Ride 'Em, Cousin!

I've never met PRCA bareback bronc rider Lane McGehee from south Texas, but with that last name he's got to be a cousin of mine some way -- probably somewhere between sixth and ninth cousin at least once removed. I've seen him compete a few times this rodeo season, including at Cheyenne Frontier Days last July, but I'd been aware of him for some years, since seeing him win a high-school or college-level rodeo in Texas on RFD-TV before the Cowboy Channel debuted.

I was rooting for him to make it to the National Finals Rodeo this year, but only the top 15 competitors in each event get into that, and... he isn't in the top 15. There's always next year.

If it weren't for Lane I wouldn't really pay attention to the bareback bronc event (I've been more of a bull-rider fan); the only other bareback rider I can think of off the top of my head is Chris Ledoux. Guess that'll have to change. I do know there are some legendary riders that have been winning gold buckles in all those rodeos; I just can't think of their names right now.


Due to certain idiotic policies that kick in when someone dies, I'm unable to pay off certain debts the easy way -- online -- and so I have to write paper checks and send them via the U.S. Snail.

This requires the purchasing of postage stamps, which requires entering the lobby of a post office. Which I did today.

And was confronted with a sign on the door that said face coverings were required to enter the building.

There was one other person there and I couldn't tell whether he was masked or not, and he didn't say anything to me when I walked in bare-faced.

Still, if a future post-office visit takes place not on a Saturday, I've decided I need to be prepared. The navy blue version displays by default at that link, but I ordered the red one. Because MAGA.

By the way, did you know that it costs financial institutions more money to cash paper checks than to process online payments? And did you know that when you borrow based on a 48-month interest-free deal, 48 times the minimum payment actually works out to equal the full amount you borrowed?

This means that the financial institution to which I mailed a check today is going to lose more processing this payment than I spent on gas or a stamp.

The mask will probably put me over the finish line first though. I don't care.

The Rot

I've deleted my Disqus account again. The comment threads on Instapundit have become a monoculture of "It doesn't matter how incompetent the Democrats are at everything else; they're perfect at stealing elections so they're going to keep winning everything forever."

The entire world knows they cheated, but somehow we're all powerless to do anything about it? In a country where The People are sovereign we need officialdom -- corrupt and incompetent as we know it to be -- to punish election fraud?

I said that if comment threads advise conservatives to give up on voting, I would give up on comment threads.

It took a while, but enough is enough.


Twenty years ago this morning, several kooks from Middle Eastern countries flew four commercial passenger jets to their dooms with innocent people aboard, in an attempt to bring the United States of America to its knees.

If Osama bin Laden were still alive today -- as he would be if then-Vice President Joe Biden had had his druthers back in 2011 -- he would be kicking himself for believing the way to do that was with terrorism. Rather, he should simply have funneled money to his would-be protector's political campaigns like so many other corruptocrats and enemies of Western civilization have done over the course of his career.

It would have taken decades, and the results would have been less spectacular than the collapse of the World Trade Center's twin towers, but it would have had the advantage of succeeding -- as it appears to have done without Osama's money.

Instead, it appears poor Osama served only as a distraction, a sacrificial target for Western wrath and preparation while civilization's true enemies made good their ambition by other means.

And we fell for it.

Fool me once...


Originally posted Tuesday, August 3; bumped.

What would a rodeo cowboy do?

Trying to live by the rules foisted on us daily by our cultural elites is enough to drive a man crazy. The rules keep changing, so why comply? Compliance is futile.

I was still in school when I noticed this about eating healthy -- whatever the latest study showed, another would appear next week that contradicted it. Why comply? I decided that the most reasonable advice was simply to partake moderately of a wide variety of foods. I haven't been perfect in following that rule, but to the extent that I have, I'm sure I've avoided a lot more trouble than what I've ended up in.

In the wider context, I've concluded the best rule is to live like a rodeo cowboy. What would a rodeo cowboy do?

The most obvious defining rules observed by such men and women are be polite, play fair, and be a good sport. In short, they live by eternal verities passed down for centuries by patriotic, hard-working people who make, build, and grow what every human society needs. They don't listen to ivory-tower pointy-heads who contemplate their own navels and propose new rules we're all supposed to live by, a new set of rules every day that contradicts the day before, none of which make sense to sensible men and women. Why comply?

A rodeo cowboy goes for it; he does his best; he takes his lumps, tips his hat to the crowd, and moves on to the next rodeo. He knows about all the variables facing him in his life, and he accepts them. He takes it on faith that they'll all even out in the long run, and meanwhile he'll trust in God and the luck of the draw.

We could all do worse.

A Prayer

Lord, today marks one month since you called Mrs. McG home.

As You know my heart, You know I'm still not okay with this, and for that I beg forgiveness.

You allowed me to call her mine for a while. For that, even now, I can thank You.

I know that You do not lay on us burdens You know we cannot bear. In faith of this, I will bear this burden, and await such new purpose as You may see fit to guide me to.

A Thief of Tomorrows

Whereas with the Mrs. our default TV background noise -- especially today -- would be The Weather Channel, I've taken to having The Cowboy Channel on, at least during rodeo telecasts.

Every so often a commercial will come on mentioning the Fort Worth Stockyards, which we had the opportunity to visit back in 2002 when I accompanied her to Texas for a meteorology conference there in Cowtown.

More than once today I've heard the mention and thought that "we" ought to take another opportunity to visit there sometime.

I can still go, I suppose, but even if I went with someone else for company, my memories of that previous visit would just be so much excess baggage as far as another companion would be concerned. However understanding the new companion might be, it would get in the way of them creating their own memories.

I mentioned in a previous post that I find myself existing in two worlds. That feeling won't ever go away completely; she was part of my life for half my life.

I still have a lot of tomorrows ahead, but they're not the ones I thought I had a few weeks ago.

Lone Star Belt Buckles and Old Faded Levi's

Well, not really. I'm wearing Wranglers, and the need to chase my waist size down the scale has forced me to buy belts so hastily I can't put my choice of buckle on them.

Come to think of it, I don't have a lone-star belt buckle anyway. Various critters, or one of those Western-style designs. Maybe I should start shopping for buckles again, when I get around to buying a belt I can put one on.

Probably not a lone star though. Unless I ever actually move to Texas. I don't foresee that. Maybe a buckle with Steamboat, the legendary Wyoming saddle bronc.

Anyway. A downside of this blog format is it doesn't offer much customization, regardless of what theme I use. Some of you might have forgotten what I look like.

I don't look like you'd recognize anymore, anyway. I'm clocking under 200 pounds now for the first time since college. Used to be I'd tell myself I needed to have Mrs. McG take a new picture of me, but that's out now. I'll think of something.

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Meanwhile, here's what I looked like almost a year ago. the Mrs. took this snapshot, which I used as my headshot on the old blog, in a turnout along Highway 20/789 in the Wind River Canyon of Wyoming.

I'm toying with growing out the beard again for the winter.

I'm also toying with upgrading the blog platform for 2022.