Colt’s .44; or Western History Triggers Countdown

On January 4, 1847, Samuel Colt sold his first revolver to the United States government, allowing buckskinned frontiersmen and uniformed soldiers everywhere to sheathe their Bowie knives and mail their powder-and-ball kits to their poorer relations.

When Samuel Colt, cigar clamped manfully between his teeth, shook hands on the deal for one thousand .44-caliber revolvers to be . . . → Read More: Colt’s .44; or Western History Triggers Countdown

A Happy New Year from Cowboylands; or, We All Have a Flaming Star So Get Going!

May 2011 be sparkly bright, dear readers and bloggers way out in the Wild Western Web, in my hometown in western PA (and you too, WV), NYC bloggers and dear friends, and FB cyberpals and Twitter cybertrail buddies…

May it be as bright as Graceland’s crystal chandelier

As big as Graceland’s hall of . . . → Read More: A Happy New Year from Cowboylands; or, We All Have a Flaming Star So Get Going!

New Grit; or, The Coen Brothers Remake Retribution

Vengeance is mine, saith the main character of True Grit, because I hath paid good money for it. So begins the saga of a trail of revenge from so-called civilized town to wilderness, a narrative trail so often traveled in westerns that it’s become like a tame, broad, well-lit avenue with stoplights.

The players: Grizzled, troubled veteran with heart . . . → Read More: New Grit; or, The Coen Brothers Remake Retribution

One Name Stands Out of All the Rest; or, Bat Masterson’s Song of Myself

Every night that I remember to pray (after a good slug of whiskey to provide the appropriate gravitas), I pray for my family, my friends, my Urban Cowboy, my godless country (for if more Americans prayed, for example health insurance execs, we would have better health care). On good days I sprinkle in a.) when it’s . . . → Read More: One Name Stands Out of All the Rest; or, Bat Masterson’s Song of Myself

From William S. Hart to the Dude; or, We Have Met the Hero, and He Is Us

In the 1920s, William S. Hart was the icon of the West. As well as Uncle Sam, a shining-knight cowboy, west-ho adventurer, and all-around patriotic patriarchal figure.

Thirty years later, John Wayne became the next icon of choice for manly men everywhere. Embodying home and hearth as well as risky adventure, Wayne’s shade of derring-do was equally . . . → Read More: From William S. Hart to the Dude; or, We Have Met the Hero, and He Is Us

National Punctuation Day; or Gratuitous Steve McQueen Pic

In honor of National Punctuation Day, a day revered by comma geeks everywhere, I hereby give formal thanks herewith, in perpetuity, without exception, to the heretofore unjustly ignored stylistic convention, long forgotten and usually misunderstood, and not to be confused by the subtitle, which in itself is of great worthiness to nonfiction writers, as it allows, . . . → Read More: National Punctuation Day; or Gratuitous Steve McQueen Pic

The Truth and Nothing but the Truth; or, Bucko’s View

I love the West but could never live anywhere but  New York City. Just saying.

But a lovely hacienda facing some buttes would be . . . → Read More: The Truth and Nothing but the Truth; or, Bucko’s View

Pardon Me?; or, Clemency for Billy the Kid, 129 Years Later

Billy the Kid pardoned????

Say it isn’t so. He wouldn’t be the archetypal 1880s bad-boy outlaw anymore–that sexy beast who wants to be tamed, played by handsome hunks in 46 (no lie) silver-screen westerns.

If he is pardoned by New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, it would be

a.) justice finally given to the young man who . . . → Read More: Pardon Me?; or, Clemency for Billy the Kid, 129 Years Later

A Mayor Cowboy Fail; or, Bloomberg’s Sheridan Moment

The conflict: New York State wants to collect taxes on tribal sales of cigarettes.

The background: Can’t say I know or will understand in the little time I have left to read the news today. But once sovereign nations and big-ass cocky states get into a brouhaha, you know there’s going to be mucho macho. And Mayor . . . → Read More: A Mayor Cowboy Fail; or, Bloomberg’s Sheridan Moment

Western Tweets and Posts; or Revisiting the Wild Western Web

Nothing like a dash of reality, I say, especially if they don’t make me ride a horse.

By “they” I mean the real-life cowboys/girls in the world, who blog about getting hay baled and sucking up mud before breakfast. Those riproaring mofos who tweet about 100-degree heat as they work with cattle or mules or horses and . . . → Read More: Western Tweets and Posts; or Revisiting the Wild Western Web