Wednesday, February 6, 2013

When I hear (Clydesdale) hoofbeats, I think Scotland not beer

I think I was one of the 17 people in the United States who didn't watch the Superbowl.  In fact, I had to memorize who was playing (and then, who won) so I wouldn't seem like a complete idiot if I was having a conversation with, oh, I don't know, ANYBODY on the Monday after the game.  I'm not a football fan.  Don't judge me.  Anyway, I kept hearing about the Budweiser ad with the baby Clydesdale, and yes, when I watched it, I totally teared up.  Don't judge me, again.  If you haven't seen it, or if you'd like to see it again, here it is:
Budweiser Superbowl 2013 ad

So you probably realize by now that I view life through Scottish-colored glasses.  The Clydesdales, well before becoming iconic Budweiser mascots (and mascot isn't really the word I'm looking for, but you get the idea), were a prominent part of the Scottish farming scene.  And, of course, there are lots of folk songs about these gorgeous horses.  Many of the songs are sad and poignant, lamenting the end of an era when these "gentle giants" were an integral part of Scottish farming life.  There is an entire CD dedicated to "a celebration of the Clydesdale horse in song."  I haven't listened to it in a while, because so many of the tracks make me cry.  That's not necessarily a bad thing, but it's hard to drive when your vision is blurred from tears, so I consider it more of a safety issue. 

One of my favorite songs about Clydesdales is "The Last Trip Home", by Davy Steele.  The line "but progress runs its driven course, and tractors hae replaced the horse" gets me every time.  (Davy Steele's lyrics often make me cry, as I discussed in the last paragraph of this post.)

However, not all songs about Clydesdales are tear-provoking.  There is at least one funny Clydesdale song--well, if you consider making an ashtray out of the hoof of your dead horse funny.  Judge for yourself:
"David and Goliath", written by Robin Laing, performed by Ed Miller
(The people performing with him are Jil Chambless on back-up vocals and flute, and Scooter Muse on guitar.  They're great in their own right.)

One interesting tidbit about that video, which came as a complete surprise when I googled "David and Goliath Ed Miller YouTube" or something like that and found the clip, is that the girl in the pink shirt in the front  It was shot at the Austin Celtic Festival, and if the date it was posted to YouTube is any indication, it was the 2009 Austin Celtic Festival, which means that on the way home that night, I took, shall we say, the scenic route.  Ah, memories...

You know the expression "when you hear hoofbeats, think horses not zebras"? It's an oft-repeated adage in medicine, although I don't think it's specific to medicine.  Well, from now on, when you hear hoofbeats, think horses, and specifically Clydesdales, and when you think Clydesdales, think of Scottish folk music!

Until next time...