Growing up on a farm means spending a lot of time caring for animals. They like to eat most days and there were a lot of them to tend. As a treat, or in recognition of all our hard work, sometimes our father would give us more animals to care for and tend.
One year my father brought home a buckskin stallion for my brother. He had fine lines and was a wonderful example of the breed. My brother named him "Muggs". He would look into the horse's face and say, "...look at that mug". I think the name may have originated from a character in a Dick Tracy Comic Book.
One weekend the four of them, my father, my brother, Muggs and the bay mare that my father rode went on a trail ride in the Crandall Hills. Muggs was completely unmanageable around the mares and way too much horse for my older brother or any man. I believe Muggs's fate was sealed the moment he tried to mount Bennie Carlson's mare while Bennie was still in the saddle.
The following day my father gelded Muggs. I remember my brother being quite upset about the incident and I guess Muggs was less than pleased. Things change. I think my brother may have lost interest in Muggs that day. I remember riding Muggs more than I can remember my brother riding the buckskin. My brother moved on to girls and muscle cars. Muggs became my horse, I could catch him in the middle of the pasture and take a shoe lace out of my tennis shoe and ride him until it was time to again, feed the animals.
I found this buckskin on a backstreet in Wanchese.
Oil on canvas 12"X16"