Saturday, March 17, 2012

What's in a Name

One of our dear friends just bought a new horse, a good looking gelding paint that came with the name Waco.  Not a bad name, Waco, in my estimation.  Any city that just produced the reigning Heisman Trophy winner can’t be all bad, right? 

But Waco was not a name the paint’s new owner was able to warm up to.  In an effort to assist, a herd of alternate names was quickly rounded up by the local experts.  Several bold suggestions did not survive the first cut, however, because of a theory endorsed around these parts that says a horse adopts a behavior associated with its name.  

In other words, according to those who live under my roof and spend more time with horses than I do, “Buddy” is indeed a great pal of a horse.  The name just fits. “Natural Disaster” was, they say, a big ol’ accident-waiting-to-happen kind of horse.  And so on.

I don’t know if I fully buy into the theory or not.  But I have noticed that some horse names can spur me to certain behaviors on a regular basis.  When we participate in evening bring-in at the barn, for example, Lilly the crazy-eyed mare can almost always count on me yammering like Harvey Korman in Blazing Saddles as I slip the halter around her neck:  “Lilly, Lilly, Lilly.”  I’m able to readily identify Walker, the black gelding with two white socks, because a walker needs socks, right?  And for reasons I’m sure would justify professional help, I find myself slipping into Edith Bunker voice each time I go out to bring in the chestnut gelding, Archie.

I suppose there is a chance that this horse-portrays-its-name theory holds some validity.  If so, I opined on the way to the barn recently, I’ve got the perfect name for our next horse.  A name that would make stall clean-up fun and profitable.  Poops Gold Nuggets.

Our friend, by the way, decided to name her new paint Hank.  Outstanding.


  1. Dear Horse Dad,
    You've come so far in your horse intellect, I hate to burst your bubble, but Archie is in fact a bay not a chestnut gelding. We'll do some work on indentifying coat colors soon.
    Horse Mom