Thursday, March 31, 2022

Lighten Up America! Your Grumpyness Is Getting On My Nerves

 March 31, 2022

   Heading up the hill this afternoon for a fun evening in Flagstaff. Details tomorrow.

  One of my earliest memories is standing in the showroom of Gabby Ford in Swea City, Iowa and telling my grandfather I didn't think cars could get any more modern than the 1954 Ford. He agreed.

1953 Ford Crestline Victoria

   Got a couple new Bozecards on the boards. If you're lucky, you'll get one. Actually, if you ask for one, there is a very good possibility you'll receive one in the mail. They're very expensive to do, but that's the kind of guy I am.

   Speaking of money being no object, I am so tired of the humorlessness of the current moment, I am going to print this proposed cover as a new Bozecard.

Daily Bozecard Whip Out:

"Lighten Up, America!"

(Your grumpiness is getting on my nerves.)

   And speaking of people who can't take a joke.

"Will Smith can't take a joke. Chris Rock can take a punch."

—James Corden

Wednesday, March 30, 2022

An Inside Job

 March 30, 2022

At True West magazine we always appreciate good rack position. Here's an example from an anonymous employee at Walmart, who gave us face out placement in Branson, Missouri.

True West, front and center

Thank you James Brake, I mean anonymous person!

I'm still kicking myself for not running this cover.

   Dan The Man's brilliant Lotta Crabtree design. We ended up using an actual Soiled Dove that was decent but not the killer cover this would have been. I should have stayed the course, dammit.

I actually own this photo of Lotta. Paid $200 for it at the Argonaut Book Shop in San Francisco many moons ago. That doesn't mean I don't lust after photographs, like this beauty of the Tonapah, Train Station in 1900.


"The answer may not be at the beach but we should at least check."

—Grandpa Ha ha

Tuesday, March 29, 2022

A Cave Creek Storm Rolls In, Will Smith Storms The Stage

 Marsh 29, 2022

   Storm moved in last night. Rained off an on all night. At sunset, I sat outside and watched the clouds roll in with this guy.

The Lounger

   We both love this weather. Here is the same scene we were gazing at this morning with the clouds still rolling in.

Storm clouds over Ratcliff Ridge

   All that beautiful yellow is the dreaded Globe Chamomile that is such a fire hazard. We just paid to have a fire break weed whacked around our house.

Fingers of Doom Storm

Over The Seven Sisters

  Took this photo on my morning walk up Old Stage Road. Looked pretty ominous, so Uno and I cut the walk short and came home. So far, we haven't get much rain out of it. A few sprinkles. Okay, now we got a low, rumbling thunder. We shall see.

My Take On The Chris Rock Slap

   Welcome to Social Media. Someone who does not understand humor will contact you shortly.

"That violent outburst was the worst thing Will Smith has ever done. Wait, I forgot about 'Wild, Wild West.'"

—Stephen Colbert

A Bonus Colbert Take

"It's never okay to punch a comedian. Will Smith was offended by the joke and wanted to stand up for his wife—fine. Challenge Chris to a duel or—if you really want to hurt a comedian—don't laugh. That hurts way more than a punch."

Monday, March 28, 2022

Home Movies

 March 28, 2022

   Thanks to a broke tourist who wanted to make it to the Promised Land (California), my Dad traded a tank of gas for the broke guy's 8mm camera and projector. I took tons and tons of film with that camera and we often watched them in our house on Ricca Drive but it somehow didn't quite look like this.

An Idealized Take On Home Movies

(thanks to Gary Zaboly for sharing)

   Yes, I am always looking for big hats and here is one from a documentary on the Mexican Revolution that James B. Mills sent me. Check out that woman in the giant sombrero in the foreground. So cool.

Big-hatted Mamacita

And, these river crossers aren't too shaby either.

Big hats crossing the river

"Sometimes you must tell a lie to arrive at the truth."

—Old Vaquero saying

Sunday, March 27, 2022

Slot Canyon Auditions & The Genius of Richard Brautigan

 March 27, 2022

   In our Mickey Free story, he leaves Tom Horn and Jim Young high in the Sierra Madres and rides on alone, entering an ominous looking slot canyon. And that's where the story hits the fan. In fact, it's the opening sequence of the movie on paper. Here I am auditioning slot canyons.

Daily Study Whip Outs:

"Slot Canyon Auditions"

   The goal is to make it as foreboding as all get out, and, in fact, three assailants are hidden in the rocks planning their ambush.

