Creeek! The gate opens and the bull bounds into the air. Clank! Clank! The bells collide into each other while they’re tied to the rope. Rrriiiip. Sharp metal spurs tear at thick hide. Ssssss. Rope starts to slip from a glove. Umph. The sound comes from a struggling bull rider. A buzzer goes off at eight seconds. Thump! A bull rider smashes into the ground with immense force.
I live my life eight seconds at a time. Bull riding is what’s important to me.
The adrenaline rush, the excitement and the joy are just a few reasons why bull riding is so important to me. I love the challenge of man versus beast. I like being in control when I’m behind the chutes astride the bull. Then, when a gate flies open, the bull charges out and the control is switched. The bull will determine where we go, how fast it will spin, and how furiously it will buck to remove me from its back. But that is what I like. I ride because I enjoy testing my luck. Death is possible. Injury is inevitable. However, when I ride the bull for eight seconds, I feel immense satisfaction. Looking fear in the eye is what I live for, and it is why I live my life eight seconds at a time.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.