About a month ago a lady came in looking for advice on her brand new OTTB who was gaping at the bit, didn't turn, and was tossing its head. I offered advice like get the teeth floated, get a professional saddle fitter, and a trainer would really come in handy (she's a novice re-rider.) I sold her a Myler bit and some other miscellaneous tack, and she seemed very pleased with my answers.
She was back a week later. She had gotten a "trainer" - a rusty old cowboy down the road who showed her how to "correct" the horse's problems - with a tight tie-down (or side reins depending on the day) and a double offset twisted wire loose ring snaffle. She was so excited that her horse wasn't gaping and tossing its head anymore. I calmly (though I was nearly bursting at the seams) explained that a bit like that needs to be used in very light hands, if it is to be used at all, as it is a severe bit. I also explained that she likely hadn't fixed the horse's problem, rather had just covered it up. I talked to her for a while longer and once again felt that I had gotten through to her.
Today I wanted to throttle her. She came in to the store first off demanding a discount. Um.. not with that attitude. Then she wanted advice on which bridle she should get (she had picked out a double bridle and a snaffle bridle) so trying to explain the difference between them flew over her head... I finally just pointed out which one I meant. She then asked what the front strap was for. I explained that it was a flash, and before I could get another word out, she excitedly exclaimed, "GREAT! Now I can keep his ****ed mouth shut!!! Oh this is fantastic!!" Not a word of a lie, she was thrilled about it. Oh, and she bought a twisted wire snaffle.
Some people need to be shot.