Are you ready to rope?
The wings of the portable corral were pulled shut and guarded as the six cowboys decided on their next course of action. There were a few calves to brand and a few to wean but they would need some room in the trap. Three cowboys went into the enclosure to sort while the other three would stand outside, ready to rope anything the first crew might slip.
The first two in the outside group unlatched their ropes and shook out a loop. The third, a green kid on his first round up, hooked his leg around the horn and rolled himself a smoke. This guy talked a big game that week but his actions only shed light on the truth. Regardless, the crew tried to help him as they could, so one of the back-up ropers asked, “Are you ready to rope?”
Reluctantly, he put his foot back in his stirrup and leaned on his saddle horn, watching the other men sort. He continued smoking and was asked again, “Are you ready to rope?”
With a sigh, he unlatched his rope but hadn’t built a loop as he sat, watching the sorting, occasionally releasing smoke from his cigarette. He claimed he wanted opportunities to learn and to prove himself, but he just was not seeing his part in the equation.
One last time, more direct as the first roper was loosing patience, he was asked, “Are you ready to rope?”
About this time the cow boss, the third member of this rope-them-as-the-last-resort crew, explained why he should put out the smoke and build his loop.
How many times in life do we claim we “just need a chance” but are not prepared for opportunities that may arise?