I got a chance to go hang out with my buddy Seth on the Bar-B ranch the other day and help him feed. He is a good friend and old rodeo traveling partner. Seth grew up on the ranch and his Grandpa has managed it since the 1970’s. I really enjoy the ranch, nothing better than the smell of hay, cows, horses and tractors. So when he invited me up, I was not going to turn it down.
I met Seth for the first time about eighteen or nineteen years ago when he had just graduated high school. I am seven years older than he is so that would have made me twenty five. I know it’s a cliche, but I am going to say it anyway, I cant believe how time fly’s. Being twenty five sure feels like it was just yesterday…But wait, I regress, this story is not about how old I am and how young I feel, it’s about Seth. I am sure I will write about my middle age years later.
We were at a steer wrestling jackpot at the Weber county fairgrounds in Ogden, Utah. My first impression of him was that he was a quiet kid and kept to himself. He would answer any question, but with short and to the point responses, yes, no, ok, ect. Looking back, the reason he would answer that way was probably because he just didn’t like me that much. I’m sure if you were to ask him today, he would agree. But somehow we ended up in the same truck as traveling partners and became friends. Now instead of answering me with short responses, they begin with F#$k you Hover! And that, is how I know he cares.
The one thing I will never forget about him that day that stuck in my mind was how tough and determined he was-and still is. On one of the steers that he ran he was late getting out of the box, and ran the steer clear to the end of the arena. Most guys would have given up on the run and not got off their horse. Not Seth, there was no way he was not going to get off his horse and get the steer thrown to the ground. As the back of the arena got closer, the steer was veering to the right, his horse was heading to the left, anticipating what direction he was going to go before he got to the back wall. With great courage(and a lot of youth) he jumped off his horse, scratched and clawed up the steers back, got ahold of his horns and it was over. The steer was laying on his back before he even knew what hit him.
It’s been a lot of years since that day. But my impression of him is still the same. He is as tough as anyone I have ever met. But I have noticed lately that he is finally letting his smarts outweigh his grit. Getting older has a way of doing that to a person…. Even Seth.