Childhood Memories

So I am still drinking stiff bourbon and coke (recall the last post – just enough to color them) and I am thinking of some good old memories. One that comes to mind is of me, my brother, bikes, and a couple of tobacco sticks.

No, for those not aware, a tobacco stick is what burley tobacco here in Kentucky is speared onto (the stalk and leaves) and hung in the barn for curing. The sticks are made of oak most typically, more modern ones being sawed and old ones were split (like a rail for a fence). They are usually getting close to one inch, roughly square, though the split ones were often a little thicker in one direction. Oh, and between three and four-foot long.

Another thing for those not aware, I do jousting and sword fighting on horses today, waxing nostalgic for time period well over 600 years ago. It is no wonder considering the how often me and my younger brother did sword fighting. Often with a tobacco stalk, which is not so bad, as they give. However, often time with a tobacco stick. In case you are wondering that is one heck of a smarting blow on the fingers.

When doing this kind of thing as an eight to ten-year old, there were a few rules. Don’t hit the hands, as that hurts like heck.

Take this one step forward. We didn’t have horses at the time, but we did have bikes and a long down hill slope so you didn’t have to work to hard. We were knights on iron steeds sword fighting over our heads over and over again. Imagine a fall day, with the smell of wood smoke in the eye, damp ground, leaves already on the ground, you can also smell the horses and hear the ping of metal on metal.

What ends up happening is at some point my brother hit my fingers, hard. In anger I retaliated, by yelling, “I will get you – I will slay your horse.” And with that I stabbed the front, em, er, legs(?) of his mount.

Immediately I learned a lot of physics regarding what happens when you stop a wheel in motion by jabbing something into and how a bicycle seat suddenly resembles a catapult as my brother flew through the air like a boulder to land with a horrible sounding thud flat on his back a number of feet in front of the mount I had caught up on the end of my sword.

Thankfully my brother was only winded. The funny thing was my freaking immediately after him landing. I was at his side saying, “You gotta get up and be okay – Mom will kill us both if you are hurt – come on, get up.”

My Heroes have always been cowboys…

My heroes have always been cowboys, andCowboy chasing or roping a calf. they still are, it seems. I am sure that a number of your recognized the title of a song by Willie Nelson, himself a certain type of cowboy/hero type, but more on him and that idea later. And yes, for those that are wondering, on one of my recent late drives I put in a greatest hits of Willie and after listening, I was inspired for at least five or six blogs.

So, as to my heroes – just as the song says, I spent most of my youth dreaming of and playing at being just like one my heroes. Not sure that I learned the little bits about taking what you need from the ladies and leaving them with a sad country song until a bit later – but I am not sure that is absolutely a requirement – though I guess in reality that lonely drifter image that is unwilling to bend to anyone or anything, including progress is part of the attraction. It is certainly the reason that they are still my heroes today. Continue reading “My Heroes have always been cowboys…”