I’m not talking about a chocolate confection.
I’m not talking about a “G” rated swear word.
I’m talking about a goat.
Fifty pounds of headbanging fury.
We decided on a short trip to an AirB&B nestled on a lovely hobby farm—a nice respite from our home in the concrete jungle.
“Sure,” they said, “Have fun with the animals but be careful of the boy goat. He’s a little jumpy.”
A little jumpy?
Fudges singular purpose in life is to ram his head and his horns through any and all comers that would dare enter his pen. To slip in through the gate is an open declaration of war to this hard-headed quadruped. Even peace offerings of green grass cannot assuage his violent savagery. The moment you cross over the threshold, Fudges villainous rectangular eyes narrow, his little stub tail begins to flick, and the battle for hierarchal dominance begins.
The goat quickly dispatches two of my daughters. They flee the contest, bruised and unnerved. Fudge smashes his head into the fence for a full two minutes after they leave. Let there be no doubt as to the victor.
Next up is my son; he is shaken early. The goat rears up on its hind two legs, a strategy that gathers him extra acceleration. The beast hopes to strike a blow that will shatter the shins of my only son. My twelve-year-old grabs the horns just in time, a tussle ensues, the goat drives my son backward, but he is not so easily driven off. He regathers his footing and pushes back hard. They are locked in mortal combat; who will win? This struggle continues for three days with no clear winner, though my son has battle scars to show for his epic man verse beast struggle.
I wonder to myself, what will this violent creature make of me? On day one, I enter the fray; clearly, size doesn’t seem to matter. He charges me the moment I enter the gate. If I take my eyes off of him even for the slightest moment, to pet the other goat or observe the chickens and ducks, my knee caps will pay a high price for my lack of vigilance. The goat now employs a more deviant strategy. After attempting to punch a hole through my lower extremities, Fudge arcs his horns up sharply, coming dangerously close to my tender regions.
I’m out of there!
As our weekend at the farm progresses, I get to thinking. If this is a battle for hierarchal dominance, then I should win. I am a full 150 pounds heavier! Sure, I don’t have horns and a bulletproof head, but still, if this is an alpha male struggle. I gotta win! The more I think about it, the more my animal instinct begins to rise. In a moment of indignance, I say to my self “No, I will not be pushed around by a rogue goat with a bad attitude. I’m the boss of him; he is not the boss of me!”
With renewed purpose, I enter the ring once again. Our eyes lock, I begin to growl, he charges, I meet the charge with a Stockton slap, and then another. The goat is put off; he wasn’t expecting that; before Fudge has time to process what just happened, I go total William Wallace on him. “Freedom,” I cry as I charge straight ahead. Two hundred pounds of white hairy flesh thunder down upon the poor animal. It’s not pretty. The goat has no choice but to go in full reverse; I give him no quarter. I’m pushing the animal backward now; he has completely lost his footing. “Whose, the dominant one now, goat?” I mutter under my breath as I press my advantage and slam him into the fence. The goat bleats and drops fistfuls of raisins out of its back end. That’s a good sign for me. With one final terrific push, I let fly with a guttural roar.
Fudge is vanquished. He bleats a couple more times and leaves a trail of raisins as he flees to the far side of his pen in terror. I will have no more trouble with Fudge on this trip. Que the music —It’s the eye of the tiger, it’s the thrill of the fight Risin’ up to the challenge of our rival. Hand’s raised in victory, I exit the pen with visions of Rocky Balboa in my head.