And the Cow Jumped Over the… Ford

Rethinking a favorite nursery rhyme with cars in mind.

byBen Keeshin|
And the Cow Jumped Over the… Ford

One of the English-speaking world’s most famous nursery rhymes is a terrifying, likely hallucinogen-induced spectacle of flying cattle, anthropomorphic dogs, violin-playing cats and a heated, clandestine romance between two kitchen objects. Written to delight children, it often throws them into a swirling, psychedelic world where boundaries are dissolute and it’s O.K. to say the word “diddle.” It goes like this:

Hey diddle diddle,

The cat and the fiddle,

The cow jumped over the moon.

The little dog laughed,

To see such sport,

And the dish ran away with the spoon.

Such rhyming madness must have driven Monty Reger, of Santa Monica, Calif., to train his Texas Longhorn to hurdle. Here, circa-1935 at the Fourth Annual Santa Monica Rodeo, Monty guides his massive bull over an unsuspecting coupe. (The bull’s form, it must be noted, is impeccable.) Like a oversize collie, the bull sails over the car, its grace and menace in perfect union. We hope such a beast jumped for many years, until at which point its joints failed him, and he was sautéed.