Sunday, March 31, 2024

A Few 66 Kid Characters for The Movie

 March 31, 2024

   It was Stuart Rosebrook who challenged me to come up with the characters who would be in the movie of "The 66 Kids." Here's a few (warning, a couple are perhaps too close for comfort and may need further changes) I came up with right off the bat.

• Flattop Jack: his father is in prison, his mother takes in ironing. Jack jacks around and drives fast. He is one Bad Boy. All the Good Girls are crazy about him.

Flattop Jack, sometimes referred to as
 "The Carkid"

• Lenny Leadfoot: chief rival to Flattop Jack and his Dodge Hemi

• Hank The Skank: so full of BS and ridiculous stories, who in their right mind would believe him? Oh, yes, that's right, his future wife, Ida May.

"Oh, crap, we're out of gas!"

• Big Joel Powski: In-din Humor Master

• The Yatahays: A Navajo Surf Band, led by Vincent Begay and his brothers Jimi Begay, Carlos Begay and Iffey Begay. Surprisingly, nobody in the band is gay.

The Legendary Navajo Surfband The Yatahays 

• Wendell & The Havatones: the Hualapai answer to the Yatahays. They do battle in Flagstaff at the Pow Wow Battle of the In-din Bands. Two are killed, one opens a car dealership.

Wendell & The Havatones

• Joe Hood: ex-Tombstone lawman, who resettled in Mohave County and opened Hood's Market.

(full confession: me, Boxlip Darrell, and the kids on Hall Street bought our fireballs at Hood's Market)

• Surfer Josephini: a California transplant, she started the Great Cowboy-Surfer War of 1966.
Cal Transplant Surfer Josephini

• Hanky "Panky" Panankus, famous for being the inspiration for the song lyric, "My baby does the hanky panky. . ." Probably not true, but she did, in fact, do a lot of hanky panky in and around the greater Kingman area.

Hanky Panky Doin' The Hanky Panky

• Boxlip Darrell: one foul-mouthed mo-fo. A devout Mormon, of course.

Boxlip Darrell And a Golden Valley girl

• Foxy Roxie: a ranching babe from the Big Sandy. Every cowboy in Mohave County is in love with her.

Foxy Roxie ridin' high!

• Dehlia Majestic: Mojave Maiden Extraordinaire

• Ellis Tucker: used car lot empresario

• Harry Nipple: wholesale pussy dealer

• Moon of The Mojaves: half In-din and half captivo. His mother is rumored to be Olive Oatman.

Moon of The Mojave

Hillbillies Extraordinaire

   In 1924 two Georgia boys, Gid Tanner and Riley Pucket, joined forces and created the first so-called hillbilly recording. From there Tanner formed The Skillet Lickers in 1926 and the first line-up expanded from just Gid and Riley Puckett to include Clayton McMichen and Fate Norris and between them they recorded 88 tunes for Columbia Records. Their best-selling record was "Down Yonder", a hillbilly breakdown extraordinaire.

Blind Riley Pucket of The Skillet Lickers

   Sometimes it's hard to make up anything funnier than real life. And, in this case, I won't even try.

"Growing up on Route 66, where truth is definitely stranger than fiction."

—The 66 Kid

Saturday, March 30, 2024

Stepping Off The Page And Into The Historic Elks Theater!

 March 30, 2024

   Drove up to the Mile High City yesterday to take in a play.

    L to R: Annie Oakley, Calamity Jane, Las Tules, Lotta Crabtree, The Great Western, Olive Oatman, Carrie Nation and Laura Nihell. 

   And if you don't know who all these wonderful women are, read the book and see the play!

   Kathy and I had a box seat in the historic Elks Theater in Prescott last night to see Jody Drake's wonderful presentation of "Stepping Off The Page" based on Jana Bommersbach's and my book, "Hellraisers & Trailblazers: The Real Women of the Wild West"

Jody Drake takes a victory lap at the
after party in the Palace Saloon.
(photo by Rob Mathiasch)

"We cared enough. Meet some of the women who should be in every history book."

