Tuesday, March 21, 2006

March 21, 2006
I just got word that the funeral for Wendell Havatone is this Saturday in Kingman. I called Dan Harshberger and asked if he was going. Dan asked me if I was going to attend the all night wake at the Hualapai Tribal Gym in Peach Springs and I said, “Yes, as long as it’s over by 9 p.m.”

There will also be a viewing at Suttons Funeral Home, Friday, March 24, 2006 from
2 to 4 PM. Services will be Saturday, 10 AM at the Manzanita Baptist Church, after the
service his body will be returned to Suttons for cremation. I'm definitely going. Wendell was an important guy to me.

Speaking of Kingman
“The driver's license that Tony Soprano picks up by mistake belongs to Kevin Finnerty, 29911 N. Stockton Hill, Kingman, AZ 86401. There's a Pizza Hut at 2911 Stockton Hill, maybe Gandolfini has fond memories?”
—Lauren, Maniac #19

Feedback and Sniping
“When I was younger and spending time on my Grandparents ranch we often burned cow chips in our camp fires. Since the methane (that caused the smell) has dried out of the buffalo chips and the cow pies, there is no smell!!! You should have tried it before you announced it to the world that people on the trail didn't bathe. That's also not true. Maybe there wasn't a lot of water for bathing, but that doesn't mean they didn't wash.”
—Unnamed Westerns Channel Viewer

“Mr. Bell, my husband and I are having a disagreement about Marshall Dillon’s horse on the show Gunsmoke. My husband says that he is a plowhorse. Can you help us with this disagreement? Did James Arness name is horse after the Duke? We find your info about the West very interesting and amusing.”
—Another Western Channel Viewer

Dear Bob Bell,
I am a history buff on Old West gunfighters. I want to be a historian someday. I live in Vale, Oregon, and I am junior in high school. I have some questions about gunfighters.
—Garret Way

1. Do you believe Hardin backed Wild Bill down with the road agent spin? No. I think that's Hardin BS-ing long after Wild Bill was in the ground.

2. Why did John Selman want to kill Hardin? I believe Selman felt threatened and wanted to get the drop on a very dangerous man. It was a smart move, probably, although Selman got his in the end.

3. Are you against or for the Billy the Kid DNA investigation? I think it's an honorable quest to determine if the real Billy the Kid is buried at Fort Sumner, or Hico, Texas. And I think it's small minded of Fort Sumner to not allow a dig to determine if the Kid is still there.

4. Who was “Killin” Jim Miller? A very dangerous man, who also got what he deserved.

5. Do you believed that Pat Garrett shotgunned Billy the Kid? I'm not totally positive, but I couldn't say I'd blame him if he did. I do believe Garrett shot him down without any chance. And I think the Kid was unarmed. No knife, no pistol.

6. Do you think that Wyatt Earp was in a shotgun duel with Curly Bill Brocius? I have a hard time believing Earp when he says he could name all nine of the cowboys shooting at him at Iron Springs (also styled as Mescal Springs). And I have a hard time believing Earp when he says he could see Curly's eyes, etc. However, that said, why didn't Brocius show himself? The Epitaph offered a $1,000 reward if he turned up living. And why did Curly's two followers then try to rob the mill office at Charleston to get out of the country? That is compelling evidence to me that Earp killed someone.

7. When was the last gunfight that an old west gunfighter was involved in? The gunfights have never stopped and continue on to this day. The only things that have changed are the weaponry and transportation.

8. Who is your favorite gunfighter? Billy the Kid, by far. So young, so bold, so humorous.

9. Do you believe that Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid escaped backed to the United States after the 1908 gunfight in South America? Nope. Too much evidence that they got nailed down there.

10. What changes in the early 20th century affected the gunfighter’s way of living? Too much big industry, paved roads, telephones and air conditioning. Add to that labor strikes and modern corporations and the brief period from 1865 to 1888 seems like a blip. Or a fluke. Definitely a fluke.

More Black vs. black Feedback
“I agree with Charlie on the black and white, reparations-by-stylebook issue. Jana's little diatribe reminded me of a saying from the wife of the old vaquero: ‘If it's got tires or testicles, it's going to give you trouble.’"
—Tom Carpenter

“I bet Jana Bommersbach hasn't noticed that racists always capitalize racial words because they think race is something real. The Aryan Brotherhood believes in White, and Black Muslims believe in Black. But the modern idea of race is relatively recent, and I see no reason to validate it by capitalizing the names. America and Africa are places, and you capitalize place names. But black and white are just nicknames for people of different shades of brown."
—Will Shetterly

End of sniping. Resume normal reading. I finished the deck artwork of Geronimo half piping it over Organ Pipe last night. I’m driving down into the beast to deliver it this morning. Also picking up artwork for a Fritz Scholder piece we’re doing.

“The secret of concentration is the secret of self-discovery. You reach inside yourself to discover your personal resources, and what it takes to match them to the challenge.”
—Arnold Palmer

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