Daily Whip Out: "Slot Canyon Ambush"

   And, here's a big, fat scratchboard version.

Daily Scratchboard Whip Out:

"Slot Canyon Ambush"

   One of these days it will all fall together. And what do those ambushers look like? Typical Apache Pass Cowboys with a mixed blood Mestizo, or two, thrown in for good measure.

Apache Pass Cowboys

Mestizos Galore

   Thanks to my son, Thomas Charles, I am reading this guy.

Richard Brautigan

   Tomas sent me "The Hawkline Monster: A Gothic Western." The genius of Brautigan, to me, is he does these really sparse, short chapters. Before I knew this, I put off trying to read it and finally, last night, I said, "Dammit, you've got to at least read the first page!" So I cracked the book and the first chapter is less than two pages! It is so concise and arbitrary and funny. Here is a taste:

   "The train only went as far as Gompville, which was the county seat of Morning County and fifty miles away by stagecoach to Billy. It was a cold clear down with a half-a-dozen sleepy dogs standing there barking at the train.
   "Gompville," Cameron said.
   Gompville was was the headquarters of the Morning County Sheepshooters Association that had a president, a vice-president, a secretary, a sergeant at arms and bylaws that said it was all right to shoot sheep."

Author Clarification

   "Just because you write doesn't make you an author. It's the ability to procrastinate and hate yourself for not writing that makes you an author."

—Old Author Saying

Saturday, March 26, 2022

In Search of The Yahoo Kid & Mexican Monte Players

 March 26, 2022

  On the trail of the Yahoo Kid? Oh, yes. Crazy, huh?

 Jammin' on more coaster art and Old Vaquero Sayings.

Daily Whip Out: "Mexican Monte Players #1"

More Mexican Monte Players.

Daily Whip Out: "Mexican Monte Players #2"

   Almost there. This will illustrate this old saw.

"The less you bet, the more you lose when you win."

—Old Vaquero Sying

Friday, March 25, 2022

Weed Whacking Friday Plus Three Brewster Wagons And Three Cars at Picacho

 March 25, 2022

We hired a weed whacker crew to clear off the re-emerging Globe Chamomile on our property, which is a bad, bad fire excellerant. 

   This is the blower dude, cleaning out the chopped stinkweed. Dusty job, but someone has to do it.  

   Actually, this is a pretty good view of the old mining road on Continental Mountain. See the switchbacks snaking up the side, behind the middle saguaro?

Strength In Numbers Disappears

   In the Olive Oatman story, her family pushed on from the disintigrating Brewster wagon train that started out 43 wagons strong from Independence, Missouri, Missouri, in August of 1850, bound for the edenesque-named Land of Bishan. After a stopover in Socorro, New Mexico, (where half the wagon train quit the journey, including the prophet Brewster) the Oatmans pushed on, traveling down the Rio Grande, dipping into Mexico, before veering west, then up the Santa Cruz River to the Old Pueblo. After a brief stay in Tucson they pushed on north and by the time they passed Picacho Peak there were only three wagons left.

Daily Whip Out: "Three Wagons Remained"

 And, here is that same scene in the 1920s.

Three cars passing Picacho in the 1920s

"History doesn't repeat itself, but it does rhyme."

—Mark Twain

Thursday, March 24, 2022

Going Bonkers & Going Coasters

 March 24, 2022

   After getting skunked Monday at my history talk, I drove over to Cattletrack Arts Compound and had a creative meeting with Mark McDowell about our forthcoming book, "Old Vaquero Sayings." While we were looking at some of his rough layouts he asked me what I thought about offering "free coasters" to promote the book. Or, he added, did I think that might be "too cheesy?"

   My honest reply was, "Are you kidding me? That is the funniest come-on I have heard, in a long, long time." I grew up on the glories of S&H Green Stamps and free Blakely tumblers with a tank of gas, so, I actually think Mark's idea is dangerously close to being genius.

Daily Whip Out: "Free Blakely Tumblers"

      When it comes to traditional coaster art, you can't get too cheesy for me. I absolutely love this.

Coyote Wooden Coaster Art

   And, this.

Wood Ducks Wooden Coaster Art

   So, here's Dan The Man's first pass at a Triple B Old Vaquero Coaster Design:

Dan The Man's Coaster Design, Front

Dan The Man's Coaster Design, Back

   As a matter of fact, I think this idea is so good it may just be the ultimate cart before the horse, the tail that wags the dog and the mouse that roared, "Hey, Pendejo! Forget the book—Go coaster, coast to coast!"

"Collect them all!"

