August 8, 2005
One of those damned newfangled micro-bursts hit a power transformer south of us last night and knocked out the power north of Grapevine wash. Happened around five o’clock. My neighbor Steve said the pole was on fire and everything. Road blocked. People couldn’t get past. No lights until around nine p.m. Then power kept coming back on for a minute, then going off. All the clocks blinking, with multiple tones from the computer to the coffee machine groaning and sputtering and dying each time. "This can’t be good," Kathy said in the darkness.
Tomcat came in at about nine, when power finally came on for good. He had outrageous stories to tell about working at the Alternatives Center in Flag. Kids today. Tom also related the following: "I was sitting in Biffs Bagels this morning and heard a CD of Johnny Cash covering a bunch of songs and it was really good. It got really good reviews as well. His version of ‘One’ by U2 is so good. 10 times better than the original; I think."
Well, I thought Robert Ray killed the book last Friday night, but here we are on Monday with a slew of corrections and additions. And over the weekend I thought of numerous people that need to be credited and thanked. And, I woke up on Sunday and realized the genesis of the title of the book, isn’t in the book! Blaze Away! comes from this exchange: Frank McLaury squares off against Doc Holliday and says, "I’ve got you now." And Holliday replies, "Blaze away! You’re a Daisy if you do." Got that in. Book goes to printer this afternoon.
The stagecoach painting that Thomas posed for came out rather nice (see painting, left.) I added a cave wall to the upper left to add a bit of composition drama to the piece. Highwaymen preferred to stop stagecoaches at choke points on the trail, where the stage either had to slow down, like in deep sand, or the top of a hill, or at a narrow pass, like I have illustrated in this painting.
I’m getting responses about new True West Moments running on the Westerns Channel, so I Emailed Jeff at the Westerns Channel and asked him what’s on the schedule. Here’s his reply:
"The True West Moments started again on August 1 with ‘Prairie Fuel’ and ‘The Term Cowboy’. I just edited the September TWM: Mounts, Fanning and Chaps. Planning these for October: Tombstone Ice Cream, Restaurants and a repeat of Wyatt Earp Lifestyle. (We show Tombstone again in October) November should be Saloon Piano and Fire Danger December has your Stage Coach Robbery piece and the One Liners from Movies.”
—Jeff Hidlebrandt, the Westerns Channel.
By the way, Jeff and the Westerns Channel will receive a Golden Boot this coming weekend in Hollywood for keeping the legends alive. Dave Daiss and I are driving over (actually flying over, if Dave is driving) for the event.
As for my worrying about the book, I got this advice from John:
"I'll paraphrase Bear Bryant, who was fairly successful at his chosen field. On Saturday I think we're never ready. I can only dwell on the many things I didn't have time to teach."
—Maniac #15, not #1, John Hinrichs, Geneseo, Il
“Because of your noting that Tom Mix used a pinch crease, I was able to add to my costume seminar for the SASS Convention the line, 'Not even Tom Mix wore a Tom Mix crease.'"
—Curt Rich True West Maniac #244
"Hyperbole is cowboy oxygen."
—The New York Times, August 7, 2005
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