Petersen: New Years resolutions in the Home for Old Cowboys | TheFencePost.com

Petersen: New Years resolutions in the Home for Old Cowboys

Gwen Petersen
Big Timber, Mont.

Cowboy Jake and Cowboy Jerome sat in side-by-side rockers in the lounge of the Home for Old Cowboys. It was New Year's Day, 2017.

They had just finished their noon dinner and were enjoying an after-dinner apple cider libation and a thoughtful discussion on the merits of New Year's resolutions.

Neither Jake nor Jerome are fond of apple cider straight. But you can make any beverage more palatable if you add tequila, which blends especially nicely with cider and also lubricates conversation.

Jerome considers the cider-tequila combination his "recipe."

Jerome: "Jake, you thinkin' about makin' some resolutions for 2017?"

Jake: "We're old, Jerome. Resolutions don't work once you git to our ages."

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Jerome: "You got a point. But if you were going to resolve something, what would ya?"

Jake (thoughtfully): "Resolutions are mostly wishes, ain't they? Like I'd wish I could be younger, smarter and better lookin'."

Jerome: "Well, that ain't gonna happen."

Jake: "Guess not. So what kinda resolutions would you make if you had the smarts to make 'em come true?"

Jerome pondered and rocked for quite a few seconds. "I'd outlaw or change all the confusing modern stuff I don't like, don't understand and refuse to learn."

Jake: That's kinda negative, ain't it? Resolutions are s'pposed to be positive and hopeful. You know make the world a better place. Peaceful and such-like."

Jerome quaffed a swallow of cider. "I don't do positive. I figure being so close to the end gate of life, I might as well make negative resolutions 'bout all the stuff that bugs me."

Jerome's list of negative New Year's Resolutions:

Resolved: Make facebook against the law.

Resolved: Ditto Twitter.

Resolved: Ditto Instagram.

Resolved: Ditto Twitter.

Resolved: Ditto "smart" phones and anything referred to as an "app."

Resolved: Use of any of the above devices and applications by politicians, phone solicitors or evaluators to be considered a felony, punishable by fines, lengthy jail terms or hanging.

Resolved: Individuals, who insist on standing an inch from one's face when speaking, to be expectorated upon.

Resolved: People, who insist on hugging one as if they're hugging a family pet, shall be smacked.

Resolved: Those who repeat word for word what has just been uttered, shall be asked, "What'd you say?"

At about that moment, Anna — an aide at the Home for Old Cowboys — approached and asked if Jake and Jerome would like a refill of cider. J and J held out their mugs.

Smiling cheerfully, Anna-the-Aide observed: "Well boys, it's a brand new year. Have you made any resolutions?"

"No ma'am," said Jake.

"Not a one," said Jerome.

"Well, Happy New Year anyway," said Anna-the-Aide and sashayed away.

"Resolved," said Jake, "Never admit nothin'."

"Ain't gonna argue with that," declared Jerome as he reached in his boot for his tequila flask. He gestured to Jake. "You want yer cider topped off?"

Jake: "Resolved: Never turn down an offer of the recipe."

Jake and Jerome spent a pleasant afternoon developing negative resolutions. Twice more, Anna-the-Aide came by with more cider. It was a most pleasant afternoon on New Year's Day 2017 in the Home for Old Cowboys.

Later, as they tottered off to their rooms, Jerome said, "Jake, I'm thinking of submitting my apple-cider-tequila recipe to the Cowboy Cookbook Contest for consideration in its beverage section."

Jake: "Well, now, there's a positive resolution for ya!"❖

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