 —Proposed punchline to the coaster promo

Wednesday, March 23, 2022

The Bottom Line On Being Skunked

 March 23, 2022

   Regarding yesterday's skunking, I got this from a historian-musician-author friend down Nogales way.

Skunked By BBB

  "One time semi-long ago Tombstone had an actual bookstore. I was invited to do a talk about my Badger Clark book. Badger actually lived near Tombstone for four years which was about twice the time spent there by the Earps. It was a typical Tombstone weekend with dozens of costumed old people walking up and down the streets. I was happy to recite some of Badgers well known verse or share some of his prose. I was happy to sing some well known cowboy songs which were Clark’s poetry put to music. I didn’t sell a single book that day. Oh, the store sold many books while I labored on, mostly by some fellow named Bob Boze Bell!"

—Greg Scott

   Okay, first of all, I loved that bookstore across from Hafford's Corner in Tombstone and miss it every time I go down there.  Anyway, you bring up a great point. While I'm whining about getting skunked you were getting skunked by my books! That is so rich—and so ironic. And, to underline your point, I remember being at a bookstore on east Speedway in Tucson, where Linda McCartney used to come in and just sit and read books. This was in the early nineties and I was there for a book signing with Will Rogers' son, Will Rogers, Jr. In fact, the day I was there Fritz Scholder showed up to buy books as well. To say I was star struck is a bit of an understatement.  At the end of the day I sold maybe six to ten books while Will Rogers, Jr. sold hundreds of books with a line going out the door. The book store owner told me afterwards he bought Rogers' books "by the case."  Man, was that depressing and humiliating. 
   Will Rogers, Jr. died a week, or so, later, from a self-inflicted gun shot to the head.
   So, there you go. I realized the amount of books Will Jr. sold that day, apparently didn't contribute much to his happiness. In the long run, if you're healthy, and you are hopeful, the rest really doesn't matter, does it?

Graveyard In The Sky
By Cattletrack photographer Carl Schultz,
who is a fellow Cave Creekian

The Secret
"The secret to life is something to do, someone to love and something to hope for."
—Old Vaquero Saying

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

Skunked, Stumped & In A Funk

 March 22, 2022

  I got skunked yesterday. Spoke to a group of about 50 women in Scottsdale and they didn't buy one book. Several took free True West magazines, but not one book sale. I was stung, of course, and all the way home I kept thinking to myself, what is the lesson to be learned here? What could I have said differently that might have changed the dynamic?

   I was stumped, skunked, and, in a funk.

   So, I got up this morning, 14 years to the day that I played "Wipeout" in Kingman, and I saw a paperback in a stack of books on the ledge by the fireplace in our bedroom and I picked it up, wondering if there was, perhaps a lesson in the first lines of the novel. Here's what it said.

   "So this is what it feels like to be hunted. My spine is pressed up against the bark of a pine tree. My heart hammers against my rib cage with astonishing force. Here they come again. Here comes the big dented old Chevy pickup with its engine roaring and its high-beam lights swinging through the darkness and the trees. The men in the truck are drunk and they have rifles and now there are other men on foot looking for me with flashlights.
   "Why? I have done nothing to them. I pose no threat. Nor do the men imagine that I pose a threat. They are hunting me because I'm a stranger in their territory and the nearest law is three hours away over a potholed and bandit-infested road and because they are the type of men who pride themselves on their willingness to kill."
—Richard Grant, in the prologue to "God's Middle Finger"

   That is a damn fine piece of writing. Inspiring, compelling and a joy to read. Being skunked is par for the course and just one of the bumps in the road. After all is said and done, I am just damn happy to be here.

Daily Scatchboard Whip Out: "Badges?"

Special Bonus Whip Out

Daily Whip Out: "When The Fist Is Near"

"When the law is far, the fist is near."
—Old Vaquero Saying

Monday, March 21, 2022

Another Trip Into The Beast And This Dog Has Grown

March 21, 2022

   Got a big one in the Beast today. A speech at noon, a trip to the art store, choosing mattes for my giclee prints, "Virgil In Prescott" and a meeting with the boys at Cattletrack on our book, "Old Vaquero Sayings."

   Okay, here's an update. Uno napping by the studio stove on March 26, 2021.

All legs and No Cattle

   And, here's Uno drying off after a dip in the pool this morning. 

Uno Dries Off

   I know, I know, he's grown into a cross between an antelope and a giraffe!

