The West Needs More Western

The American West CowboyFor many, the contemporary icon of the Western genre is that of the semi-nomadic wanderer or the knight errant–the pale rider. While that is a Western motif, it’s usually shown in contrast to the frontier, societal enclave from which fate has removed the rider.

The larger motifs of classic Western literature and film revolve around the local social order maintained by personal codes of honor that are strictly enforced. Abstract law is for sissies and Yankees. Westerns grow organically from the fertile soil of independence and libertarianism.

With a hoe in one hand and a rifle in the other, tough men and women etch meaningful existences from the harsh wilderness environment using their wit and fortitude. Those desiring to exploit the land for easy gain or to pillage others are the enemy. Most simply, the Western is a morality tale caked with dust and manure. And this, dear reader, is what I think Western civilization needs a bit more of presently (both morality and manure).

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One True Pants: Anniversary and Wake

bowed headWe’ve done it. The process has taken every bit of tensile strength OTP could muster. But the day has come. It’s official. OneTruePants are dead. Long live OneTruePants.

At midnight tonight it will have been 365 days that the same pair of hemp pants have adorned my blessed lower half. (Heroic music begins as OTP montage rolls.) We’ve had some great times together, and nothing less than the glory of the afterlife will be able to fill the drafty emptiness OTP will leave behind (in all our hearts). But the pants are truly spent.

Through summer heat, winter chill, dirty diapers, spit-up, diarrhea, dog bite, roofing, demolition, wine, chocolate, chili and BBQ, dancing, laughing, crying, two weddings and a funeral, my one true pants have been my rod and my comforter (wait, that sounds familiar).

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Redneck Sustainability: Paint Glove Philosophy

Pipe corrals suppliesSome of my uninitiated readers may yet be ignorant of such things as paint gloves or paint mitts. But they’re essentially paint brushes you wear on your hands, used mostly for painting pipe and such. As a young redneck I spent much of one glorious summer gently caressing the underbellies of mile after mile of pipe while wearing said paint glove.

The job at hand was to freshen up the pipe corrals on the family ranch which consisted of enough lots, runs, gates, chutes and ladders to create a dozen life-sized redneck versions of the child’s board game. Lest you think I exaggerate, I’ve included a photograph of a stockpile of metal pipe of which I’m sure would be insufficient to represent the amount of pipe constituted by our corrals.

The six-pipe-high corral, (redneck maze of pipe) equalled a butt-load of rustoleum red paint and a couple dozen lambs wool paint gloves.┬áIf it hadn’t of been for the tinny, ranch truck radio set to 94.9 the EDGE and basking me in Depeche Mode’s Personal Jesus, and Matthew Sweet’s Girlfriend, I would have truly gone mad.

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