June 14, 2008
Last Wednesday, when Kathy and I met Deena at The Breakfast Club in Scottsdale, Kathy gave Deena $200 in cash. Deena was embarrassed by it and didn't want to take the money, but her mother insisted saying, "I've given Tommy some extra money lately and it's only fair. Take it. You never know when you might need it." Deena looked at me and I shrugged, (what I should have said was this: "You better take it. Mothers know stuff."
Spent all day yesterday down at the WWA convention in Scottsdale. Bob Brink and I sat in on a publishing forum along with Eric Weider, the owner and publisher of Wild West magazine. I had never met Eric but we hit if off immediately. He is a huge Stones fan and crunches guitar in the Keith Richards method, so we had fun at the luncheon that followed the session, comparing our fave Stones licks (he leans towards Tumbling Dice and I towards Honkytonk Women and Jumpin' Jack Flash).
True West picked up two awards a the luncheon, one for Jana Bommersbach's piece on "The Man Who Saved The West" (her article was on Robert Utley, who was seated at our table) and the other award for Paul Hutton's piece on "Dreamscape Desperado," his opus on Billy the Kid.
Trish Brink, our publisher, was on the marketing panel in the afternoon, and then we all went to Larry Siegel's Barnes & Noble on Shea for a big book signing event at seven. There must have been at least 40 authors there and a ton of books.
I got seated next to Andrew Fenady, who had a stack of his paperback books, including "Big Ike" and "The Trespasser's." We hit it off immediately when he told me he had two stents, but he also offered that he is on his fifth hip and I couldn't top him in that arena. As his fans came up and gushed, it soon came out that in addition to his writing he also wrote and produced the classic John Wayne flick Chisum. Andrew told me a few Duke stories (Fenady loved Duke and said
Wayne called him "McKinnedy"). But the real kicker came when Andrew mentioned writing several TV theme songs. Like what? I asked. The theme to "The Rebel." Johnny Yuma!? Wow! That just floored me. I have always loved that song and used to watch the show just to hear the song. Andrew regaled me with inside snippets on the recording session with Johnny Cash and told wonderful anecdotes about Cash and crew. Andrew also confessed he still makes $30K a year off of royalties on the song.
Got home from the convention at 10 P.M. and found Kathy up waiting for me. Deena was in a car wreck returning from Casa Grande where she and two employees had a financial seminar. A jacked-up truck came swerving into her lane and caused a three car smash up, with Deena's car ending up going backwards at 75 and into the median where she crashed into two trees. Everyone was okay, although the guy in the back of Deena's car suffered a bump from his Blackberry hitting him on the head.
The kid in the jacked-up truck got a ticket and the tow truck driver arrived and said, "It's $55 an hour and it started when I got the call and it's $17 a mile and you have to pay me in cash. No checks."
They towed Deena's car from milepost 185 to Thomas and 68th Street where Deena found an ATM machine. The tow truck driver got out and demanded $275, in cash. However, the ATM machine had a limit and wouldn't give out more than $100. Still in shock from the wreck and its aftermath, Deena wondered what the hell she was going to do. Then she remembered the $200 in cash her mother gave her, which she pulled out of the bottom of her purse and paid the bill in full.
Wow! How do mother's anticipate this stuff?
Speaking of mothers, one of our hens gave birth to a little black chick. So Spike is a daddy and he's crowing and preening like a, well, a proud cock.
"The best thing a father can do for his children is—love their mother."
—Old Kingman saying
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