Saturday, August 02, 2008

Blazing Hot Saturday... at the Secret Hidden Bunker in the Rocky Mountains. After the last two winters, not complaining, mind you. The parrots are eating it up, as long as we occasionally spritz them down in their outdoor aviary.

I don't know if I mentioned it, but the Sweetie and I recently closed on the 35 acres west of Loveland. It's a pretty spectacular piece of property, views all the way down the Front Range and a little less nose-bleed altitude than the current Bunker. Our plan is to build an off-grid house sometime in the next couple of's probably the best area in the country for solar and wind power.

I've been reading — with envyArmed and Dangerous' saga of his summer at Sword Camp, a combination of science fiction, martial arts, guns, long sharp things and zombies. Damn...that rocks! Maybe next summer DRTV and SHOOTING GALLERY should sponsor something similar, give away free slots.

BTW, I've finished "recasting" SHOOTING GALLERY to reflect THE BEST DEFENSE...obviously, since I pulled some of my most popular instructors out of SG, I needed to rethink my flagship series a little. I think I have all the right pieces in place — I want to take you to new places other people are afraid to go! I'll post my final 2009 shows in a week or so.

And pause a moment for the late, great James Butler "Wild Bill" Hickok, who on this date in 1876 was shot dead by the cowardly Jack McCall as the famous gunfighter played poker at Nutal & Mann's saloon in Deadwood, Dakota Territory. Hickok, uncharacteristically sitting with his back to the door, was shot from behind; he was, of course, holding two pair, black aces and eights, known forever after as the "Dead Man's Hand."

My favorite book on Wild Bill is probably the least "historical document" of them all, Randy Lee Eickhoff's And Not To Yield: A Novel of the Life and Times of Wild Bill Hickok, which I think does an excellent job of capturing the zen of the gunfighter. Probably the best portrayal of Bill on film was on the first season of the series Deadwood, which captured his doomed grandeur. And even after years of revisionist history, I still think Wild Bill stands as the great tragic figure of the Old West, the best and the worst of gunfighter logic.


JR said...

My daughter lives with her husband and kids in Loveland. I can just imagine your land.

Anonymous said...

Congratulations on the 35 acres in some very beautiful country. Haven't been that way in a long time. I've always wanted some land out in the country where you could piss off the front porch and shoot off the back and instead of complaing, the neighbors would join you.

Overload in Colorado said...

I read an article that Ft Collins, right up the street from Loveland, has more restaurants per capita than any city in the country.

Overload in Colorado said...

Oh, I forgot to mention that there's a FREE Appleseed in Douglas, WY (near Casper) on Sept 6-7, and one the following weekend at Whittington (not free).

Anonymous said...

Off grid...Great!Now you must come to the fair. Next Home Power and Backwoods home. the mushroomajw

Bob said...

You might want to take a look a Backwoods Home Magazine forum.

nj_larry said...

Bless your heart for reducing your carbon footprint.

Chas S. Clifton said...

I've always wondered if the playing cards in the Deadwood museum are really the ones he was holding. ;-)

The whole story impressed me a lot when I was a child living in the Black Hills -- the not sitting with your back to the door thing.

kmitch200 said...

reducing your carbon footprint

Carbon Pseudo-Science foisted on the masses by Al FrankenGore.
Post hoc ergo propter hoc is NOT science.
B follows A, therefore A caused B.
What a crock!

Anonymous said...

Michael: Got a question for you, what was the FIFTH card in Hickcock's Aces and Eights hand of five cards?

All The Best,
Frank W. James

rastus said...

How far from the old abandoned ranger housing?

Anonymous said...

The 5th card in the hand is unknown, but speculation abounds...

Overload in Colorado said...

If you want an off grid fair closer to home, and next month:

On the grounds of New Belgium Brewery on Sept 20-21.

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