The Michigan Daily - Friday, January 8, 1993 - Page 5
A ULD LA NG SY NE M E ETS T H E
We sat on the bales of hay surrounding the As I surveyed GUI- group, though, I
dance floor, plastic cups of champagne poised lieved to see that I was not the only one
and ready. a little out-of-place. With the exceptio
Three ... two ... one ... 1-appy Ncw Year. brother, my hunily seemed to be a bit unc
We tossed streamers, confetti and ten-gallon able. And even the Winkehnans (real
hats into the air to welcome 1993. who we met at the New Year's Eve ho
The band began playing "Achy Breaky I eart" seemed a bit shaky in their saddles.
and we kicked up our boot-clad heels one last Thc flying L gives scores of city si
time before sitting down to our New Year's feast taste of real ranch life every week. Guest
-black-eyed pas and cornbread. cottages fully equipped with roaring fir
Not exactly my typical New Year's Eve.T'lhen eat hearty meals from a buffet in a lodge
again, the Flying L Guest Ranch in Bandera, with mooseheads and drink Lone Star
Texas, was not exactly what I had in mind when locally-brewed libation) in the Brandi
my dad told me we were taking a famiil y vacation Saloon. Nightly entertainment includ
over winter break. Bandera, the self-proclaimed alongs with Cowboy Hoot and demonstr
"Cowboy Capital otthe World," isn't where most oun and rope tricks by Cowboy Hage
Ohio families hang out in their sparc time. I began addition to the aibrementioned hoe-dowii
to realize how inaccurately my hometown - they are not out on the trail, guests can p
Wyoming, Ohio - is named. The Cincinnati tennis and browse in the general store (r
suburb is far from the Wild West. shop).
But back to the peas. When I politely refused As we rode off into the sunrise, I bega
a steaming plate of this Texan delicacy, a man that my luck was turning around. The
sitting at the end of the long wooden table told mec was gorgeous. H illtops seemed to floa
the history behind the dish. early morning tog. A Tlexas-sized creek(
"You have to eat black-eyed peas on New river by Ohio standarmds) babbled along
Year's Eve. They bring you luck for the coming trail.Dleer frolicked amnong the low-hangi
year," he explained. I managed to keep Psycho at a coin orta
But, try as I might, I could only manage to eat - not lagging~ behind the others, but not
one black-eyed pea. I went to bed with an un- ing" either.
settled sense of foreboding about the outcome of Things went pretty smoothly until
my 1993. down through a small ravine. But this t
My prophesy seemed to be coining true as we brother, the urban cowboy himself, had
rode the haywagon to the stable for our morning problem.
ride the next day. Beftire we were out of sight of As we bumped up the trail. I heard I
the lodge, the wind had penetrated the four layers "I .adies and gentlemen, that really hurt.
of clothing I was wearing, and my hands were A lfew short steps later, he continued,
turning strange colors (I naively neglected to and gent lemnen, I won't be having any cI
- bring gloves on my vacation to "sunny South We returned to the lodge refreshe
Texas") blown and slightly bow-leo ged.
- fl When we arrived at the stable, Cowboy Bob, By the time dinner rolled around, I
the head wrangler, assigned each member of our hungry I could have eaten a horse - bu
group to a strapping stallion. An inexperienced trusty companion Psycho, of course.
rider, I cautiously mounted my horse. Bob came When we filed into the buffet area
r V around to adjust the stirrups to my legs, which are pleased to see a vat full of flavorful bla4
short even by Ohio standards. And everything is peas. Yet again, I passed up an oppolr
bigger in Texas, you know. guarantee myself a lucky year.
to i"What's his name, Bob?" I asked, petting the I lowever, I did expand my culinary h
Photos i top rgl, horse on his neck. at the Flying L. I sampled such dow
1.Urbancowoy Brin Peerle"Psycho," he said, without even looking up. favorites as barbecued brisket, biscuits
best Marlboyo man pose, minus the "Psycho? I can't ride a horse named Psycho. sage, gravy and mashed potatoes.
cigarette. To be perfectly honest, I can't ride a horse. Don't During my adventures in the.chow li
2.eisartands you have a Buttercup or aTenderfoot I could take my first exposure to chicken-fried steak
2. Melissa stands in front of the Flying L out instead?" breaded and deep-fried to resemble ch
Guest Ranch with wranglers Bob and By this time, Bob had moved on to help my could feel my coronary arteries harden
Curly, brother, and I was left wondering what sort. of each cholesterol-laden bite. But it taste
3. Cowboy Hagen demonstrates proper equestrian Norman Bates I was sitting on. I After dinner, my family piled into o
lasso technique. swallowedmy fearandtried toget accustomed to cars (outofplace among Bandera'smany
4. This sign beckons buckaroos from being 10 feet off the ground. trucks) and drove to downtown Bandera
across the country to Texas' oldest "I'll show this horse who's in charge of this theevening at Arkey Blue'sSilverDollar
'honky-tonk.' situation - me," I thought as we began our the oldest honky-tonk in Texas.
excursion. However, my confidence wasquickly As we descended the steps to the
PHOTOS AND STORY BY dashed when Bob rode next to me with a friendly basement establishment, I was shocked
MELISSA PEERLESS warning. numnberof patrons wearing cowboy hats.
