Never Dull! – Chapter One

Chapter 1 

Live in the Moment

All good cowboys have a pocket knife clipped inside their front pocket in case a horse gets caught up in a rope. A good horse is hard to come by, and accidents can happen anytime. Always be prepared, no matter what life throws at you.

My mom, Marian Roddy went to the 1959 Cow Palace Rodeo to compete in barrel racing. After the rodeo, all the cowboys went to the bar. It was a rowdy place filled with cowboys who were either celebrating or drowning their sorrows after they competed. You had to be very sure of yourself to go in there.

Right after her run, she wanted to celebrate. She put her horse, Chongo, away in his stall, took off her cowboy hat, brushed her long ponytail, and put on some lipstick to go down the street to the Log Cabin Bar. Marian was only 19 but looked almost exactly like her sister Nancy who was 21. Armed with her sister’s ID, she elbowed past the cowboys to order a drink at the bar. As she passed steer wrestler John W. Jones, he grabbed her ponytail to pull her back from the bar. 

She instinctively put her hands on her head. “Hey!”

In one swift motion, John W took out his pocket knife, flicked it open, and cut off her ponytail above the bow. As she spun around, he handed it to her. He said, “Every cowboy in here wants a piece of your tail.”

Every woman in the place was mortified, including John W’s wife, JoAnn. All the cowboys were howling with laughter. Marian was stunned and stood there for a second with her mouth hanging open and holding her ponytail. She reached up and ran her fingers through what was left of her hair. “Am I on Candid Camera?”, she laughed and headed for the bathroom. “I’ve got to look in the mirror. This is a joke, right?”  

Another barrel racer followed her in and came out to the bar after a few minutes. 

A cowboy asked, “Is she crying?”

“No. She sent me out here to get a knife.”

Another cowboy asked, “Is she planning a murder or suicide?” The crowd roared. The bartender handed her a pair of scissors. She went back to the bathroom and helped Marian cut her hair.

Marian came out with a new hairdo that looked even cuter than before. She shouted, “Jones is buying the whole bar a round of drinks!” Everyone cheered. Above the roar, she told John W, “And you! You are buying me drinks forever!”

Over the years, that story was told many times, and Mom would laugh all over again. “Well, what was I going to do? It was too late. My hair was already gone. Party on!”

What a great attitude. She was always looking forward and never cried over spilled milk. Her mantra was, “Live in the moment; you can’t change the past.” 

That attitude would serve her well for the rest of her life.

Heather Sharp Avatar

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