March 6, 2021
I've interviewed my share of oldtime cowgirls and when it comes to the love of their lives they often say something along the lines of, "I was just a snot-nosed girl and I don't know what he saw in me. . ."
"Daily Whip Out: "Lonely for You II"
Remembering The First Crush
In my experience, nothing is more vivid to an old woman than her first stirrings of puppy love.
In 1991 I took my mother and her sister, Sadie Pearl, to the Orange Cemetery, east of Dell City, Texas, and then on to Weed, New Mexico to see the country where their parents—my grandparents—came from. My grandfather, Robert William Guess, was born in Weed—or near there—in 1888, so that was some important country to see and they had never been there. So, it was thrilling for them and for me to see all the old country and talk to all the oldtimers who could remember our kin.
From there we motored up to La Luz to meet an old woman my aunt Sadie often corresponded with, named Cordelia Lewis, who was then in her nineties. After the usual niceties and geneology musings, Cordelia mentioned being a snot-nosed girl and being head-over-heels-in-love with a handsome, young cowboy named Wayne Brazel. Excuse me? Did you just say Wayne Brazel? The very same guy who allegedly shot Pat Garrett while he was urinating in a wash outside Las Cruces in 1908? Yes, she said waving me off at the unpleasant part of the story. "He was so handsome!" she gushed and then she told how she used to make excuses to go out to the corral where he was working just to try and get his attention.
Well, I'll be a monkey's uncle. That certainly puts a different spin on history, doesn't it? And, so, my advice to you is, somewhere in the back of every old woman's head is a similar story. You've just got to dig it out. Personally, I have found the best tools for this are homemade cookies and vodka. Schnapps works wonders as well. Good luck.
"And they called it 'puppy love.' Oh, I guess they'll never know, how a young heart really feels. . ."
—Paul Anka "Puppy Love" (1959)