For reasons that I can not even begin to fathom involving the husband, people on his pool team, and their step-daughter, Prize had a photo shoot today. Apparantly the girl is/was a senior in high school and the husband reported that she loves horses and wanted her senior pictures taken with a horse. I found it weird that senior pictures be taken with a horse when she doesn’t have a horse but the husband does tend to jumble messages at times. So I set up a time to make Prize pretty and pose for pictures with the girl who loves horses. I got further confused when the scheduling does not include a photographer. But I played along. They came today.

Now there was the husband’s pool friend, her step-daughter who loves horses, the pool friends’ daughter, and the daughter’s 4 kids under the age of 6. At least I think that’s how the relationships worked out but I’m not entirely sure. I brought Prize out. The girl who loves horses immediately tells her stepmother that she absolutely needs to have her buy her a horse. I lead Prize over to the designated photo area. The stepmother then tells me that we need my camera. In the spirit of playing along, I send her into the house for the camera. I guess I’m now the photographer. Good thing I watch a lot of America’s Next Top Model.

Prize is on her absolutely best behavior. I hand her over to the girl who loves horses who suddenly is absolutely terrified. Seems that she loves horses in the abstract not in the flesh. The pictures start with Prize looking interestedly at a terrified girl and then quickly move to Prize looking bored and the girl still looking terrified. No draping her over the horse ala the elephant challenge on the last cycle of the America’s Next Top Model.

Defeated by terrified girl I moved to the grandkids. There were two girls ages about 3 and 6. I got pictures of them kissing the horse. They weren’t terrified. Then they wanted to see Spirit. He dutifully let them pet him. They asked if he liked to be kissed. I smiled beautifically and said that he loved it. In truth he’d rather be dipped in a vat of boiling oil but he was distracted by the sight of the two littlest kids in a double stroller. Over the years he had run away from many strollers on show grounds (just before they were about to eat him, of course) but double strollers came into vogue after his show career was over. Staring dumbstruck at the monstrosity made him hold still for more kisses than expected.

Then as he was going back into his stall the 3 year old asked to ride a horse. Now, Prize would be the logical choice. After all Spirit hasn’t been ridden in years – his choice, not mine. But I was still holding Spirit. Besides, Prize truly wouldn’t have minded and I do love me some Spirit-torture.

The mother put the kid on Spirit’s back. When he realized what was about to happen he dipped his back down as if he expected acid to drop onto it instead of a small child. He also started yelling, “Oh god! Oh god! It’s touching me!!!!!!” But he never moved his feet. He was grinding his teeth and giving me the evil eye and not breathing but he never moved. Even the most hard-assed horses have soft spots for little kids. Me he’d like to kill about now.

The dog, cat, and bird all had turns with the two girls. Every animal was petted and some were force fed. Every one seemed to breathe a sigh of relief when they left. I don’t have the heart to tell them all that we have applied for a kid just like those ones. The collective heart attacks would be too much hassle to bear.