Wednesday, August 20, 2003

August 20, 2003,
Finally got gas this morning. Left my truck at work last night because Cave Creek was completely out and so was I. Got up this morning and Kathy drove me up to the office, got in Ranger, needle on empty, nursed it up the hill to the Iraqi Shell, got in line. Waited for a half hour (afraid to leave it running, coasted several times), both lines were very orderly, read the paper, filled up ($2.39 a gallon, 14.9 gallons, $35.93). Felt exhilarating, like I got a good grade on a high school paper. “I’ve got gas! I’ve got gas! Where can I drive to? I’ve got gas!” Pathetic. By the way, some places are charging $3.99 a gallon.

Lightning struck more than once yesterday. We were having our weekly editorial meeting at 10 yesterday when it started lightning and raining. Power went out twice. Robert R. was uploading our Best of the West cover to the printer in Kansas City and it crashed. Kathy said lightning hit our roof at home. Scrambled the TV dish (she thinks it took a direct hit). Peaches totally freaked and tried to go through the back gate. Kathy put her in the studio and she hid under my computer table. Blew out two phone lines including my computer modem. Obviously fried the TV.

Got a call from Jeff H. at the Westerns Channel. He wants to move immediately on the bumper series (that’s the third lightning strike). I’m sending him sample scripts this week and we’re scheduled to start filming in the next two weeks.

Gus and I went over the CG book moving things around, tweaking and pruning. I made a hitlist of all the art I’d like to add to the book. Here’s my wishlist:

• Blazer’s Mill: Buckshot shooting it out with Regulators (redo)
• Wyatt Earp returning fire at Mescal Springs
• James-Younger Raiders at Northfield with reins in teeth
• Hanska Slough art, do series to replace photos
• Bat & Wyatt standing in Dodge with badges, Cowboys drunk and disorderly
• Finish McSween fight artwork, full page of breakout from air.
• Head shots of Beckwith, Dummy, Joseph Nash, etc. along wall
• McSween dead in yard with chickens pecking at his eyes.
• Leonard, Crane & Head, fight behind store, plus riders coming in at night, surrounding West McFaddin’s Saloon in.
• Need a better Hickok shooting of Tutt
• Hickok at the Rock Creek shootout, get something better

Kathy and I drove down to Tempe to deliver Deena’s dog carrier last night around six. Her dog Buddy howled during the day and her new roommates were not happy about that. We may take Buddy home in the near future to bond with Peaches. Took Deena and her friend Ursula out to dinner at Outback Steakhouse on Southern. Ursula said she recognized our waitress as having been on MTV. I told her to ask her, but Ursula said she was too shy (“She’s probably tired of all the questions.”), so when our waitress came back I said, “Hey, haven’t I seen you on TV? Like maybe MTV’s Road Rules?” She looked at me more than a little shocked. She admitted she had been and wondered how I would know. “Oh, I’m just an old tweaker from way back,” I said as both Ursula and my daughter looked on with dropped jaws and horror in their eyes. And once I was on a roll, I couldn’t help but adding, “Hey, didn’t you sleep with the mayor of Nogales?” Deena couldn’t take it any longer and said, “He’s not my father, really.” It turns out Ann was on several Road Rules (Ann also denied sleeping with the mayor of Nogales, but admitted to “hooking up” with another cast member who is now a doctor in Chicago) and she was paid $5,000 for the first one, makes considerably more for the “all-star” returns. Meal was real good. I had a tenderloin filet and a salad, Kathy had a 22 ounce beer and a chicken deal ($73, includes tip, house account).

”Remember, people will judge you by your actions, not your intentions. You may have a heart of gold—but so does a hard-boiled egg.”
—Old Vaquero Saying

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