Yesterday, The Husband and I decided to venture out into the cold and go to the Black Hills Stock Show. We wandered around and looked at the vendor exhibits. We saw acres of boots, hats, tack, cowboy winter gear, cowgirl bling, squeeze chutes, new cars and stock trailers, toy tractors, real tractors, supplements for animals and humans, shoe polish, floor polish, massage chairs, western art and more.
At the toy tractor booth, The Taterbug felt obligated to explain why she wasn’t at school (homeschooled). Later, at another booth, The Taterbug lost a tooth that’s been loose for weeks. While I was paying for some cute little girl headbands, she just had to tell the vendor about her tooth. And then of course, the vendor asked her if the Tooth Fairy was going to leave money under her pillow that night. Boodie loudly informed her that the Tooth Fairy isn’t real, so of course The Husband felt obligated to explain that we don’t do the Tooth Fairy at our house.
One booth that we wandered past was selling books of cowboy poetry and western-themed religious paraphernalia. The Husband and our daughters were a little bit ahead of me, and as I caught up to them, he asked “I don’t know, do we like cowboy poetry?”. Which was code for “do you like cowboy poetry, because we both know that I don’t like cowboy anything“. I replied, as tactfully as possible (it was obvious that the vendor was hoping to send us off with a book), that no, we really aren’t into cowboy poetry. And then the vendor’s sidekick asked “are you city slickers?” as if to imply that only a city slicker would come to the stock show and not appreciate cowboy poetry. It was so hard not to fall down laughing!
As it happens, my daughters are the 4th (possibly 5th) generation on this ranch (located 461 miles from the nearest IKEA, and 100 miles from the nearest Walmart). We raise beef cattle for a living, but we are just now cowboys.
The Husband is not fond of horses, finding his Honda ATV to be more trustworthy and cheaper to feed. He does not own a cowboy hat, or chaps, and Wranglers do absolutely nothing for him. His typical going-out-in-public outfit is round-toed boots, blue jeans with tassels on the belt loops, a t-shirt and a black cap with Hebrew letters on it. He is a reformed metal head and can’t stand to listen to country music (which I love). As I type this, The Husband is practicing Tae Kwon Do with The Taterbug and Boodie. We’re not likely to be seen at a rodeo, ever. Our literary tastes run toward the Bible, Science Fiction and Jane Austen.
Then the same vendor asked if the girls had gotten to pet the piglets at the petting zoo. Boodie wrinkled up her little nose and said in disgust, “Pigs are pork!” That left the poor woman speechless. Her sidekick burst out laughing at the small child stating the obvious. At that point, I began to herd the kids out of there before The Husband felt obligated to make a statement of faith in the middle of the Stock Show.
I truly don’t mind being weird (it seems normal to me), but it does get old trying to explain our particular brand of weirdness to strangers.