Sarah talks about what it is like being in a tough sport like rodeos with lots of men and how women should be treated.
John: Okay. So Sarah, you said you participated in rodeos before but I thought only men ride horses in rodeos?
Sarah: Yeah. Like 99.9% of the time, the men do all of the rodeo sports. There's like two sports for women and the rest of them are all for men.
Sarah: When I said I wanted to do the traditionally male events, they said, "You can't do that. You're a woman. You have to do these other events that are not dangerous. They're safe."
For example, the men do calf roping. You work with a baby cow, a calf that's about 100 pounds. The women do goat roping.
And they work with a tiny goat that's about the size of a small dog. So I just always thought the difference was stupid. I don't want to do the easy, safe event. I want to do the difficult event and people were really surprised. And first, they said, "You can't." And I said, "I'm going to anyways."
Sarah: And the first time I did the saddle bronc, they said, "Look, look, look. We got you a girl horse because you're a girl."
John: Oh my.
Sarah: And I thought, "Well, you didn't need to draw more attention to it. I just want to compete like everyone else."
Sarah: And my first time, I fell off the horse and I was really injured. And I was laying there and one of my friends came running out. And he said – I thought he was going to help me up and help me leave because I was really hurt. And instead he said, "Hurry up! You got to get off the – you get out of the arena because the next person wants to go."
John: Oh, wow!
Sarah: And I was really happy that he said that actually because he was just treating me the way he treated any other competitor. "Oh, get up. Be tough. You're fine."
Sarah: And I didn't want anyone to help me.
John: So he didn't help you.
Sarah: Right. And I was really glad that he was treating me like everyone else. And when you see a rodeo, you'll see that the women do events where they can dress really nice. They always wear nice clothes, beautiful hat. They even have earrings and things on.
And when the men do events, they're doing events that they really have to use their muscles and get dirty, and I really liked doing those instead. I'm not saying one is better than the other, I'm just saying I like to do the other one and I think that maybe other women like to do the other events, too.
John: So do you think that the situation is improving? Are more girls joining rodeo now?
Sarah: I don't think so. I think the sport of rodeo is becoming less popular. So I think in the future, there won't be more women in rodeo. There will just be fewer people in rodeo.
John: Oh, I see.
Sarah: Because the rodeo events, they're not very kind to the cows or the other animals. And as people get older, maybe they get more softhearted like me, and they don't want to make the animals get tied up or chase the animals. And so I think fewer people are interested in rodeo these days.
I'm going to go anyways.
We use the term 'anyways' to show we will do something even though there is a good reason not to. Notice the following:
- It was raining but I went jogging anyways.
- I was afraid to do it, but I did it anyways.
Well, you didn't need to draw more attention to it.
When you draw attention, you get people to notice you. Notice the following:
- His loud voice draws a lot of attention.
- Her clothes draws a lot of attention.
He was treating me like the others.
Here, 'treat' means how you act towards a person. Notice the following:
- I was treated badly at the store.
- My boss treats me with respect.
A tough person does not cry or complain very much. Notice the following:
- My mother is really tough.
- In the army you learn how to be tough.
They get more softhearted like me.
Here, softhearted means very kind and tender. Notice the following:
- My grandma was very tough, but also softhearted.
- A good teacher should be strict but softhearted at times.
The animals get tied up
You can tie up a person or thing with a rope, so it cannot move or get away. Notice the following:
- The man was tied up to the chair.
- They tied the dog up to the tree.
tough • softhearted • tie up
Going from work to home
Is life easier for women?
Do women in your country get equal pay?
What was your first job?
Working with horses on the trail
Being a woman in the rodeo
About the Teacher / Creator
Hello, and welcome to elllo. My name is Todd Beuckens. I've been an ESL teacher for 25 years. I created elllo to provide teachers and students free audio lessons and learning materials not usually found in commercial textbooks.
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