Think of majestic horses, perhaps wild, galloping free over verdant hills and valleys, the wind combing through their manes … Yeah, Mike Brown hates ’em.

Mike Brown: I Hate Horses


Hate is a strong word and has permeated our society too much, so I use it sparingly. There are different kinds of hate. There’s the typical sports hate; e.g., I hate the Lakers. But in reality, if LeBron wanted to grab a beer with me after a Jazz game—I’d be giddy to oblige. There’s food hate—like, I hate pickles. I don’t know why I hate pickles. A pickle has never done anything to negatively affect my emotional or physical well-being, but goddamnit, I hate pickles. Then there’s actual hate. I hate cancer. I hate global warming. And yes, I hate horses.

Now, if you don’t hate horses, I don’t hate you. We are free to love and hate what we want. And I wouldn’t look down upon you for saddling up or stroking a long, luxurious mane of a majestic and pristine black stallion. To each their own, I say.

But yeah, my disdain for these beasts runs deep. There is an acute terror that penetrates my cold heart whenever I hear hell-hoofs clopping out an off-pattern rhythm amid a terrible trot.

See, when I was a kid, 9 years old—well, I turned 10 in the hospital—I was in a pretty gnarly accident involving said creature. (Side note: For kids reading this, if you want to have an awesome birthday haul, have it in the hospital, ideally in the ICU—extra presents for sure.) A horse ran me over and galloped right on top of me with no regard for my well-being, thus squashing my tummy and putting me in the hospital for about a month.

“There is an acute terror that penetrates my cold heart whenever I hear hell-hooves clopping.”

It was, by far, the most physical pain I’ve ever suffered in my life, and I’ve binge watched New Girl on Netflix. I didn’t break any bones, but I did break my pancreas. I didn’t know I had a pancreas until that fateful day, nor what it did or why it was inside me. All I knew is that I had to stay in the hospital for a while until my pancreas got better while being fed vitamins through a massive IV attached to the main artery in my neck. Your pancreas helps with digestion, so I couldn’t eat foods.

Since I couldn’t eat foods while I was in the hospital but was still in a tremendous amount of constant pain, whenever I required pain medication, it was inserted rectally in the form of a massive suppository. While this form of ingestion can be lots of fun, I was always instructed not to turn around and look at what the nurse was doing when it was suppository time. But one time, akin to Lot’s wife turning into a pillar of salt for turning around to look back at Sodom, I turned around and got a good glimpse at the incoming pill. It was roughly the size of a man’s thumb, and I remember it felt like doing a certain bodily function backward. But it did help the pain, so no hard feelings toward the brave nurses who had to do that to a 10 year old.

I lost a little weight and had to go on a low-fat diet the summer I got out of the hospital, which is a tall order for a 10 year old, replacing Oreos and Doritos with vegetables and learning to like skim milk for half a year. Though not so physically painful, I can blame this period of my youth on my shitty diet today. In some ways, my bad eating habits today are just equaling out the healthiness of yesteryear.

“I’m still cool with zebras, and I’m down with mules and jackasses because I think those names are funny.”

The experience in the hospital wasn’t all bad, though, so I guess I can’t be 100% mad at horses. When you share a hospital floor with kids who have brain cancer, it can put life into perspective pretty quickly, even for a 10 year old. I also got to meet Karl Malone and my favorite Jazz player at the time, Mike Brown (my favorite player for obvious reasons). This solidified my ever-loving love of basketball and most things Jazz.

So yeah, that’s basically why I hate horses and am still afraid of them. I’m still cool with zebras, and I’m down with mules and jackasses because I think those names are funny, and I still harbor the sense of humor of a 10 year old. I’m on the fence with ponies. My Little Pony’s are cute and cool, but isn’t a real pony just a horse with a growth deficiency?

I will say this though, horses have been proven to be useful for at least three things: dog food, glue and gambling (e.g., neglecting your family duties because you got a hot tip at the track!). And I love dogs, so I love the idea of dogs eating horses. And I love glue. And shit, who doesn’t like the best thing about horse racing, gambling?

I am, however, willing to change my mind as soon as I get an apology from Java Gold, the horse who trampled me. And who is also dead now.