Yesterday, a new dressage rider brought her horse to the barn. I'm not very good with general chit chat, so at an awkward pause I filled it with a "So, who do you train with?". We'd been getting along fine up 'til this point, with me making the obligatory 'oooohhh's' and 'aaaaahhh's' over her horse (he was very cute).
Her response... "I ride with Blah Blah in Omgville." She stared at me for what seemed like an awful long time while I did the "I'm thinking" look (when in actuality I had no clue who she was talking about). I finally shrug and admit I know nothing about the trainer. I can tell she's offended by this. As though the mention of the name should've caused me to wet myself with envy and fear. I insisted it was my fault, since I really haven't been out in the dressage circle very much the past 20 years. Well, I guess that was enough incentive for her to offer up her strong opinions on the matter at hand. Not only was she adamant that her trainer was the most superior trainer, but that no other trainer in the entire state is worth a crap. She mentioned that twice... no other trainer in the entire state was any good (except her's).
She was even so generous as to offer to have her trainer come give me lessons (isn't that sweet
I stared at her, blank faced for a while, mulling over the consequences of punching her in the nose. She yammered on for a while, but I missed most of what she said since I'd tuned her out and was giving her the "you're out of your mind" look. (side note: guess that look needs work, 'cause she never picked up on it.) Finally I decided too many people were watching to get away with punching her lights out, I gave Ava one last pat, and left.
Now, I know we all think our trainer is the absolute best (if you don't then you may need a different trainer). I utterly adore my trainer. She's talented, extremely knowledgeable, smart, funny, explains things in a way that is understandable, and knows when to encourage or when to slap you upside the head. She's fantastic. But I firmly believe that we can learn something from everyone, and that just because one trainer works for you, he/she may not work for someone else. Plus, I can name two other trainers/clinicians that I have ridden with who are definitely worth their weight in gold.
Moral of story: don't insult someone's trainer or you could end up with a split lip (you were so close lady!).