My buddy Pat McLaughlin, world famous rock and roller, bought a horse last summer, a pretty little mare named Bridget. Now Pat had never owned a horse before, so he got this cowboy named "J.R." to come over to teach him about it. He and J.R. spent many hours with the horse, cajoling it and trying to reason with it and, finally, riding it. Pat was ecstatic. He'd never had his own horse to ride and now he and Bridget were ready to go. He would come over to our place from time to time and we'd ride for a couple of hours just for kicks. But the last time Pat came over, about a month ago, my Sweet Darlin' looked at Bridget and said, "Pat, I think that horse is pregnant."
Well, Pat couldn't believe that, even though he'd been a little concerned that Bridget had been getting fat. So he had several of his friends come over to inspect Bridget and give an opinion. After about a week of that, the general consensus was that Bridget wasn't in foal, and that Sweet Darlin' had just been wrong. But Sweet Darlin' insisted that Pat have a vet look at Bridget, so Pat called Danny Haber. Haber came over and palpated around and did all those other things veterinarians do and finally came to a conclusion: either Bridget was pregnant or she had swallowed a mobile home.
Pat didn't know whether to be excited or not, though everyone else was. He realized that he was going to have to figure out what to do with a baby horse and, worse, he was going to have to stop riding Bridget for a while.
Well, like I said, everybody else was real excited and we were all determined to be there when the foal was born. Since we didn't know when conception had occurred-- it happened before Pat got the horse-- nobody had a clear idea when the little colt would come. So everybody started coming over to Pat's house every day and wagering on when it was going to happen. We'd hide out on Pat's screened porch and spy on Bridget while she wandered around her lot and we'd do things like examine her udder to see if it had "waxed up," a pretty sure sign. And we all promised each other that we'd sound the alarm if it looked like the foal was about to come.
So finally last Tuesday at about 10:00 p.m. Pat called and said Bridget's water had broken and that we better be on the way. By the time everybody had arrived, there were eight of us with flashlights trying to see what was going on without disturbing Bridget too much. Bridget in the meantime was lying on the ground groaning and thrashing around looking like she was about to die. She was what people call a "maiden mare" and hadn't quite figured out what was going on.
Anyhow, in order to ease things along Greg and I began pulling on the foal's legs to try to ease him out while Sweet Darlin' sat on Bridget's head to keep her from trying to stand up. You've got to remember, now, that there was blood and placenta and mud and darkness all over everywhere, and while all this was going on Pat was standing there with his flashlight looking petrified. Finally, after we'd pulled and pulled, the foal popped out slick as a seal.
It was a beautiful golden palomino stud colt, so we had a good idea what his father must have looked like even though nobody knew who he was. Over the next few days nobody could take his eyes off the colt. He was just beautiful, one of the prettiest foals anyone had ever seen. He would run and jump and dance like a dervish and just altogether do what colts do.
Sally, Pat's lovely wife, decided to call him "Boo," though Pat had in mind "Jethro" and a number of other unlikely names, so now, one week after the little fellow entered the world, he has a string of about six names which Sally can rattle off in precise order any time she wants to speak to him.