A MULIE IN WAITING*
*EDITOR’S DISCLAIMER: Donas The Horse wrote the headlines and conducted this interview!
9. Peppermints or Studmuffins?
PEPPERMINTS?!? I crunch them between me teeth, then suck on me minty tongue till I feel a mulie happy-place wrap around me in misty pink fog. Clar’s brain gets fuzzy thinking about all the sparkly minty colors–red, green, blue, yellow. Oh, the most beautiful rainbow in the world. Look …
Ooo the icy blue ones are so mintfully cool. Mountain streams and bluebirds singing in the morning … ahhh.
10. Snap out of it, mule! Are you barefoot or shod?
I’m a mulie. Barefoot for me, Mister DonasMcFancypants. Don’t you worry. I’ve got plenty o’ those tough burro genes from my daddy. Just need a quick trim of my hoof, a nice cleanup of me sole, and bit o’ the rasp. I’m all set. They don’t call me an easy-keeper for nothing!
11. Do you like pesky human children or do you bite them like me.
Gee, I’m guessing you did not forget I’m castrated? Good thing for you and everyone else, too. Look here:
“The most disagreeable and unmanageable, and I was going to say useless, animal in the world, is a stud mule. They are no benefit to anybody, and yet they are more troublesome than any other animal. They rarely ever get fat, and are always fretting; and it is next to impossible to keep them from breaking loose and getting at mares. Besides, they are exceedingly dangerous to have amongst horses. They will frequently fly at the horse, like a tiger, and bite, tear, and kick him to pieces.
From: The Mule by Harvey Riley (1867), courtesy of Lovelongears
Guessing I’d sure bite to save myself…or my people. That’s up to the boss, Diana Gabaldon. (Have you seen the pictures of the mule attacking a mountain lion?) BUT, of course I’d never bite the wee ones. And I have never seen you bite ’em either, ye big talker. Why, I love nothing more than the chickens scratching and pecking the ground under me, a little lassie perched on me back, and the newest kitten riding between my ears. Give ‘em both a nice tour of the penfold, I would. Folks call me “the babysitter” for a reason!
12. Can you pull a carriage? I’d wreck it just for fun.
Pshaw. D’ye really think Aunt Jo would hitch a spotty gray mule to her carriage, Donas? Naw, I am happy to pull small drays loaded with supplies. Unlike you horses, we mulies are stronger through our backs and have a finely honed sense of self-preservation … so I know how things would go if I wrecked one intentionally. Besides, my humans are counting on me!
13. My game is Bite, Kick or Stomp: Mrs. Fitz, Laoghaire, St. Germain
I don’t like this scary game, Cuz. But I’ll try for you: I’d give Mrs. Fitz just a wee love nip so she’d give me that sweet apple she was holding. Laoghaire I’d kick all the way to 2016, and that spooky blue-eyed Comte St Germain, well I’d stomp on his fancy shoe, but then I would run like the wind and hide from him for about 100 years. I’d be watching behind every bush, too, ’cause I hear he holds looong grudges.
13b. BJR, Dougal, Colum
Holy beets and bunnies, Donas, ye give me all the scariest folk! I just can’t. Remember that “self-preservation” thing I talked about? I’m not known for skittish, but I would not get close enough to any of them so’s they’d even notice a mulie. I just am a’feared of these types o’ humans.
14. Are you a good swimmer or are you a roller like me?
Ooh, I love me a good roll in the dirt when I’m all sweated up. Only wish I had a trunk like an elephant so I could distribute the dust better. I’m a real fine swimmer. Mama made sure she took me back and forth o’er the big river till she knew I could. But I really do prefer to ride in a big boat, truth be told.
15. Ever stomped a snake? Squishy fun but don’t get bit.
Hmm. Many of them Mister-No-Shoulders is ok by me. Eats the rats in our grain in the shed and such. But some are just nasty and scare the chickens — even try to eat ’em. (This one here on the left is a Timber Rattlesnake. His pal to the right is a Copperhead. Urk! More on them MUCH later.) Anyhoo, Adso and I scout ‘em out for our braw Rollo. I snort and stomp around out of their range, and then Rollo, he stalks em slow-like, then bam, SNEAK ATTACK! He grabs them behind the head and shakes them to bits…till they be D-E-A-D-dead. Always exciting when Rollo’s about!!!
16. Have you ever jumped a shark?
Okee, see, this is why everyone says mules are smarter than horses. I’m already jumpy enough crossing rivers because o’ the snakes. There be sharks out in the sea shallows (look up just there). What would I be doing out with giant mule-eating fish? You’re just talking nonsense and trying to give me the shiverin’ willies. I have a better idea. What’s say we go out and play horse balls instead?
17. Hehehe …
Donas, can you think of anything but that? I mean THIS kind o’ balls, ye loony stallion!