Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Prince, Dead and Resurrected

Obviously this isn't Prince

I am going against my better judgment posting this story first, but since you asked for it (Bethany and Julie), here ya go! Teri, we'll get to Jones and the Radial Arm Saw soon.

Let me set the stage and always keep this in the back of your mind while reading this story. OK? OK.

1. This took place when I was a little girl, almost 40 years ago.

2. I grew-up in the country.

3. It was the dead of winter and there was lots of snow on the ground.

I had a horse named Midnight. You might remember me talking about my very first job delivering newspapers so I could buy the food necessary to have a horse of my own.

I don't really remember how this came about (you will hear this often in upcoming childhood animal stories), but someone my father knew had a horse and needed to find it a home. We were told the horse had some allergies, but if we did what was prescribed, all would be well. This was to be my sister's horse. His name was Prince.

Prince was princely. He looked to me like a horse you would see at the circus. You see, he had a very long mane and tail like the pictures above. Not quite that long, but his tail and mane almost touched the ground. To my sister and me, his long hair was an amazing thing. We loved brushing it and braiding it and playing with it, kinda like you would do with a doll.

From time to time Prince would get a little wheezy. We would do what we were suppose to do and he'd seem to be just fine. It was fun having two horses. Midnight and Prince became good buddies. Besides, whenever a friend would come over, we could go on a horse ride together.

One of my jobs each morning before school was to head out to the barn to feed and water the horses. They would hear me coming and whinny.

One bitter cold morning I headed down to the barn to feed and water the horses. I'm sure I heard the whinny. I walked in and there was Midnight waiting at the stall door. As I looked over, however, Prince was sleeping. Or so I thought. He wasn't laying down on his side, he had his legs under himself and his head was upright. I called his name, but he didn't move. As I looked closely I saw a frozen strand of snot. Sorry, but that's what it was. And it was literally frozen from his nose to his leg. Within a second, everything registered in my little girl brain. Prince wasn't asleep. He was dead.

I did what any other girl my age (or older) would do upon encountering this sight. I started screaming hysterically, crying uncontrollably, and running as fast as I could to the house.

I really don't remember what happened next. I suppose all of my siblings and my mother headed out to the barn to see it for themselves. It was confirmed. Prince was dead.

My father had a way of taking care of things. We weren't really told any of the details, we were just told, "Daddy will take care of it."

Well, a few days later, my sister and I walked out the front door, all dressed and ready for school. Books in hand. Ready for a new day. We look out. We look at each other. We look back out. Are we really seeing what we think we're seeing? I'm sure we must have looked at each other and then rubbed our eyes. Then the horror of what we were looking at hit us at exactly the same time. I can remember very vividly standing there, dropping my books, and jumping up and down screaming hysterically...again.

For there in front of us, ten feet off the front porch was our dog. And in his mouth was the hind leg of Prince. Yes, you read that right. Prince's leg was standing there. But he wasn't attached to it. It was just his leg. In the dog's mouth.

Remember when we were told, "Daddy will take care of it"? Well, he did. My father was a meat cutter. He handled dead animal carcasses every day of his life. What do you do with a dead horse in the middle of winter?

Listen, this was almost 40 years ago. Things weren't like how they are today. Back then they didn't have animal carcass removal companies. Even if there were, I'm sure our family could not afford their services.

And so my father did to Prince what he did with a side of beef. And then he disposed of it. Except the dog discovered it. And decided it was too good to pass up. And where's a better place to show-off your great find than right off the front porch? After all, wouldn't you want your family to see your prize? Yep. I'm sure the dog never gave it a thought that he was eating his friend. And in front of us, no less.

I don't really remember how the rest of the story goes. I probably passed out (just kiddin') or blanked it out of my memory. I never saw Prince again. Nor any of his other parts. My father made sure he was taken care of this time. For good.

I know. You thought Prince had thawed out and came back to life, didn't you? Oh, now that would be a story!

Did you gasp? Come on. And it's OK if you laughed. When the kids found out I was telling this story, they burst out laughing. Forty years later, it is funny. It is!


  1. My Michelle - I did gasp, and then I didn't know whether to laugh or cry, so I did both :D I *thought* about reading this to Anna, but decided against it, for now. But be sure someday she will hear the story :D Now to pass it along to my men - but I want to read it to them (it will be more fun that way ;)
    Love you!!! . . . and I'm sorry about your horse.

  2. I have heard this story before, and I'm pretty sure I did gasp the first time I heard it. This time, however, I laughed out loud and then ignored Evan's inquiry as to why I was laughing. =D The story was just as good the second time around!

  3. Ahh, Prince, may he rest in piece (oops, I mean peace!)


  4. Well, hopefully this story only brought tears from laughing so hard. It wasn't funny 40 years ago, but time has a way of changing things sometimes.

    This was the "worst" story. I guess I'm glad it's over with. And yes, I know it was my idea in the first place...

    Let's just move along, shall we?

  5. Anna DID get to hear it last night, gasped along with the guys(with her eyes big as saucers), and did laugh. I guess since it wasn't her horse it was okay. Glad that time has a way of healing.
    So now she wants to know if I have any stories. Uh, no. City kid, no pets.
    Thanks again for sharing, Michelle <3

  6. LAUGHED!? LAUGHED!? AH I did not laugh and I think I am traumatized!!!