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Thursday January 27, 2022
Category: Humor
Hits: 3518

an·ec·dote: A short account of some interesting or humorous incident. (As defined by the American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language.)

Many moons ago I was a bright shiny newly minted Horseshoer, as clean and sharp as my brand new tools. I showed up for my apprenticeship, and one of my first questions to my Master was, "What's the difference between a Horseshoer and a Farrier?" He said "I won't tell you, but I will show you. Be here early tomorrow morning."

I was there early, ready to go. He assigned me on an older mare that was a bit of a "pain in the backside" to work on, but before I started he gave me a big hand full of marbles and said "Put these in your mouth and keep them there." Not one to question my superior, I did. This made it very hard to work, but this horse wasn't going to get the better of me. At one point, while working on a hind foot, the mare gave a kick and sent me flying. When I landed I hit kinda hard, and one of the marbles flew out. That didn't stop me. I got right back up and finished that nag (I mean that fine bred brood mare). Afterward I asked my Master, "Whas th pont offf the mubles?" (I found it very difficult to speak clearly with the marbles, as you may imagine.) He said "Everybody starts out as a horseshoer. After you've lost all your marbles you be a Farrier."

Not coming from a horse family, (my uncle equates "horse" with a type of ration served in WW II,) I had heavy going explaining my career choice during one Thanksgiving. The climax came when I tried to explain to my aunt that I wanted to become a "Farrier." She looked at me seriously and asked, "Are you sure you won't be bored driving that boat back and forth?" (Submitted by Charlie Scrofano)

One day last month my boyfriend and I drove two hours to an out-of-the-way call. We were supposed to sharp-shoe draught horses at a popular ski resort. We arrived on time, set up, and went to work like the well-oiled team we are; him on the forge, me nailing on steel. The owner of the horses was there, a pleasant German man with a noticeable accent. After we were working for about half an hour, he sheepishly asked my boyfriend for help in unscrewing the top of his cappuccino machine. It was stuck fast, and the guys tried several methods of opening it. After a couple of minutes, they gave up. The owner went back into his office, and my boyfriend went back to tend his forge. Suddenly he reached in one of the tool compartments in the back of his truck and withdrew the chain nose twitch, a tool that we rarely use. He went into the office and emerged a moment later with a victorious grin. "Best use yet for that damn thing! Opened it quick as could be!" Apparently the twitch now has a kitchen use, in will soon be appearing in households everywhere. (Submitted by Candace Manuel)

As I was pulling up the driveway to do a customer's horse, I overheard the customer's 7-year old yelling to his dad. I couldn't quite make out what he was saying until I got out of my truck. That's when I heard what the boy had been yelling. The boy was saying, "The fairy's here, the fairy's here!" I think he meant "The farrier's here." The boy is now 12 years old, and we still have a good laugh every time I'm there for a shoeing job. (Submitted by Wayne Butler.)

A friend of mine was one of four guys apprenticing with an older farrier, and one of them had inadvertently cut a little too deep with the hoof knife, so there was some blood present. A woman who was boarding her horse at the stable walked by with her horse and said, "Do you know that horse is bleeding?" to which the subject of this story replied, "Yes, ma'am. We just took a core sample from this horse's foot." The woman gave him a quizzical look and he further expounded on this statement by telling her that farriers do this on request so that the general health and nutritional needs of the horse can be ascertained.

The woman seemed satisfied with the answer and led her horse off to the wash rack. The farrier in charge then said to the apprentice, "Why did you tell her that? Now she's going to come back here and want the same thing done to HER horse!" The apprentice replied that he didn't think anyone could be as gullible as to believe that story, and not to worry about her coming back. Well, about fifteen minutes later the woman returned with her horse, asking that they take a "core sample" from her horse's foot. Needless to say, this left some red faces all around. (Submitted by Andy Wells.)

One day my wife was talking to a friend in a grocery store. When I walked up my wife introduced me, and the friend asked me what I did for a living. Not knowing that the friend knew nothing of horseshoeing or the lingo, I replied "I've shod horses". As I finished the reply I noticed this extremely disgusted look on her face. She then asked me how I could do such a thing. My wife and I looked at each other not knowing what she meant. After about 5 minutes of totally confusing discussion we finally figured out what she was talking about. She thought I said that I shot horses for a living. She was very relieved to know that I wasn't some kind of beast. (Submitted by Jeff Miller.)

I was gassing-up my truck at a filling station, and the high-school-age girl who was washing windows, etc. asked me what a "farrier" did. (I have my name and occupation on the side door of my truck-bed cap). I replied, "I shoe horses." She then said, "Sick ones I hope." I couldn't figure out why she hoped I only shod sick horses until it hit me that she had misunderstood what I had said. I then said, "SHOE. I SHOE horses, not SHOOT!" We had a good little chuckle over the misunderstanding. (Submitted by Andy Wells)

I was at a sale barn one night, when a guy and his wife started talking to me about how he was going to buy his kids a horse. I told him all about the stuff he was going to need. As he started to bid I handed him my card, told him I was a horseshoer, and that I would be happy to shoe the horse on which he was bidding. He called to the man leading the horse and asked to see his feet. He looked and handed my card back. "I won't be needing your services," he said. "This horse already has shoes." (Submitted by Steve Vaughan)

Hello from Australia!

When I was 15, my parents bought my sister and I a pinto pony. He was 13.2hh, and as I found out over time, very smart. I often had to out-think him to get him to do what I wanted. As well as that, he could almost talk. If his fly veil came loose, he would stand at the gate, shaking his head, and stamping his feet, and then would call out to someone to fix it up for him.

