I’m not responsible for this post, for a couple of different reasons. First, I’m writing it at my desk at work at 5:30 in the morning while waiting for a consultant to finish his voodoo so I can go home. Second, the post pretty much wrote itself late last night…
I was watching rodeo on TV and became amazed at the names of the contestants. I first noticed that there were a larger than average number of Cody’s and Chad’s and Jake’s, but those are not all that uncommon. I also noticed a few clear names that brought the phrase “you ain’t FROM around here, are ya, mister” to mind. Names like Marco Eguchi and Claudio Chrisostomo and Joao Ricardo Vieira. I’m not sure what it says about the standard of living in South America that people are willing to travel from Brazil to Calgary for the dubious opportunity to earn $2,500 by riding on the back of a pissed off 1 ton mammal, but that’s off topic.
Then I started to see the real winners (or losers?) in this contest and it made me sad to realize that these poor fellows had so little free will in their lives. From the moment that their parents christened them their path was clear. Whether their parents did this out of a love of rodeo or in a drunken haze is also off-topic but their reasons for picking the names have no impact on the outcome. I mean, seriously, what other choice in life does Timber Moore have than to be a cowboy? No one would tolerate him trying to get a forestry degree, that’s for sure. Ol’ Timber there doesn’t have it nearly as bad as Dakota Buttar or my personal favorite, Chase Outlaw. Worst name for a cop ever. Mom must’ve found it in a gushy romance novel.
The problem runs through whole families, with entire generations ruined. Take the Crawley brothers, for instance. Seemingly destined to be entomologists* their destiny took a sharp turn when their parents chose Jacobs and Sterling as their given names. From there on, it was saddle bronc ridin’ or nuthin’ for them. Or how about all 3 of the Cooper boys? Clint, Clif, and Tuf, all destined to a life of tie-down roping by a family too poor to afford enough ‘f’s to give them proper names.
A lot of people complain about rodeos, that they’re inhumane and the animals are mistreated. That may be true but before we worry about the health and safety of a horse named Crazy Day Job maybe we should focus on the human tragedy affecting folks like Briggs Madson. Briggs is a competitor in the Boys’ Steer Riding category, so he’s young and it may not be too late for Briggs. All it takes is a lawyer and a change of name form. I think I’ll head out to Calgary and arrange an intervention.
* Bonus! A joke for snobs. What’s the difference between an etymologist and an entomologist? The difference is that the etymologist knows the difference.