. . . I learned from a Las Vegas body builder.
That’s right. Although originally from Texas, Chris Micek was a fitness expert for several years in Vegas before returning home and starting his horse training/rescue business. He met Jenn in Vegas, too. I asked how they met and discovered that being called names can be alluring to some men.
He had been e-shopping for a present for his eight-year-old son’s birthday and was just about cross-eyed when he took a break and entered a chat room. Jenn’s profile appealed to him because she sold some kind of scooter. Great gift for a kid! The two began chatting. Jenn told him how much fun she and her brother had on the scooters, gave him info about them and so on. Chris said he’d love to get one for his son, and she asked how old he was. When he told her, she exploded: “Are you retarded? What kind of idiot would by a high-powered scooter for an eight-year-old?”
Chris told me that after being around airheads all day long who had nothing better to say than “Oo! You’re so strong!” Jenn’s candor was refreshing.
Guess what happens in Vegas doesn’t always stay in Vegas. Neither one of them really liked the place.
When he was young, Chris told some folks that he and his family were rich. His dad set him straight: “I’m rich, boy. You’re dirt poor.” Anyone who’s ever had a strong enough work ethic to earn what he wanted knows that sentiment. As a teenager, Chris bought a neglected horse cheap, rehabilitated and trained it, and eventually rode it while working cattle. One day while he was riding, a man asked him how much he wanted for it.
“He’s not for sale, mister.”
“What if I gave you $3000 for it.”
Considering Chris had bought the animal for less than a hundred, he said: “Sold. You just have to talk to my dad first.”
The man took the business to Mr. Micek, who asked Chris, “You really want to sell your horse?”
“Heck, Dad. For $3000, I’d sell you.”
And that’s how Chris found out there’s money in horses.
He and Jenn told me of their first rescue, which at the time, they hadn’t realized was a rescue. The man on the phone told them the horses were in great shape, and for so much money a piece, the Miceks could have them both. “Just bring a trailer and come get them.”
The man’s wife was a cop in the town they lived in, and the Miceks figured they were in for a pretty fair deal.
Until they saw the horses. Cowboy and Buckaroo were each about five hundred pounds underweight, in desperate need of hoof care, and still being ridden by their owners. Chris took one look at the animals, and after a few choice words for the owner, he and Jenn loaded them up. When the man asked about payment, Chris said, “Tell ya what. I’m gonna take them out of here without a word and let your wife keep her job. Is that payment enough for you?”
He never heard from them again.
Because the owners had continued riding their underweight horses, Buckaroo suffered a stress fracture on his left radial which left him lame. Chris and Jenn brought him back to weight, but knew he’d never be ridden again. You’d think that would make him useless and a drain on the finances, but the Miceks found someone for him. They gave him to a single-horse owner as a companion for her animal. The woman’s daughter called and asked Chris, “I know I can’t ride him, but I can love on him, right?”
Warms your heart, doesn’t it?
The first animal the Miceks wanted me to see was Cowboy. Yep, they
still have him, and while his bulging veins prevent him from having that sleek equine look, he’s strong and well-toned. Jenn says they can’t seem to get him back up to weight but he’s healthy now, and he rules the pasture. When I saw him, he had decided to teach a dominant mare a quick lesson as to who actually was the ranch boss. With his ears back flat, he nipped her and chased her around until she returned panting and complacent . . . at least for the moment.
I’ve already carried this post on longer any I’ve ever written, but I can’t help wanting to share about these people and the work they do.
Next time, I’ll tell you more about Jenn and the horses. Meanwhile, may all your daydreams be of the ride.