"The creative adult is the child who survived."
—Old Artist Saying

Sunday, March 20, 2022

Notes On The Graveyard Shift

 March 20, 2022

   Got an anniversary coming up in two days, and yes, it involves the classic, surf tune "Wipeout." How I got an extra 14 years on the planet (I know, counting my chickens before they hatch!) is beyond my skill set.

   And, speaking of limited skill sets, I am still holding out on finding a new and better trade route to producing better artwork. One of the ways I seek this out, is to go at it from another direction. For one thing, I'm always going on about the "Old Vaqueros" and, just for grins, I thought I'd feature a different age group. 

Daily Whip Out:

"Middle Age Vaquero"

Somehow, I have a hunch better artwork involves letting go. I have known this since my U of A Art College days, but I never have truly embraced it. It takes courage to do it, and, well, you know. . . Of course, I am enamored of dust, so, there's that.

Daily Whip Out:

"Mickey Free On The Hunt"

   And, if you must see, here I am in today's posting in my sketchbook talking to myself.

Daily Whip Out: "Go Upside Down"

Daily Whip Out: "Black Beauty"

"Big shoes are back again."

—Cornership, "Funky Days Are Back Again"

Night Crawlers

   Here's someone who will definitely turn up in a story about a graveyard shift service station attendant who meets all these weirdos who cross the desert at night.

The Burro Lady

"An old thing becomes new if you detach it from what usually surrounds it."

—Robert Bresson, French film director 

Saturday, March 19, 2022

My Favorite Jackasses In History

 March 19, 2022

   Sometimes I get tired of writing about all the jackasses in history and I find myself graviting towards the real thing. Chalk it up as a cleansing of the palette kind of thing.

   One of my all time, favorite Old West sayings is: "He was grinnin' like a jackass eatin' prickly pear."

Daily Whip Out:

"Grinnin' Like A Jackass Eatin' Prickly Pear"

And a close second, all time favorite saying:

"He was noisier than a jackass makin' love in a tin shed."

—Old Jackass Saying

   And speaking of jackasses who ran out of luck, here's one final run at the Dalton's coverage for the May issue.

Daily Whip Out:

"The Daltons Were Gobsmacked in Coffeyville."

   All their well laid plans went up in flames.

"I want one of those."

—Overheard on a steep trail where a pack mule got bumped and slipped off the narrow and rocky path, slid toward a precipitous cliff, but reached out with his hooves and stopped himself, then methodically inched his way back up away from the abyss until he regained the trail, shook himself off and continued on as if nothing had happened.

Friday, March 18, 2022

Was Wild Bill Too Good for His Own Good?

March 18, 2022

    In the annals of the Old West gunfighters, one name stands head and shoulders above all the rest and that is this guy. 

Wild Bill Stands Tall

By all accounts he walked the walk and almost single-handedly created the legend of the town-taming lawman who was quicker on the draw than all his adversaries put together. It is a known fact, that Hickok put on numerous shooting exhibitions, so we know that he was a crack shot and several contemporaries of his testified that he was very quick in retrieving his pistols. But was he perhaps too fast for his own good?

The Town Tamer
   He was a lawman as early as 1858, being elected constable of Monticello township, Kansas. And, so all thru the 1860s he acted in one capacity or another as a lawman. He quickly caught on, what he needed to do to survive. Hickok was appointed as a lawman in Hays City, Kansas in August of 1869. He escaped several assassination attempts and he becomes cautious when patrolling the streets of the roaring cowtown. He avoids sidewalks and especially dark alleys. He allows no one to get too close or approach him from the back. He takes to walking down the center of North Main Street, eyes scanning the saloons for potential trouble.

August 24, 1869
   Newly elected Hays City Marshall, Wild Bill is accosted by Billy Mulrey, who levels two pistols at the lawman. Before he can fire Hickok waves his hand past Mulrey and yells, "Don't shoot him in the back! He's drunk!" When Mulrey turns, Wild Bill shoots him dead. In September Hickok shoots another miscreant Sam Strawhim who is breaking up a saloon in a rage. The townspeople, perhaps tired of the violence and shootings, do not re-elect Hickok.

July 17, 1870
   Hickok gets in a fight with 7th Cavalry Troopers in Paddy Welch's Saloon in Hays City, Kansas. While one of the soldiers comes up from behind and bear hugs Wild Bill and throws him to the floor, another soldier, John Kile, whips out a hidden Remington pistol and puts "the muzzle into Wild Bill's ear and snapped it." The pistol misfires. Hickok manages to retrieve one of his pistols and fires hitting Lonnegan in the wrist and then the knee. Hickok scrambles to his feet, makes tracks to the back of the saloon and jumps thru a window, taking the glass and sash with him. . ."

