Hmmm…there are quite a few small things that get to me. Remember I’m a rule follower to a fault, so basically any time I see someone breaking a rule it drives me a bit crazy.
I’d have to say though that the thing that bothers me the most is when a rider or horse person in general fails to realize that there is always more than one way to do things and that unless it is abusive or harmful in some way please shut the poop up and leave me/others alone.
For instance. There I was minding my own business hanging with Dusty and Wyatt off to the side between my 18″ and 2′ jumper rounds at the show. This teenager was lunging her very lame horse in the dressage arena with the things head tied down. The girl’s mother comes walking over and here I am thinking she is going to tell her daughter to leave that horse alone, but no. She comes up to Gem and informs me that I should clip her because she looks unruly.
Um? Excuse me? Shut up and go teach your daughter how to be a real rider who doesn’t use gadgets on a lame horse to get it to appear round and leave me and my yak alone.
Beyond just being plain old fashioned rude though there are those who think that their opinion is not only correct but needs to be heard as well. I personally don’t like treeless saddles yet I don’t go around telling those who use them they are wrong. Because you know what? I’m 99% sure everyone is just making this crap up as we go along anyway and we are all doing our best to figure out what works at the moment and changing it as needed.
Yes, there are certain things I don’t agree with yet that doesn’t mean that those things don’t work for you and your horse. It just means that it isn’t something I’d like to do for mine. So go ahead and do your thing. Oh I may very well be silently judging you and your choices, but I will also understand that there is more than one way to do this thing and will keep any comments to myself.
A good case in point is my best riding bud S. The two of us couldn’t manage our horses any differently. She rides bitless and in a treeless saddle. She supplements the crap out of her horses and doesn’t feed any grain. She is very holistic in everything with her horses and prefers small amount of land and many horses. Me? I’m a treed saddle, bit in mouth, complete feed grain, no supplements, small number of horses with a crap ton of land type of person. We get along splendidly and each let the other do it their own way with no interference unless the other specifically asks.