Hobson's Choice | Lift Heavy Run Long
Episode #18

In the early 1500’s, there was an English horse stable owner named William Hobson. As the story goes, Mr. Hobson had quite a large stable, which housed upwards of forty horses. William rented his horses by the week or month, usually to mail carriers, but the horses could be in whatever capacity they were needed.

Many people relied on Hobson and the availability of his horses for the sake of their own welfare. Upon entering the stable, one would expect to have the freedom to evaluate which horse they needed for the job, and evaluate fair pricing from there. However, this is not how Mr. Hobson chose to do things. Here’s the catch, if you were to choose a mount within the stables of William Hobson’s place of business, you had to choose the horse in the stall closest to the door….essentially giving you no choice at all. This practice was designed to keep people from only renting the best horses, at the risk of having them overworked.

So, because of Hobson’s style of horse lending, the term “Hobson’s choice” was coined. This this translates into, “take it or leave it”.

Those are your only two options, and there ain’t no in-between. You will take the horse closest to the door or you will take nothing at all. There is no room for negotiations, and you do not settle on a different price. All horses are the same fee, regardless of how valuable you believe one to be versus the other. You have the option of taking the horse that is in front of you, and getting the most out of it, or you can grab your hat and walk your happy ass back down the road. That is strictly your decision.

I don’t know about you, but I kind of like Mr. Hobson’s way of doing things. I don’t know that I would agree with it if I didn’t get the horse that I wanted, but I have to respect it. It certainly cuts down on the guesswork. There would be no sense in letting your dealings with Hobson rattle around in your brain all day, with the what-ifs, and shoulda, coulda, woulda’s.

I don’t know anything about your life, and the last thing that I want to do is come across as if I know how you should live it. I will say this about me though, everyday when my eyes open, and my feet hit the floor, I have, to some extent, been given a Hobson’s choice. I can take it or leave it. I can go throughout my day as if I am just trying to survive- avoiding as many people, places, and things as possible, hoping that I will somehow make it to the next day. Or, I can take whatever horse that life has for me to ride, and I can run it wide open. I can run that horse as hard, fast, and strong as it will allow me to go.

The great thing about each day being a Hobson’s choice is….every day it’s a different horse. Take it or leave it. There might be a well kept, pure-blooded stallion waiting on you, as you rub the sleep from your eyes. Or, life might present you with a raggedy cross-breed that looks more like a mix between a donkey and an Alpaca. Ride that thing anyway. Get out of it what you can. Kick it at the end of the day, as you return it to the stable, if you need to. Curse it, swear at when it wheb the day is over…but for God’s sake, ride it, and take from it what you can. Keep your fingers crossed, and be excited that a new horse is coming tomorrow- a different horse, an entirely different animal.

Do what you will. Ride the horse however you choose, or don’t even ride it at all. Walk beside it. Try to train it. Hook it up to the plow and try to work it, but whatever you do……don’t ever, ever, ever choose to leave it. That horse and that day is already paid for.

I hope your day is good and your prospects are many.

Peace, Love, and all things Beef related,

Beefcake

My name is Wilson Horrell, aka “Beefcake”.  I’m a junkie turned sober that found CrossFit, running, and community to be my new addiction. I have no education or experience as a writer, and almost zero knowledge of grammar. I love sitting in front of a computer and spitting it out on paper as it goes through my brain. I hope you enjoy reading, and feel free to reach out or comment at anytime!

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