Every year, Roman and I take Sophia to the rodeo. It’s our summer tradition.

It’s loud, smelly (which we strangely like), scary, funny.  It’s a simple family outing that packs a punch. 

For me, the rodeo is a bit different. It’s a time for reflection. I swear, I find the oddest places to “connect” with my inner self. Nevertheless, there is something to be said about being face-to-face with a bull, standing meekly ‘neath the brow of the beast, I suppose.  I’m nearly hypnotized by its fierceness, determination.

In the moment, I’m reminded of who I am and what I’m capable of. 

I found this writing below and have kept it, shared it and returned to it several times.  I took the picture of the cowboy on this page, and I think it marries so well to the sentiment of this writing, and to my point of self reflection, staying grounded, remembering what’s really important. 

And it was a bonus that his collar was popped...like a boss.

Cheers to the beast! ...and to this old man...

Advice from A Wise Old Man

-Your fences need to be horse-high, pig-tight and bull-strong.

-Keep skunks and bankers at a distance.

-Life is simpler when you plow around the stump.

-A bumble bee is considerably faster than a John Deere tractor.

-Words that soak into your ears are whispered… not yelled. 

-Forgive your enemies; it messes up their heads.

-Do not corner something that you know is meaner than you.

-It don’t take a very big person to carry a grudge.

-You cannot unsay a cruel word.

-Every path has a few puddles.

-When you wallow with pigs, expect to get dirty.

-The best sermons are lived, not preached.

-Most of the stuff people worry about ain’t never gonna happen anyway.

-Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.

-Live a good, honorable life… Then when you get older and think back, you’ll enjoy it a second time.

-Don‘t interfere with somethin’ that ain’t bothering you none.

-Timing has a lot to do with the outcome of a Rain dance.

-If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop diggin’.

-Sometimes you get, and sometimes you get got.

-The biggest troublemaker you’ll probably ever have to deal with, watches you from the mirror every mornin’.

-Always drink upstream from the herd.

-Lettin’ the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin’ it back in.

-If you get to thinkin’ you’re a person of some influence, try orderin’ somebody else’s dog around..

-Don’t pick a fight with an old man. If he is too old to fight, he’ll just kill you.

-Most times, it comes down to common sense.