EN: Ask the Expert–Your #1 Source for Terrible Eventing Advice

What’s your wildest, most expensive equestrian dream? Monetary abundance is just a click away.

Eventing can be a confusing sport. If I had a penny for every time I’ve been confounded by a question like “Will anyone notice if I sub in a different horse for dressage?” or “Why is the TD screaming at me again?,” I could afford to just buy myself a stupid Rolex and call it a day.

Fortunately, however, I have learned from my many, many mistakes. You might even say I’ve grown wise over the years, especially if you don’t know me that well. A while back, I started distributing that wisdom free of charge via an advice column called “Ask the Expert”–kind of like “Dear Abby” if Abby was an event rider with questionable judgment and way too much time on her hands. And now, back by unpopular demand…


Dear EN,

I need your advice. Eventing has gotten SOOOOO expensive (breaking news, right?). I love the sport but it’s hard to afford when you’re already living on a budget. I’ve always believed in “where there’s a will, there’s a way,” but I feel like I’m at a loss here. Help?


Broke-as-a-joke in Baltimore


Dear Broke-as-a-joke in Baltimore,

“Where there’s a will, there’s a way”–You took the words right out of my mouth! If you really put your mind to it and get resourceful, you too can make even your most outrageously expensive eventing dreams come true. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

1. Sell a kidney. It might seem like a big deal, but you only really need one, anyway. Kidneys go for… wait for it… approximately $262,000 on the black market. Think of the three-star schoolmaster that will buy you! If you’ve got some lesser debt floating around, say, a long overdue vet bill, consider selling your gallbladder–they go for around $1,219 and you won’t even miss it. Probably.

Potential Income: $$$$

2. Have someone’s baby for them. Downside: Nine months out of the saddle, plus the pain of childbirth. Upside: Surrogates can expect to earn $20,000-$30,000 a pop. If this isn’t up your alley, consider egg donation ($3,000-$5,000 per cycle). Sperm donation is less lucrative ($50-$100 per deposit), but weekly trips to the clinic will go a long way toward, say, paying the farrier.

Potential Income: $$

3. Lose the house. Do you really need a house, anyway? You’re at the barn most of the time. Downsize to a cheap, scuzzy apartment or, when expenses start piling up during event season, the backseat of your car. Invest the money you make off your house in a trailer with living quarters–problem solved!

Potential Income: $$$-$$$$

4. Rob a bank. This one can be tricky but it’s a classic for good reason. Tips for a successful bank robbery: (1) Wear a stocking over your head, (2) Threaten to shoot everyone (but don’t really, of course), (3) Enlist an understanding barn buddy to drive the getaway car.

Potential Income: $$-$$$$$

5. Marry into money. There are lots of lonely, single millionaires out there just waiting for a hot girl in tight britches to come galloping into their life. The important thing to remember here is that you can’t be picky: looks, personality, etc. are all irrelevant. All that matters is the bottom line–their bank account. Besides, if on down the road you decide it’s just not going to work, you can always divorce them, take the house, and refer back to Strategy #3.

Potential Income: $$$$$

Hope that helps. Clear eyes, full wallets, can’t lose! Good luck and GO EVENTING.

Have a question for the “expert”? We’ve got a not necessarily legal, credible or factually correct answer! Email it to [email protected].



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