From Endurance to Dressage
This past February, I wrote about my ancient clippers and how poorly I care for them. Let me rephrase that, your Honor - I don't do any clipper maintenance unless you count blowing the loose hair off of them. Either here or on Facebook, someone chastised me about my lack of a maintenance program. "I hate your face right now" (as one of my colleagues is fond of saying) because you finally guilted me into opening the 20-year old manual for the second time ever.
The first time I opened the manual was a few weeks ago when Maureen politely asked me if I'd make a copy of it and mail it to her. I almost just mailed her the original as I clearly was never going to use it. Joke's on me, I guess. With my OCD tendencies, I couldn't unsee the invisible look of reproof from Oster regarding my own clippers and their obvious need for some TLC.
I apologize to whomever's face I just claimed to hate. It's really the fault of my 5th grade English/Language Arts curriculum. For the last few weeks, I've been teaching the differences between scientific and technical texts. Since the whole clipper thing was fresh in my mind, I stupidly told my kiddos that I had been leafing through my clipper's manual which would be a technical text as it tells the reader how to make or do something. And since I DO NOT TELL LIES, I felt compelled to actually look through it.
Again, I couldn't unsee the fact that my clippers REALLY NEEDED SOME MAINTENANCE. So, I sat down over the weekend and flipped through the booklet, mentally ticking off the things I was willing to do - clean the area beneath the blades, check; remove the cover from the bottom cap, check; remove the cover of the gear mechanisms and lube it all, um ... are you kidding me? Big fat NO. But remember, OCD.
In the end, I started with the easy stuff, see those filter caps above, and figured I'd just clean the parts that seemed easy to reassemble, and go from there.
Funny moment: as I was peering into the cavity of the gear box thing, I realized I couldn't see diddly squat. I suddenly remembered that I keep a headlamp in my barn bag, so I tossed that on for a hands-free light. My husband walked in about that time, and I know he had to try very hard not to laugh at me because this kind of crap is NOT MY JAM. It helped though, and as a bonus, it made me feel all kinds of empowerment. I actually took out all of those innards.
Once I got going, it was - dare I say it? fun. Gross, sticky, and black, but I felt like I was doing the community a service. Go, me. But of course, just about the time that I was feeling quite successful and well, mechanical, a random washer dropped onto the table from the towel that I had been using to clean the parts. Well, hell's bells. Where did that come from? I had clearly said that part out loud as my husband snickered from the living room.
In the end, I sort of just guessed where it went. When I told my husband that I was hoping everything would still work when I plugged it in, he asked how much clippers could cost anyway. When I replied that several hundred bucks would cover it, he urged me to FOLLOW THE DIRECTIONS.
To my relief, they whirred to life just as they always do. They've even already been put back to work, and before I put them away, I blew on the blades to clear out the loose hair.
See? I have a maintenance program. Don't judge.
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
*** SCEC 10/15-16/22
2022 Completed …
(*) Tehachapi 5/22/22
(*) Tehachapi 7/24/22
(***) Tehachapi 8/28/22
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%:
Score 1: 62.115%