A (WING) MULIE IN WAITING*
*EDITOR’S DISCLAIMER: DONAS THE HORSE wrote the headlines and conducted this interview!
(Clarence says everyone should know this first: A mule is 50% horse + 50% donkey/ass/burro hybrid. His mother was a horse, but his daddy was a donkey/ass/burro.)
Clarence: That’s right. I am not a wee donkey. I’m a big mulie like in these pictures!
1. So Clarence, tell us where you were born, how tall and how old you are?
As with most new foals, I was probably born in springtime. I dunno how tall I am precisely; smaller than a huge stud muffin like you. Someone said I am 15.3 hh (5’3″ at withers) tall. I do know I’m on the larger side of muledom since I can carry Roger Mac. Of course, we mules are superior weight-carriers to horses. Best I can figure, I was born about 1764, if I was already packing folks around a plantation when the Frasers showed themselves.
2. Tell me about your prior owners before the lovely Frasers?
Is “owners” the folks what bring me water and hay, brush me up and clean the barnyard for me? Oo I like having those “owners.” My first humans were some nice folks w dark skin who hummed to me lots. (Except for that one cranky fella, the mean old lip twister.) I do remember the air where I was born being stinky of sap and turpentine cooking, and there were explosions happening at times (see my twitter avi). It’s a fine place to visit, that plantation. But I’m so happy when I get to head into the sweet smelling mountains.
3. What do you think about biting, kicking and throwing pesky humans who want to ride us?
Unless they use whips or spurs, I don’t generally throw them off. O’ course, Mam taught me how and when to bite a muleskinner or mean teamster, but I’m peaceable by nature. Takes a lot to rile ol’ Clar. And I kinda like human folks around, especially if they have treats.
4. Your five favorite treats?
Ooooh, treats!!! You know I do love molasses candy, peppermints and sweet timothy hay, nasturtiums, crape myrtle, and using my talented lips to pluck off fat pink thistle-top flowers! Also, I like Claire. She’s my human treat ’cause she sneaks me that yummy molasses.
5. Have you ever stepped on a squishy human by mistake or on purpose? Did you like it?
Oo there was the time a farrier came to trim me hooves and he hogtied me. ME! Nicest mulie ever! I brayed and complained when he hitched my 3 legs and then knocked me clean over, all the while with a wicked glint in his eye … kinda like yours, Cuz. So, I miiight have kicked him just a bit higher on the thigh than expected with my free foot when he stepped around me? He didn’t squeal. Just fell over so we was face to face there on the dirt. Gave him my best stink eye. His face kinda ripened like a tomato there — a greenish pall turned to bright red. His eyes just watered. A lot. Next time he came, he let me stand.
6. What are three things we need to know before we meet you in upcoming seasons?
Only three? Ermagerd! (1) That I loves my people and most other critters: dogs, cats, chickens, girlfrogs and goats—but ohh, not huge bears. Git and go away, you old ursine! (2) The White Sow is the Ridge detective/gossip ‘cause her big self isn’t penned; she tramps everywhere, talking to everyone from the goats to the wild boar to the Indian ponies. Listens under the house, too, which she thinks is HI-larious. She also eats her … ooo I hates to say it, weans. Who does that?!? (3) Oh, I do so love Rollo. He guards the house with me and if anything stirs, we have contests on who can yell the loudest!
7. You will be favorite mount of Claire’s (get your mind out of the gutter) Do you like women more than men?
I cannot even DO that, Donas! Anyway, women are lighter and generally sweeter in the heart, like Mistress, ye know? But Young Ian–though he’s tough as nails–he listens to us critters and, well, he’s just the nicest human I’ve met.
8. You are really loud (sometimes annoying) with that braying. Where did you learn it and can you teach me?
No. I didn’t learn it, ye Noodlebrain. (And don’t you give me those glinty eyes.) I just wanted me mammy one morning when I was wobbly foal, nothing more than ears over legs, ye know? When I called her it sounded kinda all cool trumpety-snorty. Other mares giggled and trotted away, but mama, she came right to me and nuzzled me up all sweet-like. They say I can be heard more ‘an a mile away, but I know it is even farther. I’m a one-mule welcome crew!
(READ PART II here)