In a media landscape of fake news that can, in this particular moment, feel exhausting, it's reassuring to know that the failing New York Times’s Vows section remains a safe haven of riveting journalism. Usually the column recounts newlywed’s interests, their extravagant ceremonies, the colors of the flowers, the brave decision to not go with flowers at all, and what elite school the partners first met in. Reading that Vows section is like taking a chamomile bath. It is perfectly relaxing and indulgent.
But every once in awhile the column’s profile of a couple will make you not only question why it is people get married but how it is anything on earth every happens at all. If that sounds dramatic, then I’d like to introduce you to this week’s bride: Sara Ward.
Sara is but a humble horse lover who met the (human) love of her life in a small town bar, mere days before mutually burying a possum with him. While she has suffered many concussions and is occasionally covered in “horse slime,” the greatest hurdle she has jumped (pun intended) is grappling with the reality that her father shot and killed her mother. Like the aforementioned possum, this neat little fact is buried deep in the story. Besides, everyone in the family is seemingly and casually taking the dad’s word that he shot their mom by accident as truth. Who am I to judge? I’ve never ridden a horse or piloted a plane and those are the only two things qualifying anyone in this narrative. Also, for what it’s worth, I think the author is implying that Sara’s horses all wanted to bang her. Okay, just had to put that out there.
Pour yourself a glass of red and take in all that this story has to offer. If you have yet to go holiday shopping, here are the best lines from the article that you can print onto coffee mugs, throw pillows, or hey, even horse blankets.
- "As some personal lives are measured in past relationships and former beaus, Ms. Ward’s life could be measured in horses."
- “It was an incredible experience. I’ve never felt so proud of my horse,” she said. “I mean, I don’t really remember it because I was concussed, but I’ve seen video."
- At the end of the day, tired and wearing what she describes as a tattered pair of riding breeches, a dirty outfit covered in “horse slime,” she met her sister, Mallory, at Laseter’s Tavern for a drink and some trivia games.
- That night, after he had shoveled away the opossum remains and hosed off the blood, she talked with him about her parents…"
- “I pulled so far back that the plane went,” she said before making the whizzing sound of a nose dive.
- "Bling Bling, a horse Ms. Ward describes as Onassis’s best friend, stepped in to take his place."
- "It wasn’t, like, gas station wine, but it wasn’t Château Margaux, either,”
- "So dear Sarah, your parents have always respected your decisions, now go forth with your flying groom."
I am happy to announce that I have bought the theatrical rights to this utterly insane story and will be producing a play called But Of Horse: One Concussed Woman's Trot Down The Aisle.