humerus story

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Jan 22, 2008
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elmer, nj
hello all,
my oldest big sister lives out in western wyoming, works part-time for the sublette examiner and part-time on her boyfriend's ranch. this isn't a dude ranch, and the area being a valley between two mountain ranges (valley I think is over 7,000' itself), it can be fairly rugged. my sister's horse didn't co-operate a few weekends ago and pitched her onto a culvert and broke one of the bones in her upper arm. one of her co-workers at the paper had to write her column so decided to use some wordplay to describe the situation... (he also wouldn't let her read it until after it went to press ;) )

Headline: What’s in an ag page?
By Derek Farr
[email protected]
"You’re probably wondering why I am writing a column for the ag pages.
No, I haven’t been promoted. And if you think Joy has finally become a full-time cowgirl, you’re wrong.
Actually, she’s sitting right next to me.
I’m writing this because Joy broke her arm.
You’re probably thinking the same thing I am: “Toughen up Joy! There are people with two broken arms who plunk out a column using a broken nose.”
Not that I know any of these people, but they must be out there.
But it’s true. Ironically, Joy broke her humerus. And let me tell you, she wasn’t laughing about it. In fact, her first reaction was pure, unadulterated anger toward her horse Bucky. Actually, her horse’s name is Dan. Two weekends ago, Dan and Joy had a communication failure that resulted in Joy landing on a rock. Since then, her typing has been much slower, partially from losing two of her four keyboard-trained fingers and partially from the meds she repeatedly refuses to share with her coworkers.
So now I’m left trying to duplicate her rich, laconic descriptions of life as seen from the back of a horse – I’m certain I can’t pull it off.
Joy probably doesn’t know it, but I’m a big fan. I usually carve out a peaceful moment in my week to read about a cowgirl’s adventures in the divine high country of Western Wyoming.
It’s not always an easy life.
Last week, she wrote a melancholy column about hitting a deer with her car and I know she felt awful. It makes me wonder if Dan’s spirits are down. Far be it for me to guess. I’m not much of a horse whisperer. In fact, I’m not very good at whispering.
And that makes it pretty hard to tell my coworkers jokes about Joy’s truck smelling like cow manure. Of course, my family always told me the aroma, “Smells like money.”
Sadly, those smells are less pungent at this time of year as Bondurant’s mud and manure freeze into wintertime sculptures of hoof, tire and the four-chambered stomach. (frozen cow pies)
What’s worse, you faithful readers are stuck this week with my column about life on the range. Perhaps you can forgive me by allowing me a handicapping system like they use in golf. While Joy consistently shoots in the high sixties, I’m making the fairway look like a 1940s bombing range. I wouldn’t even be allowed in the clubhouse.
Perhaps sports analogies are misplaced in an ag column.
Thankfully, this should be my last time pinch writing – oh darn, another sports analogy.
The doctor gave Joy permission to use the two typing fingers in her left hand next week. That means I’ll be back on the bench, watching a master at work.
But for now, I’m doing my best to stay out of her way. She already told the Pinedale Roundup’s advertising director, who’s in his mid-20s, that she could “kick his...well, you know.”
Our money is on Joy, and if we’re smart, we’ll get the battle royale on pay-per-view so the rest of the world can see how a one-armed cowgirl from Bondurant puts the beat down on a boy from Illinois.
It’s probably about time to wrap this up.
Thanks Joy. I am honored to get my two-cents on the ag pages, and I’m looking forward to see your real column next week.
But most importantly, I think I speak for everybody at the Sublette Examiner when I say, “Mend up that wing!!!”
We can’t wait to see you back at full strength."

Joy also used to write for the jackson hole guide, in case any of you used to be in the area and read her articles. also a note that a few years ago my mother was visiting my sister on the way to new mexico, and also got dumped from a horse and though she had a broken neck (no big thing, they said - apparently not the same 'broken neck' that we all know about... maybe just a chipped bone or something) and is fine now, I have the feeling that my family maybe should be looking up at a horse's back, and not sitting on it! I'm sure if you all sort of 'communed' good wishes her way she would be happy about it (note that the email address for derek farr is not my sister's email address)