—Jana Bommersbach

Friday, March 29, 2024

Russian Bill Is In The House

 March 29, 2024

   Here's a beauty, just for you. The original has been purchased, but we have signed prints.

Daily Whip Out: "Russian Bill"

Check it out!

"The devil is in the details."

—Old Vaquero Artist Saying

The Cowboy Surfer War of 1966 & The Battle of Perfume Pass

 March 29, 2024

   When I was a freshman at the University of Arizona in 1966, word came from home that war had broken out in my hometown. According to my mother, the upstart community of Lake Havasu City did not have any schools built, so the high school age kids had to be bussed to Kingman. They were not alone. At that time there was only one high school in the fifth largest county in the country and many kids, like those on the Big Sandy (Wikieup) had to get on the bus in the dark—in the wee hours of the morning—and got off the bus, in the dark, at night.

   If you believe my Kingman cowboy kin, the kids from Havasu were a snotty-commie bunch because they identified as surfers (Exhibit A: "Surfin' U.S.A." 1964), and this created a bit of a culture clash with the Kingman cowboys who ruled the roost at Mohave County Union High School where I barely graduated the year before, in 1965.

   According to one of the Havasu survivors, Rick Kingsbury, who wrote about this war in a book he published, "Livin' at The End of Old 95," the Havasu kids were often kicked out of stores in Kingman merely for the way they looked. Also, the high school cowboys daily threatened them in the hallways and in the bus parking lot of Mucous (our petty nickname for MCUHS). The threats escalated and a showdown grew imminent.

Looking North Towards Perfume Pass, 1940

   On a Friday word came down that the cowboys were going to ambush the Havasu surfers at the bus turnaround in front of the old building and rather than wait for the massacre, the surfers took off for home, on foot.

The Battle of Perfume Pass

   On foot, the Surfers fled the high school grounds and ended up at Perfume Pass on old Route 66 with several carloads of cowboys careening down the pungent highway looking for a rag tag gaggle of Surfer Joes to fight. According to eye-witnesses, rocks were thrown, threats were issued, but fortunately for all involved a sheriff's deputy got the call ("Surfers on the rampage!! All car proceed to Perfume Pass! I repeat, The one car we have head to Perfume Pass Pronto!") and, thus, with the arrival of an adult with a badge, bloodshed was avoided.

   So, all this past week, as I sought to make sense of the "war," and as I was talking to eye witnesses and a few of the participants it became crystal clear to me, that these must have been rough kids with unruly hair and crazy clothes and, well, you know, out-of-control-radical types. 

    This morning, thanks to Toby Orr, of Kingman, I finally got a look at one of the ringleaders in the Havasu Surfer Gang and here he is in a 1966 class photo.

Can You Spot The Punk, Radical Surfer?

That's him, in the bottom row, second from right. Unruly? Yeh. Maybe, perhaps. Sideburns? Yeh, kindah, sortah. In those innocent bygone days, the difference between the good, the bad and the ugly, is, well, I think it's safe to say, pretty slim.

"In war you win or lose, live or die, and the difference is just an eyelash."

—Douglas MacArthur

Thursday, March 28, 2024

Arizona Evening, Arizona Flag (Blame It On Edmundo Segundo!)

 March 28, 2024

   We've had some dramatic skies the last several nights and every time I go outside, I look up and go, "Dang, that is an Ed Mell painting right there. Thanks Edmundo Segundo!"

Arizona Evening, Arizona Flag. 

   Meanwhile, in the back yard. . .

Bloomer Boy

   With all the rain, the succulents are blooming like crazy. A certain dog is not impressed. "Really?" his eyes clearly convey, you want me to pose here?"

   Another steal for your eyes only. This next Daily Whip Out was featured prominently in my latest Billy the Kid book, on page 15.

