Bugsy’s Buzz Cut


Bugsy is no spring chicken. By all estimations, he’s in his high twenties.

Unlike elderly people who lose their hair, old horses retain their hair. They grow thick, wooly coats and don’t always shed out.

Given our recent heatwave, I decided to clip Bugsy’s coat. A shave would spare us hours with a shedding blade, and save him from several sweaty days.


When it comes to body clipping, there are two cardinal rules:

1. Always use sharpened blades. (Dull blades snag the hair without cutting.)

2. And always clip a clean horse. (Grit and grime clog the clippers and dull the blades.)


I broke both rules.

Of course, I bathed the pony. But it was a hasty suds and rinse. I didn’t tackle a winter’s worth of dirt clinging to his skin.

Bugsy (who distrusts anyone taller than 48 inches) did not appreciate the attention.


His expression:  I always knew you were bad news…


I did let him roll afterward.



Two hours later, the clippers clattered to life and I pressed them against his neck. He’s so small, I thought, I’ll be done in an hour, then I’ll clean the stalls, start dinner…

But his small size wasn’t a factor. It was the density of the jungle. And Bugsy was the Amazon.

Clumps of hair piled at our feet as I mowed voluminous swaths. But progress was slow. The clippers couldn’t penetrate dirty, furry sections. As I hunched over to navigate his belly, I imagined the clippers were a ship crossing the ocean. Comeon, I thought, peering beneath him. Where’s the other coast? When will I reach the other side?


Eventually, my clippers quit. I borrowed my neighbor’s clippers. The dinner hour came and went.

Even Martin offered assistance.



Three sets of clippers and three hours later, I declared a cease-fire. Bugsy was done (minus his head and legs).

Amidst the grooming marathon, the kids were unattended. But they occupied themselves.

They dragged a stool across the kitchen, stood on the counter, and raided the Easter baskets on the fridge. They hid the trash and put the stool back. But I spied their dirty footprints on the counter. 

And additional evidence came to light.

Very incriminating evidence.



Bottom line, Bugsy’s hair is gone.

So is our chocolate supply.