Write Lightning is a blog from writer Deb Thompson.
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(Some links or topics may not be completely kid-appropriate.)

Mon, Jan 26 2009

I see by your outfit that you are a...ouch!

Write Lightning's secondary theme is the Old West, so I can't quite pass up a chance to comment on Rod Blagojevich likening his situation to that of a cowboy who's been hauled in by vigilantes in preparation for a hanging. It's all very colorful and dramatic. But Governor B. apparently isn't the first one to compare his current quagmire to that of a western movie star. Writer Phillip Morris already made that analogy earlier this year.

Maybe all the recent references to cowpokes and posses was brought on by the talk of mavericks in the last election. Whatever the reason, I'm glad to know a whole new generation is getting to learn more about the old expressions. There are a million ways to use these stories.

I recall a ranch-savvy woman treating my back one time when I was a pre-teen. I had accompanied her small daughter to a pasture adjacent to their property. (In rural areas and ranches it has often been perfectly acceptable to pass through someone else's property, as long as you respected their land, didn't steal their cattle and mended any fences you may have cut or damaged.) The little girl had tried valiantly to raise the bottom strand of barbed wire up for me while I bent low to pass through. But she was just a little girl and I ended up badly tearing my skin when I went under the fence. My clothing was shredded, ruined.

When the little girl's mother reached for a can of what she called cow salve she told me it worked the same way on humans as it did on cows. But I learned that the best way to avoid having to expose my skin to the cow salve in the first place was also a good metaphor for life. Maybe it's a lesson Governor Blagojevich just hadn't learned yet in Cowboy Class. It goes a little something like this. When you decide you need to go traipsing through somebody else's pasture, duck low. Move slow. And look up to be sure the one who says they can hold up the barbed wire has a firm grasp on things so you don't get the hide ripped right off your backside.

posted at: 08:56 | category: /Politics | link to this entry

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Stealin' copy is as bad as horse-thievin'
and cattle rustlin'! Lightning may strike
such varmints when they least expect it!