April, 1871
   Hickok takes the job as city marshal of Abilene, Kansas at a salary of $150 a month. In June he puts up printed notices informing all persons that the carrying of fire arms in Abilene, will not be tolerated and that the ordinance will be enforced.

The Last Gunfight

   The 1871 cattle season in Abilene has been rough with cattle drovers facing financial losses. Some have pushed their herds on to Waterville, while some stay in Abilene hoping for higher prices. Wild Bill Hickok has been the town marshal for eight months with a spotless record. But, of course, he is not liked by the visiting Texans because he shut down all the brothels, the month before on the order of the city council. On the evening of October 5, 1871, some 50 idled Texas cowboys want to attend the Dickinson County Fair, but heavy rains sully that venue, so the boys wander from saloon to saloon on the main drag, bullying and intimidating patrons into buying them drinks. It was called "Hurrahing" and the boys would round up some unsuspecting bystander and raise him up over their heads like a conquering king and rush him up to the bar to salute him. The unspoken but implied message was for the newly crowned king to buy everyone a drink. There are some accounts that the cowboys pulled this on Hickok and swept him off his feet and carried him into the Alamo Saloon where he humored them with a round of free drinks.

   There had been rumors that Texas gambler Phil Coe had sworn to get Wild Bill "before the frost." It is not known what exactly prodded Coe into making this pronouncement but Hickok being a Yankee lawman was probably enough justification for the provocation.

   At about 9 p.m. Wild Bill hears a shot fired outside the Alamo Saloon. Having already warned the cowboys against carrying firearms, he goes out the swinging doors to investigate. He immediately spots Phil Coe with a drawn pistol in his hand and quite a few cowboys around him.

   Coe claims he fired at a stray dog, but as he says this, he pulls another pistol and fires twice at Hickok, one ball going through Wild Bill's coat and the other thudding into the boardwalk between the lawman's legs. Hickok reacts in a flash and "as quick as thought," as the Abilene Chronicle put it the next day, Wild Bill pulls his two Colt Navy revolvers and fires both, hitting Coe in the stomach. Coe lurches about until he collapses, and a couple of the cowboys standing behind him are also hit and they react. In the pause that follows, Wild Bill is on high alert as he looks to see who else among the cowboys will take up the fight. He hears footsteps coming rapidly from his right and as he turns he sees the harsh outline of another assaillant with a pistol in his hand, and Hickok instantly fires, killing Michael Williams, a personal friend and the city jailer, who had responded to the shooting and was hurrying to see if he could help.

   Wild Bill orders all the cowboys to disperse and, incredibly they do, carrying off Coe and the other wounded cowboys. Hickok carries the dying Williams into the Alamo and lays him on a pool table. As his friend lay dying, Hickok, in a rage, turns and orders all the Texans to clear out of town, immediately. Within an hour the entire place is deserted.

Eulogized Or Demonized

   As is usual in these kind of affairs, the press takes up the Coe-Hickok gunfight, and the two participants are either demonized or eulogized, depending on which side is doing the telling. In the Kansas newspapers Coe is described as "a red-mouthed, bawling. thug plug ugly, dangerous beast," but in Texas Coe is described as "a kind and generous hearted man well thought of by all who knew him." Hickok is describe as a "blood thirsty wretch," in the Texas telling, 

Wild Bill's Remorse

   In addition to paying for William's funeral and personally apologizing to Mike's widow, Wild Bill doesn't resign, but he is relieved of his duties in December as city marshal and never works as a lawman again. He has five years to live.

    His greatest strength turned out to be his greatest weakness: his speed became a deadly liability. Five years later, his luck ran out and his celebrity standing brought him down and ended his life.

   The moral being, sometimes you can be too good, for your own good.

"For everything you gain you will lose something. For everything you lose you will gain something."

—Old Vaquero Saying

  But in the end, the thing I love the most about Wild Bill is that he had a great sense of humor.

"Pretty near all these stories are true."

—Wild Bill Hickok

   Given what we now know about the Prince of The Pistoleers, that is hilarious.

Thursday, March 17, 2022


 March 17, 2022

   Ten years ago today our son, Thomas Charles got married on the back patio. It was a good day for him and for us.

   I have been covering the Dalton Gang's raid on Coffeyville for a very long time. This is from my cartoon book, "Low Blows," in 1984.

