We Are All These Hobby-Horse Girls

I have a video that I’d like you to watch. It’s a minute and 54 seconds, which I think is reasonable. I’m not asking you to watch a five minute video – I wouldn’t do that to you. I’m pointing this out because like the President of United States, I, too, love the art of the deal, and this is my attempt at the door-in-the-face compliance technique. Now that I have your attention, even if you’ve already seen it, I’d like you to press play on this video and for two short minutes consider very seriously throughout every frame that you are the girls in this video:

Welcome back. Did you see yourself? I saw you. I saw all of us. I don’t mean to say we are all a room full of white girls on sticks that have been fashioned with horse heads and are not so much as riding these sticks, as we are full on sprinting with them between our legs without any real commitment to form. I mean to say that we are all doing our best to unburden ourselves from a weighted existence one distraction at a time, running and jumping through life on a stick and a prayer so that someday we will know true peace at the finish line with friends.

Do our choices always make sense? No, they don’t. We might find ourselves mid-jump over a barrier marked “JUMP” with no less than six arrows instructing us where to do so, when really what else might we do in that scenario other than crash right through it and then down we go onto a pile of plastic, and it is here things might feel like they’ve gone off the rails, but still we ride. Or we might decide what is right and true despite it all is dressaging our way down a line less traveled, not outside but inside, stale air on our face. We are truly wild and free. I love that about us.

And in these things that we’ve committed ourselves to, based on someone else’s limited understanding of what we’re even supposed to be doing, we may not seem like the best at it or even very good, but we are at least the fastest, and isn’t that something? Saddle up, friends – there are obstacles at every turn.

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Los Angeles based writer. Let's keep it clean out there!

Erin has written 208 articles for us.


  1. i proposed and, i believe, saw to fruition, what appears to be this exact activity at a-camp spring 2015

    we were these girls.

    and we are — oh, we are.

  2. Why weren’t there any unicorns? If you can choose anything for your hobby horse I think a unicorn would be an obvious choice.
    Also, I was at the hobbyhorse making craft panel at a camp maybe three years ago it was a lot of fun. I still have my horse that Riese named Tinker Bell

  3. I have a unicorn hobby horse gifted to me by my neighbour as a leaving present.

    I am ready for this. A Camp 2018 please

  4. Those girls need to be careful that while they’re horsing around they don’t get charley-horses. The mane thing is though, all things being Equus, I feel that all they need to do to compete is just hoof it. As for the winner, long may she reins.

  5. Ok so I found this oddly adorably charming. And I made the mistake of reading the comments for this video on youtube, so I just want to thank Autostraddle for the supportive commentary on the phenomenon (which, once again, reminds me that this is one of the very few places on the internet I should be allowed to read the comment section).

  6. Chattanooga Charlie, what a cool name. You know, I would watch a movie about the cut throat hobby horse competitions cause while its all fun and games, there’s always that one chick who’s super intensely into it. I was that one chick. Too intense for “girl sports” I would always end up playing with the boys

  7. I want someone to show up to run the hurdles (is that a phrase) at an otherwise normal track event with a stick pony

  8. I want this to be my six year-old daughter’s lifelong sport. Thanks for posting something I was so excited to show her.

  9. As a person who used to run around building jump courses and dressage patterns for my stick horse, and who now does all that stuff on a REAL horse (all right he’s a pony, but don’t tell him that), I desperately want to be a judge for this thing. Because I have thoughts. I mean that one girl had the most beautiful passage work, and the other one really needed to work on her flying lead changes, and why would you use a figure eight noseband on such a well behaved mount? See? Thoughts. Very important thoughts.

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