. Hope your ankle isn’t too badily hurt.

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