Daily Flashback Whip Out:

"Groucho Kills In Death Alley"

The Mapinator

   Thanks to the late, great, Gus Walker ("The Mapinator") our readers are about to experience the best step by step, blow by blow, maps and visuals on the Dalton debacle at Coffeyville, Kansas in 1892.

Gus Walker (1943-2014)

   If memory serves me correctly, Gus spent over three weeks on the project, tracking all of the participants and labeling all of the streets and buildings in the dramatic and tragic gunfight. Also, deserving kudos for their wonderful work are our crack design team, led by True West art director, Dan The Man Harshberger and Robert Ray, our production manager. Excellent editorial tweaks were provided by Mark Boardman and Stuart Rosebrook. The combined effort gives you the best explanation of how a daring raid went south, quick, and why it's still talked about today.

   And, lest you think this is all rah-rah hornblowing, Here is the author's response to the layout and design: 

"I have over 400 articles in print, and I’ve grown philosophical about how magazines have handled the art direction around my work. However, I have never seen a more thorough, tasteful job of enhancing one of my pieces, both verbally and pictorially. I’m [expletive] gobsmacked. Many thanks for doing an absolutely spectacular job."

—Ron Soodalter, author of our cover story on The Daltons vs. Coffeyville

   So, what does "gobsmacked" actually mean?   It's a cousin to "taken aback," "slack-jawed," "stunned"or, "utterly astonished." Technically, "Gobsmacked" is a combination of smack ("to hit") and gob, which was originally a Northern English, Scottish and Irish word for "mouth," which makes it literally "mouth-slapped."

Wednesday, March 16, 2022

A Vivid Memory of Monument Valley

 March 16, 2022

   Painters call it a "happy accident." That's when crazy circumstance collides with luck to create something beyond what was intended. Here is a very good example.

BBB at The Mittons In Monument Valley
After A Rainstorm

Photo by Lucinda Amorosano

This is perhaps my most favorite photograph of myself, ever. I even love the car in the mid-background. And especially the arc of the water running at lower, right, in the same arc as the double rainbow. Here's what I said about it in 2012 on my blog after a park ranger asked me if the image was Photoshopped:

   Yes, the photo is real. Last summer me and my True West crew got to Monument Valley at about five p.m. in the middle of a thunderstorm. Looked like we couldn't film (we were there videotaping for a Westerns Channel project). We drove down off the mesa where the View Hotel is, and at the second turn, the rain stopped and a double rainbow arced over the left Mitten. We quickly jumped out to tape a True West Moment and as Ken Amorosano scrambled to set up the camera, I jumped a rivulet of water, climbed the berm and turned around for the signal to start taping. Lucinda Amorosano snapped this photo just before, or just after I started my spiel. She shot another ten or twelve photos but this one just pops. I think it's my favorite photo of any that have been taken of me (appearing to stand tall, in a tall place, maybe? Ha.).  One of those happy accidents as we painters are fond of saying.

"We are our memory, we are that chemical museum of inconsistent forms, that pile of broken mirrors." —Jorge Luis Borges

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Hawking Books Before I Was Born And The Whole Shebang

 March 15, 2022

   My Albuquerque compadre, Steve Todd, sent me this old photograph taken in Cimarron, New Mexico. He claims it shows me hawking my Billy the Kid book at an event at the Saint James Hotel, front row, kneeling.

Triple B book hawker, circa before I was born

   Okay, I had Rebecca Edwards blow up the photo and I'll be dang-nab-it, take a gander at this!

BBB Proof Positive!

      I'm still obsessed with dust in all of its permeations.

Daily Whip Out:

"He Spotted the Chalkline Trail

As He Topped The Pass"

Praise From A Well Known Speaker Who Wishes to Remain Anonymous

"Just a short note to give you a big atta boy for what you have done for the real true west and for TW mag, and related projects. Well done! I am a long time historian, writer, public speaker in a very unrelated field. I had seen your mag, many times in the past but have just become a steady reader in the past year. I got my first recent copy a while back from my barber shop. Now I get it from a newsstand. Your scholarship and the quality of your writings is superb! My wife is a retired magazine editor and layout specialist and she too is quite impressed. Keep up the good work and don't forget to train your successors."

   Sometimes good looking women just show up in our driveway wearing the coolest hats.

Dang, Ali, That's The Whole Shebang

"We're three-quarters grizzly bear and two-thirds car wreck and descended from a stock market crash on our mother's side. You take your Germany, France, and Spain, roll them together, and it wouldn't give us room to park our cars."

—P.J. O'Rourke (1947-2022), describing ordinary Americans