Everything Else Grumpy Old Bags

Grumpy Old Bag – Thinking for yourself

On the whole I am a pretty cheery person, realistic, occasionally cynical but on the whole I try to remain positive. It has taken me a while for something to really annoy me so much so that I must rant about it publicly but it appears silly season has arrived and has completely removed the ability for people to think for themselves.


Even horses can manage to think for themselves occasionally

So take the other day, I am currently doing entries for an event and I had an email asking me where the entry form should be sent to. Nothing makes me see red more than things like that. Why? Because deliberately I had put my details on the front of the schedule and also on the entry form itself. It actually took that person longer to send the email to me, than it would have taken to look for a further 10 seconds longer and find it. There is always one I guess!

The constant requests for clarification of rules on internet forums makes me want to stab people with a sharp implement. From the top of my voice I want to scream that the rule book is online and will tell you straight whether you can ride in white breeches with a tweed coat instead of asking a bunch of nameless/faceless strangers who might very well tell you the wrong answer. If I see another post asking how to actually enter an event, I might scream. How did we manage to navigate the world before the Internet. In the old days we sent SAEs and had no guarantee our entry had even arrived until it came back with your acceptance letter.

Is it honestly quicker to sit by your computer waiting for a bunch of strangers to respond than looking up the relevant rule in a BE rulebook? Let me add that the BE rulebook is the easiest rulebook to find online of all the disciplines and get to the relevant page. I never go on British Dressage Forums, but I feel sorry for people now with the questions they must get with the complicated qualification rules and eligibility which are probably well defined in the rulebook.

I remember when I first joined BE, I pored over that rulebook to check I knew basically what was going to happen and what I needed to do. I like to turn up prepared and understanding what happens. I had even visited a few events first but hey what is the point of learning what preparation you need to do when someone else can do it for you? I guess the best thing about asking other people rather than looking things up for yourself is that you can then blame them when things don’t go right?

I appreciate there are often genuine questions that are not covered by a rule book, reading a schedule or doing some research online but it would be nice if people made a genuine effort to at least try to find/understand something rather than taking what they perceive as the easy option.

All I can say is well done entries and event secretaries for the amazing work you do, because I clearly do not have the temperament for dealing with it. My response to the person who emailed me about where to send the entry was a fairly unhelpful it’s on the entry form……

About the author


An amateur rider who produces all her own horses. I have competed at novice level and sadly never got further due to bad luck with horses but I am still ambitious to achieve a lot more. I have a riding qualification in UKCC2 and a diploma in NLP. Sports science and particularly the mental game fascinates me. For a day job I work for a large multinational brand.