On The Border With Billy spread, BtKIII

   And, here is the orginal:

Daily Whip Out: "On They Rode"

Click here for the steal

" You can't change the noodle, but you can change the sauce."

—Bonnie Raitt

Wednesday, March 27, 2024

This Just In: More BS From A Friend of Yours

 March 27, 2024

   I sure miss my good friends. We all have friends, but then there are the good friends.

BBB and Charlie Waters, on right
at the Prescott Courier, 1978, watching the first pages of Honkytonk Sue come off the press.

Edmundo Segundo

Wendell Havatone

Moon Nish
(in Dust)

Steve Burford
(and his wife Marsha)

   What do all these guys all have in common?

"Good friends call you on your bullshit, then go on listening to your bullshit."
—Old Vaquero Saying

Tuesday, March 26, 2024

Second Steal of The Week

 March 26, 2024

   Okay, don't share this, but here is the second steal of the week.

Daily Whip Out:

"Landlocked Pirates of The Sierra Madre" 

Check this out!

"Art is not what you see, but what you make others see."

—Edgar Degas

Monday, March 25, 2024

The News From Grandkidland

 March 25, 2024

   This just in from Grandkidland: 

"Fenton's teacher said he will sit at the table and draw and draw and the other kids will stand around and watch to see his cool scenes."

—Fenton's father Tom Bell 

Daily Fenton Whip Out:

"The Monster Hat Takes On Godzilla's Gang"

   Man, this makes me happy!


"The reason grandparents get along so famously with their grandchildren is that they have a common enemy."

—Old Vaquero Saying

DWO For The Early Birds

 March 25, 2024

   A special post for you early risers.

Daily Whip Out:

"Zapata Reaps The Whirlwind"

If you want to steal this, click here

"The Early Bird gets The Whip Out."

—Old Vaquero Saying

Sunday, March 24, 2024

Building New Stuff to Look Old And Cheering Up By Looking Down

 March 24, 2024

   Sometimes I take a break and sit out front of the Triple B Studios to take in the serenity. Yesterday, when I looked over to my left, I spied this:

Pump House Shadows

   Yes, my Kingman Cowboy Cousin, Craig Hamilton, built the wall and the pumphouse with these instructions from me: "Craig, I want it to look like it has been here for at least a century." And, that he did!

Craig Hamilton, at left, and his father Billy
on the Turkey Track Ranch, 1973

   Also, it must be mentioned, in the middle of the project he said to me, "Sometime would you like to see the first adobe brick I ever laid?" To which I said, yes, and, so he pointed over at the wall with his chin, "It's right over there." That is so cowboy!

   Speaking of cow-boys and the Boomers who were hired to keep them at bay.

Daily Reworked Whip Out:

"Standing On A Corner In Tombstone, Arizona, Such A Fine Sight to See, It's Virgil Earp, My Lord, The City Marshal, Slowing Down to Take At Look at Me Near Hafford's Corner"

   And then, there is his brother.

Daily Reworked Whip Out:

"Part Time Lawman, Full Time Badass."

   Both blonds by the way. See my recent BBB blog entry with the news clipping claiming most desperadoes in the Wild West were blonds.        

   Meanwhile, closer to home.

Daily Whip Out:

"Lil' Sandy From The Big Sandy"

   Her father didn't much approve, but she rode with the boys and stayed with them stride for stride and ride for ride. And she ended up in the history books but that's another story.

   I told my grandson, Weston, sometimes you need to look down to get cheered up. I was in the back yard and looked down to spy this beautiful thing.

A budding succulent

"Slow success builds character, fast success builds ego."

—Ratan Tata

Saturday, March 23, 2024

Loco Ojos (Crazy Eyes) Rides On And Strange Sights On Buck And Doe Road

 March 23, 2024

   When we repainted the studio last month I found a whole bunch of semi-discarded Daily Whip Outs that I thought might be saved. Like this one:

Daily Whip Out: "Thunderbird In The Sky"

   The Havasupais I grew up with always claimed they could spot them. Can you?

