I wasn’t allowed to do beef 4-H because I was a girl and my grandparents were all about “Here learn something useful for a girl like how to embroider things.” I would like to tell you that they were great parents and that they were right but although I have included my ability to embroider everything from sheep blankets to ladies hankies, to tractor tires … it has never secured me a single job.
I did take an active interest in my brother’s 4-H activities though. I lived my life vicariously through his ups and downs. It was a win for the family if he won and I was still believed in fairy tales like Cinderella finding her prince and me being part of the family, and so I did the research for his steer each year and made the suggestions while he did the practical applications.
So much goes into that final judging and sale. And grooming and presentation is part of that.
Which is why, the one year, I thought it important to explore that to the max in hopes of upping our chances of being big winners. Left alone one afternoon with abandoned tools such as hedge clippers, sheep shearers, grandpa’s barber kit AND my brother … I got creative.
I covered my brothers eyes with duct tape and made him promise not to peek while I got to work.
They say originality matters and they like to see unique approaches … but they are lying. There is just no room for a poodle steer with pink bows and his matching owner in the closed hearts of 4-H Canada.
Damn them all.
I thought it made my brother more believable as a human being, sort of lent him a persona of credibility that he had been lacking.
I embroidered swear words all over their flag while they were having their big wrap up barbeque with poodle beef sandwiches.
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