The Most Exciting Thing I’ve Ever Seen at a Rodeo
I have been to quite a few rodeos in my day and have definitely seen some nail-biting action; most of which, of course, centers around bulls.
For me, the most exciting thing I ever saw wasn't a seven-second ride, but rather an event that didn't have any cowboys at all. It was a poker challenge, allegedly using people from the crowd.
I'm not sure how they could legally do this, but they got four volunteers from the audience to head down into the dirt and sit at a folding card table. Two of the men in particular did not look physically fit enough to be bull riders or clowns, so I assumed this was all legit. After the four men signed waivers, they sat at the table to play a game of cards. The last person seated would be rewarded with $500 cash.
As the man began to go through the motions of a card game, a bull entered the ring. For some reason, the bull had absolutely no interest in these men. He wandered to the other side and just stood there. After some boos from the crowd, the bull was lead out and replaced by another, much angrier, bull. This one wasted no time in finding his target and headed straight for the table. Two of the four men took off before the bull even got close. I didn't have good enough seats to see the facial expressions of the two remaining men, but something tells me they had their eyes closed; perhaps even saying a prayer.
To my surprise, the bull went for the larger of the two men. I'd guess this guy to be in the 350-pound range. With seemingly little effort, the bull launched this man and his chair into the air. He landed on the folding table which, of course, collapsed beneath him.
This was definitely a thank-God-for-the-clowns moment as they stepped in and distracted the bull while the man was attended. It was kind of sad that there was no second place prize for this guy.
So, I'm not sure if it was a setup or not, but even if it was, the bull wasn't in on it. The bull was just doing what he does. The Poker Challenge is definitely on top of my list of thrilling rodeo moments.