    Meanwhile, the only known photo of John Henry Holliday in Prescott is a bit fuzzy and some of my friends believe he is wearing spectacles, like this.

Daily Whip Out: "Doc In Glasses?"

Well, is he?

   Was there really a border character called "Crazy Eyes"? Hard to say. Hard to see.

Daily Whip Out: "Loco Ojos Rides On"

Strange Sights On Buck And Doe Road
   In 1956 a group of deer hunters on the Hualapai Indian Reservation claimed they saw a rather bizarre, swirling dust devil in the distance that was steadily coming towards them. As it got closer they realized it was an Indian in a war bonnet on an Indian motorcycle. All the eye-witnesses claimed the rider was grinning demonically. 

The Actual Buck and Doe Road sign
west of Peach Springs, Arizona
on old Route 66

   These same deer hunters realized too late what was happening as the motorcycle came right through their camp scattering everything to the wind, which was blowing hard because, well, this was Mohave County, for cryin' out loud. Historians now believe the deer hunters were drunk and exaggerating the incident, but ever since, in 1967 and again in 2002, several more deer hunters on Buck And Doe Road have reported seeing the same In-din on an Indian.

Daily Whip Out:
"An In-din On An Indian In In-din Country"

“A lot of you white people probably thought Indians never had a sense of humor. We never thought you were too funny either.”

—Charlie Hill

Friday, March 22, 2024

Blonds Have More Fun And More Gunfights?

March 22, 2024

   Sixteen years ago today, I all but left the planet while playing "Wipeout." Thanks to Dr. Michael Ward and Kingman Regional Hospital—and three Exits band members who had just received CPR training—I lived to meet my grandkids and go for walks with this guy. Thanks to all!

Happy Uno Day! 

   With all the rain we've been getting, it's starting to flower out out a bit. 

   Thanks to one of our favorite researchers and writers, Mark Lee Gardner, we get to take a gander at the predominance of gunfighting "blondes" on the American frontier.

The St. Louis Globe-Democrat, June 6, 1886

   Meanwhile, one of the blonds mentioned ("Erp") in the above clipping has his own story issues. The following correspondence was also found by Mark Lee Gardner.

Lake Gets Dressed Down
"You don't say?"

"You have evidently found it difficult to leave out anything. Good writing means leaving out a lot."

—Rich Kent of Houghton Mifflin Publishing, to Stuart Lake on August 29, 1930, regarding Lake's finished manuscript for Wyatt Earp: Frontier Marshal

Thursday, March 21, 2024

Diary of A Daily Whip Out: When to Stop?

 March 21, 2024

   Last weekend, one of the stragglers in the Triple B Art Studio Yard Sale came out and bought two pieces, but as Steve Enyeart looked around my studio he told me he was also was interested in buying this painting:

Daily Whip Out: "Wyatt Earp Raw!"

   This rather large, unfinished, board has bounced around, in my studio for at least 25 years. Every time I stumble across it, I think the premise is solid and I just might be able to improve it and complete it, nay save it! So, it's interesting that Steve wanted to buy it as is.

   Therein lies a tale worth telling and exploring on the road to a Daily Whip Out Keeper.

Evolution of A Whip Out: When to Stop?

   Here is a sequence that speaks to the issue. I started out with a rough idea of a Rurale coming at us straight on. Here is my first pass:

Scratchboard: "Rurale On The Jump #1"

Rurale On The Jump #2"

   To my eyes, the horse's legs are a little too truncated, the dust is a little too anti-translucent, and the foreground perhaps needs to be darker, so I took another pass.

"Rurale On The Jump #3"

   So the question remains, is the looser version stronger? Is the second verson stronger? Or, more importantly, did I work it to death? This is an endless debate—When to stop? There is an old artist saw: every artist needs another artist to stand behind him with a hammer and when the time comes to start beating him with it: "Stop! Stop! You're ruining it!"

"When you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth."
—Arthur Conan Doyle