Saturday, January 06, 2018

Girl Gone Wild Goes South

January 6, 2018
   I really liked this headline for the cover but quite a few on the staff did not. Their concern centered on the unfortunate association with all those tawdry videos sold on late night TV, "Girls Gone Wild," and the possible negative association it may have with our history magazine readers.     

Girl Gone Wild cover and inside splash page painting.

   My production manager, Robert Ray, is the one who came up with the headline idea, and I think it's safe to say, he was, in fact, riffing off the sleazy T&A franchise, but that did not deter my enthusiasm for the concept.

   However, when Ken Amorosano, Dan Harshberger, Rebecca Edwards, Stuart Rosebrook and his wife Julie, Paul Andrew Hutton and his daughter Lorena, and finally, Kathy—my lawful-wedded-wife—all concurred that it just might NOT be a good cover blurb, for the reasons stated above, I had to listen. This is my brain trust and, to say the least, that is a formidable group.

Daily Whip Out Sketch: "Modest Olive"

Looks like we may go back to the original concept. Stay tuned.

Daily Whip Out: "Olive In Shadow #6"

   So, was the headline accurate? Did Olive, in fact, "go wild" during her time with the Mojaves? Well, she frolicked topless, her Mojave nickname was "Spansa," which connotes promiscuity and she may have been married to the chief's son and bore his children. I'd say that certainly qualifies as going native, and by extension, wild. There is also evidence she was forced to leave and return to Fort Yuma on threats of annihilation from an emissary determined to get her back at all costs and that she didn't want to go. She had a Mojave family and she loved them. And, as my lawful-wedded-wife puts it:

"Olive lost two mothers."
—Kathy Radina


  1. I think you made the wise decision

  2. Considering all the circumstances, I'd say Olive more went deeply into survival mode than "went wild". Let's not discount what trauma can do to one's psyche. Though I don't discount that she probably came to love her children (if she indeed had any while in captivity) and even members of the tribe that were kind to her, but its still a tragic story. I think she simply became what she had to become and I sympathize with anyone in a situation where their heart is in two different worlds through no choice of their own. Olive "Walked in Two Worlds" This if from a line on the website PARTNERSHIP WITH NATIVE AMERICANS...."There is the physical part, the mental part, the emotional and the spiritual. You are the same. Together, these aspects form the circle of our being, and no one aspect is more important than the other." Perhaps "Olives Two Worlds" would be a good title

  3. well, i realize i'm not too high up in the heirarchy; but i'm loyal, and dedicated to the old west, much less the true west;;so while outside the venerated loop, i must say that i didn't mind the title at all, & i think it would also help sales w/o as much T&A reference as you imagine. that headline would mildly wet my whistle, and so would the beautifully done cover portrait...i'd say, roll with it. it looks to be a really interesting article. always healthy to uncover a bit of the wild side of the true west. (and really this isn't as suggestive as the topless lady duellists from a while back) so, to quote Willie the Shake~ "...Lay on, MacDuff"!

  4. I don't like the Girl Gone Wild headline because it suggests that going wild was her choice. She is just a survivor of a terrible event, and had what we now call Stockholm Syndrome.

  5. i doubt stockholm syndrome. for all we know, she appears to have learned to embrace the habitat (and habit, perhaps)...maybe even fallen in love and enjoyed her life. looks like it
    to me.


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