Monday, 6 February 2012

When the Detroit Kid was known as "Rowdy Yates"

"Well, Mr. Faver, I guess you're right about that .   I fought the Yankees the best I could.  I've tried to give you and the Faver people good service.   But, I guess I've really stepped in it this time."
     "Everything you say is right, son.  You've done good by us.   But when you turn away from the idea that every man has to drive his own herd, plow his own furrow, or fight his own battle, you kinda drift away from the rest of the herd.
      "I know you want to help the folks in New Orleans.   But, Detroit isn't in New Orleans.   And stupid, pot-smoking, beer drinking union thugs aren't exactly the kind of people Hey Sus, and Wishbone, and the rest of the boys hope that their daughters bring home to meet their daddy.  Why would you film an ad in a dump that's the same bad as the dump you were pushing, anyway?   Would you film an ad for New Orleans in Detroit?   What in the hairy hopscotch were you thinking, Boy?"   Mr. Favor shook his head, holding his tin coffee cup twixt his calloused hands, all the while with holding fast to his fresh rolled cigarette twixt  the middle and index fingers in his inimitable, almost prayerful way.

       "I know Mr. Favor, but I was confusing America with labour unions.   I know that bailing out the companies by expropriation isn't exactly the law of the west, but...."
        The trail boss looked at Rowdy sharply.   Smoke from the mesquite-wood campfire streaked between them, as if representing the wall that had been built by the new events. "Son, you have to understand that you've broken the bond of the cowboy.   Right now back East, there's a man that is bound and determined to figure out how to make light come out of electricity.    I hear that there's a couple of boys who think they can make a bicycle fly.   The Favors back in Shafter, my people, have already lined up a telephone from the ranch all the way to Alpine and Marfa.   They say that in another year they're going to be able to talk to San Antonio and even New York City. And not a nickel's worth of government money's gone into it.   But there you are sayin' that it's okay for the government to tell the widders and orphans that their investment portfolio is just a bunch of fancy papers...changed in to nothin' in the stroke of a pen.   No preferred stocks, no bonds, only the unions stayed in.   They own the companies now, and they were the ones who caused the companies to go broke to start with.   This all just breaks my heart and burns my soul."   He paused for a drag on his cigarette, and then continued. 
File:Eric Fleming.jpg        "Rowdy, look here at Hey Sus, he's just a dumb Mexkin like us.   But he works on the drive over 18 hours a day.   He came with no English and now he talks better than most of the guys pokin' cows out there.   His kids are doin' great and his wife has that job back in Alpine that she's turned into a business.   And you take time out ramroddin' for us to push sales for a bunch of lazy slobs who want the government to pay them for smokin' dope and drinkin' beer while they assemble cars for more money in an hour than Hey Sus or you make in a day.   If you're goin' to push horseless carriages...then why not for the Toyota plant in San Antonio?  We buy Yankee things...what's wrong with buying Japanese things?...'specially when they're better and they're made in Texas....and the workers are free men....and wimmin....not union slugs.

      "Well, Mr. Faver, like I's best if I head on over the horizon.   Probably west, maybe way or the other.  Maybe..."

      "Now, Boy....don't go thinkin' that this is some kind of an exile.   Hell, son...we went through Chickamauga together and Shiloh, too.   You go and get your bats out of your belfry, or at least lined up where they're supposed to be.   Come around when we make it up to the railhead....we should make it there in a couple of months, with good weather.   Here's your pay....and it little based on your share.  Don't send me any messages from a jail somewhere. Keep your nose clean and we'll looking for you at the end of this road."

     And with that Rowdy mounted up and rode into the darkness.  Favor wasn't too worried about letting the boy move out in the dark.   A full moon, and a good familiarity with the route to Shawnee would get him to a decent stop by an hour after sunrise.   He could find a place with a tub and real soap and hot water and a decent shave....and maybe start teaching the bats where they were going to have to line up in the future.

El Gringo Viejo