June 14, 2023
Thanks to Mark Lee Gardner for recommending a very good book on the partisan warfare in Missouri: "Inside War: The Guerrilla Conflict During The American Civil War" by Michael Fellman. The author does a masterful job describing in gritty detail the breakdown of society—and humanity—both in Missouri and Kansas in the lead up to the war. One aspect I had never heard of before, is the border ruffians referred to as "pukes."
Daily Whip Out: "Jesse The Puke"
"Missouri Pukes were feared by their northern neighbors as dirt-wallowing, elemental brutes, suspended in a comatose state between bouts of primitive violence."
The first thing you have to realize in the Jesse James story is that he was not a cowboy. Almost all the movies and the legion of outlaw stories about him want to clothe him in outlaw cowboy garb with a big ol' hat. He was everything and anything but that. Although you know me, I can't resist a big ol' hat (see above!). But the truth is in most of the surviving photograph Jesse appears to prefer a modest style hat, sort of a Missouri farmer meets a riverboat gambler, pork pie job.
One more for the road:
Just got word that a History Channel gig I was up for passed on my participation. Here's a good friend's take on it.
"I have usually had nothing but ill-timed or bad luck with Hollywood types. Their attitudes usually also are like a bunch of malcreados! or sin verguenzas!"
The Spanish words malcreados and sin verguenzas roughly translates as spoiled scoundrels. Lynda translates it to mean "Impolite or ill-mannered brats without shame, wanting to manipulate and to hell with the truth." Amen.