The Civilized Minute

a minute of manners and musings

a lesson from a Lipizzaner

[Reader Alert: the terrible quality of the following pictures is going to frustrate you.]

Just so you know where I’m coming from with this post….I’m a horse lover. LOVER. Then, there’s my children.

It is purely magical to see a horse and rider carrying the American flag while the sound of our nation’s anthem rings through your head. I look around to see people with their hands over their hearts and it makes my heart swell for the pride I know most people hold for our country. Except for the bo-hunks that leave their hats on and don’t put their hands on their hearts…I don’t care for that a bit. Traitors. Spoils the moment. It also spoils the moment when my son starts with the incessant tapping on my arm to show me something. I told you a little about this after we went to the Tennessee Aquarium.  By the time we got to ‘Whose broad stripes…’, I looked right at his little face and said, “You have got to stop touching me.” Just call me Mother of the Year.

So, these are the Lipizzaner Stallions. Magnificent. They are so well-trained and prepared for shows like this…makes you wonder what happened to their natural instincts as an animal. It made me think about how we, as people, go about preparing ourselves for what lies ahead. Some people come into the world calm, cool, collected and with an innate radar that guides them gracefully from here to there.

They are collected. Everything they do appears natural.

They know where they fit in with a group. They are aware of their impact on the whole.

And they aren’t afraid to do something unusual. Daring. Something that at first, may make them appear like they have gone off the deep end, but actually reveal their strength and endurance.

But these people are very rare. Most people – like me! – have to work at being all these things. Our first reactions to situations may be to get spooked. To shy away. To withdraw.

Getting spooked happens and it’s completely natural!! It even happens to a World Famous Lippizaner Stallion. Did you know it takes a Lipizzaner 7 to 9 years of training to be ready to show? Did you know a Lipizzaner is born black or dark brown? So you see, over time and with effort, this beautiful, white, collected show horse takes shape.

So, take it from a Lipizzaner. It takes elbow grease and concentration to stand out from the crowd. And, if a horse that is born black and completely unknowing can turn into a dancing, white, intelligent creature, you can be the person in your dreams.


11 responses to “a lesson from a Lipizzaner

  1. Jay Remer January 27, 2011 at 7:51 am

    This is so cool Kate. I am thrilled to know you ‘like’ horses. I will never forget the first time I saw these magnificent stallions. I was a child (yes, at one point in time, long ago, I was) and my parents too me and my sister to The Spectrum in Philadelphia. What I remember most was having my breathe taken away. This happens in life, when we least expect it. Two thumbs up on your National Anthem views. I am tempted to remove hats myself, but I fear touching them! Have a great day. EG

    • Kate January 27, 2011 at 5:09 pm

      The first time I saw them was memorable for me too. My Dad and I drove a few hours to see a show while I was home on a college break. Just the 2 of us. I couldn’t wait to take The Hubs and children the other night. I could go again right now!

  2. Semi-Slacker Mom January 27, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    Wonder if those trainers could do anything with my children.

  3. Loucy January 27, 2011 at 4:50 pm

    Yeah!! Best one yet! You are doing a great job with your blog posts. I LOVE getting them every day!

    • Kate January 27, 2011 at 5:12 pm

      I wish this had been on a weekend night so ya’ll could have come with us. The kids would have loved it! Well, Ben got a little bored…
      Glad you like this one.. 🙂

  4. deana January 27, 2011 at 9:38 pm

    I’m loving your blog, Kate. I’m a friend of Loucy’s, and I am so happy she shared it with me! Thanks for your insights. Deana

    • Kate January 28, 2011 at 8:52 am

      I know who you are! I remember meeting you on the beach years ago. Do you remember that?
      Thanks for reading!!

      • deana January 28, 2011 at 10:32 am

        I remember! Loucy and I laughed about how crazy it was for me to just KNOW that you were Loucy’s sister, walking on the beach! Too funny!

        And a word about Emma – I’ve been a fan of hers for some time! I’m the one who wanted to buy a painting of hers a couple of years ago – it was simple and happy – I loved it! Saw her painting on your blog today. Love the blog and love Emma’s style. I hope she keeps it up. Please let her know that I would prefer to buy something soon, as I’m afraid I won’t be able to afford her later!

  5. Marion January 28, 2011 at 12:10 am

    Remembering how awesome these creatures are and how much I loved them as a child truly lifted me up after a tough day. I must make time for Lippizaner moments!

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