Anyway, back on track, the farrier was there to shoe him. He already had one front foot done, and was working on the other one. The farrier was bent over, shaping the shoe, and when he got up, Billabong put his foot on the tripod, by himself. Only problem was, it was the wrong foot. The farrier humoured Billabong, and rasped the front of his shod hoof a little, before trying the shaped shoe on his other forefoot. (Submitted by Kim Hedrich)

I had just finished a day of shoeing in the foothills above my home and was driving down the winding highway back tward my house when I saw a red light flashing in my rear view mirror. One look told me what the problem was. While I thought I had banked my fire before departing, my old homemade coal forge had caught a draft as I was driving and was billowing smoke right out of the chimney as I cruised merrily down the road. The highway patrolman came up to me and asked the usual questions about driver's license, etc., and then began asking me about the forge and how it worked. As I was working trying to put out what fire remained in my firebox I was explaining how I had made it from an old water-heater core and I showed him the firebox and told him that was where I placed the coal. Then I showed him how I put horseshoes in there to heat... That's when he stopped me and started laughing. "A horseshoer," he said, "I thought this was a coal powered truck!" He was laughing so hard he just let me go and never wrote the ticket. (Submitted by Bob Broussard)

Larry had been called out to reset an old gelding for a young girl who was a new client. She had only recently bought this animal, her very first "own" horse. She had been told by the previous owners that he was due for a reset right away, and Larry had been recommended to her by other horsey friends. He had pulled the old shoes, prepared the foot, and went to his truck for the new shoes. As he set the shoe on the hoof to check for correct size, the young girl said, "Are those the only kind of shoes you have?" He told her they were and asked why? She said, "Well, I'd really like him to have 'shiny shoes' like the ones you just took off." After going back to his truck so he could "crack-up" in private and not embarass her too badly, he explained about new shoes and shiny shoes, and assured her that her pet would soon be wearing shiny shoes! (Submitted by Sheryl Skare)

When I first moved to Texas from Southern California, I was amazed to find that my farrier offered me a nice discount. And what was this discount for? For having the horses penned when he arrived, and catching and holding them while they were trimmed. I thought that was pretty funny. I never knew that could be considered optional. (I guess the usual procedure was for the farrier to have to go out into the pasture, catch them himself and then what? Tie them to a tree?) (Submitted by Rose Sylia)

When I got my first horse a year or so ago, I was informed by the previous owner that she was overdue for a trim as she hadn't been done in a year. That alone should have tipped me off, but hey, this was my first horse. And back then I didn't have access to this web site, nor did I even know it existed, so I never considered having a farrier check the horse out. To make a long story short, Skittles (the name says it all too) was a bit skittish about having her feet handled. Once she got used to me, I had little problem handling her feet, but for the farrier to try was another matter. She simply wouldn't stand still for him. Eventually, I suppose in an attempt to wear her out or prove how futile it was to fight, he ended up walking Skittles around him in circles with one arm draped over her back. "You know what this reminds me of?" I asked. "What?" he replied. "A carousel!"

The farrier who shod all the horses at the riding school where I learnt to ride, was a wise and skilful man. He had learnt his trade in the army pre WW1. What he hadn't seen and treated wasn't in the books.

A new pony arrived for the summer. It badly needed shoeing and Mr. Toms on taking the merest glance immediately said, "This pony gets laminitis." He pulled the shoes and whilst he was trimming the feet the owner, a rather large and 'well to do' lady arrived. She stood and watched for a moment or two and then said, "My good man, this pony suffers from lemon slices."

Mr. Toms put the foot down, took his cap off, leant against the pony and scratched his bald head - a sure sign that he was about to have some fun. "Lemon slices, Madam?"

"Yes, my vet said he had lemon slices and had to be specially shod. Do you know what to do?"

"Oh, that sort of lemon slices. Yes, I know the best thing for lemon slices."

"You do? What is that?"

"A bottle of gin and lots of tonic, Madam - that's the best thing to go with lemon slices."

"Why didn't my vet tell me that?"

"Perhaps he doesn't agree with me."

The woman turned and flounced out the stables. She returned a short while later and presented old Mr. Toms with a large bottle of gin and several bottles of tonic.

The only thing that was missing was the lemon slices! (Submitted by Linda Andrews)

I know we all have had those days when everything is going badly and then something happens to erase it all away. It was a real hot summer day in August and the flies had been bad all day. I had sweat off about ten pounds of water weight and could not keep my glasses clean so I could see through them.

I had just finished the second of three horses that I was suppose to do at this stop and the owner had brought out the third for me to work on when her mother yelled out that there was someone on the phone for her. So she asked her mother to come hold the horse.

At this point I should have know that there was something amiss.You see her mother was something of a city girl, and had never been around horses to any great extent. So to say that she was a little nervous about holding the horse was an understatement. But the owner assured her that it was a very quiet horse and that she would have no trouble at all.

At this point she took hold of the very end of the lead rope and nervously held the horse. I also tried to assure her that the horse was very good and would not hurt her. The phone call took more than awhile, so we were about ten minutes into the trimming part of the job. I noticed the mother starting to warm up to this job and she was giving him a little pet on the forehead. It must have been nap time for old Dobbin because about this time he gave out a big yawn and stretched his neck at the same time.

This put a panic into the mother and the last thing I heard her saying as she was running up across the lawn was "THEY GOT TEETH, THEY GOT TEETH," and that was the last I saw of her. (Submitted by Wayne Eastman)

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