There was a time not so long ago when you could get drunk and do something spectacularly stupid (and funny) and it would just end up in the police blotter of a local paper or become fodder for the local gossip mill. Said actions might result in a fine or a couple of days of lock up, but it would soon be just another funny drunk story to tell your buddies down at the local watering hole. But with the Internet, those days are way over.
Horsing Around Indeed
Forty-five year-old Christine Saunders of an Alabama town called Fyffe (pronounced like Barney Fife from Mayberry RFD) is probably yearning for those simpler times after being arrested recently for stealing a horse and riding it to the local convenience store to shoplift a meal and some snacks while loaded. According to reports, she left the poor horse untied outside of the store (along with a bag of beer) and went into the general store to get her supplies (just like in the Old West!)
Store owner Frank Gipson told reporters, “I got the phone call at home and the store clerk wanted me to come up here. There was a woman just real bad drunk. She was on a horse.” Saunders, he said, “was stuffing her pants full of canned goods and cookies.” She was arrested and booked for public intoxication and later released from the DeKalb County detention center on a $3,000 bond. The horse was returned to its owner unharmed, and Gibson declined to press charges. So no harm, no foul, right?
Er, not exactly.
Horse Play Gone Viral
Instead of just making news in the hometown paper, the story and her mug shot have since been blasted to multiple news outlets (including Reddit and The New York Daily News) which is pretty big stuff for a small town girl from Fyffe (population 1,018). Which sucks, because much like herpes, the Internet is forever. And it’s probably not the way a 45-year old wanted to earn her 15 minutes of fame and definitely not the way she planned her day when she started chugging beers before getting the munchies.
But Saunders can take solace in knowing that taking unconventional transportation on drunken supply runs is not solely the domain of the small town boozehound. Country music legend George Jones famously drove his John Deere riding mower eight miles to a liquor store after his wife hid his keys to keep him from driving drunk, and a 58-year-old Oregon man, William David Bjorkquist, suffered an even more humiliating fate in 2008, when he picked up a DUI—on a tricycle.
Who Hasn’t Drunkenly Stolen a Large Mammal then Shoplifted?
Saunders should look on the bright side. She stole a horse, which in the Old West would have gotten her hung, and she wasn’t even charged with a crime. Even the owner of the store was sympathetic.
“Well, I’ve been there before,” Gipson told reporters.
That must be some wild little town.