Lost my Marbles

My marbles are definitely lost. There are bats in my belfry. My cheese done slipped off my cracker. There’s a kangaroo loose in my top paddock. My cuckoo clock is stuck at 12. However many other euphemisms you can think of for crazy, they all apply.

I entered a dressage show.

Apparently they don’t offer this at dressage shows?

Like… one that doesn’t have any jumping at all. Not even a combined test. And they do real USDF dressage tests (although thanks y’all for letting me do my lil’ USEA test cuz I don’t have any more room in my brain to learn more). I have never been able to fathom why anyone would want to willingly do a dressage test when you don’t even get to jump afterward as a reward, but I guess I’m about to find out what this business is all about.

How did this happen? I dunno. Moment of weakness? Sometimes I have ideas that seem really good at the time but are actually crap? Or I go along way too easily with things that Trainer suggests… that’s probably it. I’ve noticed I’m very agreeable to anything that is presented to me dressed as a learning/development opportunity. I should remember that in the future (but I won’t) because I think Trainer has figured out how I work. Damn her manipulative ways.

or this either?

But I sent my little entry in for a dressage test at a show next weekend. Luckily it’s just a schooling show, and the whole point of going is so I can practice my Training test B before our event the weekend after. Test B is really stupid, just in case anyone asked my opinion (they didn’t). Who wants to do a figure 8 of 15m circles at X and canter lengthenings on a circle? Literally no one. Definitely not me and Henry. Maybe I should wear green instead of navy so that no one recognizes me? Or I could just wear a shirt with the USEA logo plastered all over it so that everyone knows I’m an eventer and gives me a wide berth?

Dressage judges freak me out. They’re so… judgey and…. dressagey. At least at an event they know in advance that they should probably lower their expectations. At a dressage show I don’t even get a disclaimer. On a scale of 1-10 how big of a faux pas would it be to say “OMG I’M AN EVENTER PLEASE HAVE MERCY” as I trot past C before I start my test? I’m, uh, asking for a friend.

33 thoughts on “Lost my Marbles

  1. Let me just tell you that dressage shows are basically sleep-overs with your best friends compared to hunter/jumper shows. In my experience, everyone is nice, helpful, supportive, and professional. The first one I ever went to, I freaked out at the last minute and was scared I would forget my tests without a reader, which I didn’t have because I was there alone, and I was shocked to discover that I had three strangers all tripping over themselves offering to read for me. I was like WHAT strange, wonderful planet is this where your competitors smile at you, say hello and good job and cute pony, and aren’t screaming at their moms/trainers who are just trying to goddamn help them???? Sorry. Letting out some pent-up-hunterworld anger I guess. 😛 I know I know, eventers are even more cool and laid back, but in my experience most of us out there showing dressage are all equally scared shitless, and so we are very understanding of the private hell everyone is in at shows, and so we support each other through the pain. 😛 Also, those judgey notes on the tests can be VERY helpful…even if they say stuff you already knew, it’s a kick in the pants to finally fix that hole instead of telling yourself it’ll be fine forever. Plus they always throw in some compliments to soften the blow of the critique. But I love that someone who hurls herself at huge, solid jumps at a full gallop is scared of a dressage schooling show. 😉

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  2. Haha! You’ll be fiiiine. I tend to find dressage judges to be much less judgey and with lower expectations than event judges. Then again, I can never figure out what event judges are even judging FOR. Lol.

    Good luck fellow dancing racehorse!


  3. I only go to dressage shows if 1)They take less than 30 minutes to get to, and 2) I can ride a USEA test. Ain’t no one got time to travel far for just dressage or to learn USDF tests.

    And yeah, the


  4. Oooh, I see you’ve taken the first step over to the dark side! Welcome! We have cookies, wine, fancy cheese, corgis, and also did I mention wine?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. hahahah henry is going ot be sooooo annoyed at you

    i disagree with you on the test tho. i had MUCH better scores on the B test than the A test. When you’re on a circle its harder for the judge to see how god damn crooked your horse is in the canter lengthening…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I hate everything about B. I hate not having the rail as a guideline for my circles. I hate changing the bend at X. I hate having the lengthenings on a circle because it’s WAY harder to get Henry to actually lengthen. Plus the walk work is in between the canters, so I can kiss relaxation goodbye there. Tests that put the walk after both canters work better for us because otherwise Henry is just thinking WHEN DO WE CANTER THIS DIRECTION, IS IT NOW? NOW? HOW BOUT NOW? If he’s already cantered both ways (or hasn’t cantered yet) he’s more relaxed. I like having the stretchy trot earlier in the test, too, because it really helps reset his brain. Putting it at the end doesn’t do us much good. It’s a hard test when you’re on a horse that gets more tense as things start coming up quicker and more frequently. But Test A, we LOVE that test. Pretty much anything that’s a snoozefest where it seems like you trot for 5 straight minutes at the beginning is right up our alley.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I think dressage shows can be fun if you go with friends. Then you have a cheering section and people to hang out with and laugh at how boring it can be to watch at times. In the end it is you and your horse in a ring showing off your skills 🙂 (Haven’t shown in years, but used to do some beginner novice eventing and training and first level dressage at shows and going with good horsey friends was definitely the way to go!)

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  7. They ARE so judgey! You’re are all ‘look at me and my horse, we’re trying so hard’ and they are usually all ‘not hard enough bitch’ and then proceed to write down all the reasons why… eh, have fun and when all else fails, put on a for-real resting bitch/working bitch face and you will fit right in 😉


      1. Topsider is in College Station, its the other HDS show next weekend. Its a super friendly place to run through a test and get some feedback.


  8. Ha welcome to Dressage. You will love it and I am sure you will do well. Now i’m down under in Australia but I had a look at your test B and yes, can I say the circles at X are probably one of the hardest moves ever I think to ride perfectly!

    And lengthening canter, I always think i’m hooning and really it just looks the same as my working canter, just in my mind i’m going yaaaaaaaayyyy!

    Good Luck, can’t wait to hear how it goes

    Happy Riding & Keep Smiling
    Mel x

    Liked by 1 person

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