But Mr. Sus got free tickets from a vendor at work, so we figured it was something the munchkin would enjoy and we should probably take her. And you know what? We all enjoyed the hell out of it.
Seriously, I had no idea how much fun watching cowboys wrestle cows and ride broncos could be. It's sort of like the Olympics, only if the luge were alive and trying to toss you into the stands. Way cool. The best part was the calf scramble, though. You haven't lived until you've seen 28 FFA students try to chase down 14 calves in a mud-filled arena. Martina McBride was the headliner that night, but we cut out before the concert and went to check out the livestock show. It's basically just a giant trade show for ranchers, but they had a petting zoo and a pony ride and row upon row of cows, pigs and goats for sale, all packed into the Reliant Center where I volunteered while Oprah and Bill Clinton visited with Katrina evacuees last fall. Weird. And the fashion! Lord. I started counting the number of pairs of above-the-ankle tapered jeans I saw walking around, but I lost count somewhere around 75. It's funny how redneck fashion is consistently 15 years out of date. Used to be only the 'kickers would be caught dead in boot-cut jeans, but now that boot-cut jeans are all in style, the 'kickers are stuffing their boots into the tapered jeans the rest of us tossed out with millennium.
There's also a big carnival set up out in the parking lot. Carnivals are cool, but I'd forgotten how little there actually is to do at a carnival if you're not so much into vomit-inducing rides or sinking all your money into fixed games for crappy prizes. When I was in high school I worked in the carnival games section at Astroworld one summer, so I spent the rest of the night torturing Mr. Sus with carnie adages. Say it with me, people: "Once a carnie, always a carnie." Good times. And we got deep-fried Oreos and deep-fried cookie dough. The Oreos were kinda lame, but the cookie dough? Oh. My. God. Words do not exist to describe the heavenly sensation.
In conclusion: Rodeo = good. Rodeo fashion = bad. And not a single cowboy was anywhere near as good lookin' as either Heath Ledger or Jake Gyllenhaal.