December 15, 2007
Got the third bid on the roof repair today. Floyd Rivera, Jr. of R&F Roofing showed up at noon, got out his ladder and tromped around on the roof while I stoked the fire in the studio and fretted over an ambitious scratchboard for Mickey Free that's looking like three shades of regret at the moment.
The first bid we got for the roof repair was $5K, the second $2K. I heard Floyd coming down the ladder so I walked out and said, "Okay, give me the damage."
"Floyd said, "Are you Bob Boze Bell?" When I admitted to as much he said, "I grew up in Wickenburg and have lived here all my life. Hell, I'll fix that leaky scupper for $250 and patch a couple of those bad spots to boot."
"Is that it?" I asked him suspiciously. "Yep," he said with a big smile. "You don't need some big, expensive roof job right now." Then he shrugged and added, "I guess I'm not much of a salesman."
"Yes, you are," I assured him. "I want you to fix the scupper, and when it's time to do the roof again, for the long dollar, I want you to do it."
I got two issues of True West out of my truck while Floyd wrote up the bid. As we traded paper, he told me he was talking about me just the other night: "We were watching the Westerns Channel and my wife said, 'There's Bob Boze Bell,' and my ten-year-old son said, 'Who's that?' and I told him 'He's an oldtimer, you don't hear too much about him anymore.'"
I took one of the magazines back and sent him on his way.
Bitter cold out today. Been hauling wood into the studio all morning and stoking the fire. Buddy Boze Hatkiller is alseep on his ugly orange barka-lounger, with, no doubt, images of pet Shetlands running in his head.
Phone just rang (1:30 PM) and it was Hugh O'Brian ("Personal friend of mine," as Steve Martin would say with that mock Vegas schmoozee-tone of voice). We talked about the SASS show last weekend and then he asked if I sold any Wyatt Earp giclees. I told him we didn't and explained that after my brief book signing, I noticed the art prints sitting on the checkout table behind the counter. I reminded Hugh his wife is a saint, he blessed me and said goodbye. Do you think Hugh was lonesome for his old friend "Booze" or was he fishing for a commission?
I'm going to assume the best and go with the commission. Ha. Still, it's a total hoot to look on the caller ID and see the name "Hugh O'Brian." I keep wanting to call my grandmother, Louise Guess Swafford, who I watched The Life & Times of Wyatt Earp with in 1957, but she has been gone a long time. Still, I have to believe she is somewhere up there smiling and shaking her head at the absurdity of it all.
"That's right grandma, I predict I'm going to meet that guy in fifty years and he's going to gig me for $700 on the sale of a giclee series I'm going to produce of his likeness!"
“The season of failure is the best time for sowing the seeds of success.”
—Old Vaquero Saying
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