I pretty much thought I'd live my whole life never having gone to a rodeo and I wasn't one bit saddened by the thought. I hate seeing animals distressed, so I never thought of the rodeo as my scene. It's still not my scene, but we did spend the holiday at a rodeo, although it was a junior rodeo, which meant that while there were questions such as "who gets their 12 year old son into bull riding?" the issues of animal cruelty were mostly diminished.
When the calf was roped, the rider released her end of the rope, avoiding a painful take down of the animal. This made squeamish me happy. The girls riding were quite good and we clapped for them all even before the announcer bluntly pointed out that if they don't rope the cattle, the applause was "pretty much all they're going home with." I'm sure the girl galloping on her horse out of the ring after an unsuccessful run was thrilled by the announcer's timing.
Clover told me later that she'd always wanted to go to a rodeo, then she repeated the word rodeo as many different ways possible (row de oh, rode e o, rodeo...) after she announced it's one of the more interesting words in the English language. Also one of the most annoying words when heard over and over again. The day was dampened a little for Clover when I refused to buy her a $40 cowboy hat. The hat seemed like the gateway to bull riding, and I was stopping this rodeo thing here.