Mad Jack Hanks: Tales from the O-NO Ranch 4-18-11
For a number of years, gentle readers, I was a field representative for Cowboy Magazine. That might sound a little “puffy” or somehow glamorous to some of you. Trust me, it wasn’t. It was fun and I enjoyed it very much.
Mostly I would illustrate stories that “punchers” had sent to the magazine about their personal experiences that they felt were entertaining enough that most folks would enjoy them. On occasion I would go out to a large ranch and work with the cowboy crew, take some photos and send in the story to the editor for publication. Every now and then I would go interview some celebrity with some cowboy standing in the cowboy’s world. The magazine is no longer in publication as many magazines and newspapers were victims of the economy. Darrell Arnold, the editor, owner and publisher of Cowboy Magazine put together a hardback book he titled “The Cowboy Kind.” In this book are photos, stories and quotes from working ranch cowboys from across the country.
One particular little story came from a Great Basin buckaroo by the name of Bill Black. In my opinion this illustrates one day in the life of a sure “nuff” puncher. Bill tells it like this:
One time I had this blue roan horse that was a little spoiled. I hadn’t put a name on this horse as yet. I had my stirrups tied. I was on a big ole circle and this guy I bought him from said that we could turn steers on him, but he had a little buck in him. So I figured he had been roped on. Well, every time I would swing a rope he would run with me, so I’d double him around. I doubled him over and over all day long. He took off runnin’ with me so I figured we’d just run a little faster so I stuck him (with spurs). He bucked once and he went down and rolled twice. He smashed my hat while my head was still in it and that’s when he got the name Sombrero. He bruised me up pretty good and I had a hard time breathing so I called my dad for a little sympathy. The same day I named this horse dad got in a wreck with a bull and got smashed in a gate. This ole boy with my dad says, “Just lie there Jeff and I’ll go get some help.” Dad says he couldn’t think of a better thing to do. Turns out he was hurt worse than I was and I was the one wantin’ sympathy. Sombrero turned out to be a pretty good horse. I rode him two years and he was always tight.
I hope you gentle readers understood all that cowboy talk. We do have a way talkin’ strange at times and there have been times that the Fence Post staff, bless their hearts, have not always understood my strange lingo. Cowboys, the kind that put “cowboy” on their tax return are in a class of their own.
Stay tuned, check yer cinch on occasion and I’ll c. ya’ll, all ya’ll.