"Don't pull back on the reins too hard or he then, the only cowboys I had ever seen
..1 . ..W ..A-.1 ~ .nf A .ay nni.ns- h 2,niti anrn-d ifft rind t wemre Woinm romav- the nickmarr
WILD, WILD WEST
m of my
Is stay in
n - in
an to feel
.t on the
t not my
, I was
ne, I had
to see a
n il bars
ine of nv
We stationed ourselves at a long table right
next to the band. We sipped Lone Stars and
enjoyed such tunes as "Two of a Kind Working
on a Full 'House," "I've Got Friends in Low
Places" and "Here's a Quarter. Call Someone
After a couple brews, I set out with my cousin
to find the cowgirls' room. The male door atten-
dant let us into the graffiti-covered facilities.
When we questioned the amount of privacy of-
fered by the sheets of burlap serving as stall doors,
a woman told us not to worry.
"You're lucky. This is the first new burlap
they've gotten in 25 years. The old stuff was full
of holes," she said.W
We signed the walls and left to explore the rest
of the saloon.
The walls were adorned with mooseheads
(decked out with blinking lights for the holiday
season), velvet Elvises and a collection of vanity
license plates from all 50 states. The mantle was
home to a shrine to bandleader and bar-owner
Arkey Blue - an 8 x 10 glossy of Arkey flanked
by antlers and flickering candles. A Dolly Parton
pinball machine clanged and blinked in the cor-
My cousin and I moseyed on over to the bar
where three locals were carrying on a Texas-
"That Ed, I can't believe he forgot about his
date with Mary Lou," one cowboy said. "He must
be one brick shy of a full load."
"Ain't that the truth," the other one replied.
"le's barking up the wrong tree if he thinks she'll
lbrgive him for this one. She was as mad as a wet
"Now he's gone and done it," the third said.
"I saw Mary Lou last night. She was all
gussied up. She looked nice, but, bless her heart,
she was crying in her beer," the firstone said. "So
I asked her to dance to some belt buckle polishing
music - you dance so close you polish each
other's belt buckles."
We walked back to the table a bit confused.
"That sure was a sorry lot of guys," my cousin
As we were preparing to leave, Arkey an-
nounced that the saloon was selling souvenir ''-
shirts after the band finished its show. He said
they had smalls, mediums, larges, extra larges.
and extra-extra larges for the men -and that the
women's shirts were sold by bra sizes.
"We have 32s, 34s, 36s, and a box of 'hubba-
hubbas' and 'ooh, hot damns,"'Arkey announced.
I'll have to look for those sizes the next time
I'm at The Cap.
Apparently unable to think of an occasion
when he would wear a Silver Dollar Saloon T-
shirt, my dad opted for a compact disc of Arkey
Blue and the Blue Cowboys' Greatest Hits.
Now, through the miracle of CDs, we could
take Arkey Blue with us back to Ohio, probably
Arkey's first trip to the Buckeye State. I realized
that something more than miles separates the two
It's one week into 1993, and I
still haven't made a New Year's
resolution. In the past, I might
have felt guilty for this
transgression. But this year, I
While I was growing up,
New Year's Eve and New
were big Josh
my house. Dubow
watch movies, make hot dogs
and marshmallows in the
fireplace and when midnight
came, make a resolution.
We'd go around the room
and everybody would say
something like, "I'm gonna lose
10 pounds this year," or "I'm
gonna get better grades this
year," or "I'm gonna exercise
and get in shape this year." But
almost always, everybody's
resolution had to do only with
I never really knew what to
say, so I usually went with the
grades or if I was feeling
adventurous, resolve to keep my
room neat - something which I
assuredly would break by Martin
Luther King Day.
Now, my family doesn't
gather around the fireplace on
New Year's Eve. Most of us kids
go our separate ways to one
party or another to ring in the
New Year with our friends. And
I have stopped making New
But after talking to many
people about their New Year's
resolutions, I found out that I'm
not in the minority. Most
people's response when I asked
them if they mahe a resolution
was either, I forgot, I don't do
that stuff, or, I don't remember.
The people who did make
resolutions mostly made the
same ones my family did years
ago. Lose weight, get in shape
and get better grades.
If everybody held to their
resolutions, we could replace all
of Ann Arbor's junk food spots
with CCRBs and libraries. But I
don't think we need to jump the
gun, because most of these
people won't keep their
It will only take a couple of
weeks for someone to go to
Stucchi's instead of the CCRB.
Or go out to a party one
Thursday night and sleep
through their Friday classes.
.TChis is why I have become
disenchanted with New Year's
resolutions. People rarely keep
them and when they do, they
only affect themselves.
It is time people made more
meaningful resolutions that gave
a more widespread reward than
the monotonous individual
resolutions like losing weight or
doing better in school.
If for one year, everybody
resolved to treat each other with
respect and dignity, it could have
a mieaningful effect on society.
Looking back at 1992, there
were a multitude of examples of
individuals or groups of people
failing to treat each other with
Whether it be the ethnic
cleansing in the former
Yugoslovia, the riots in Los
Angeles, or the everyday
discrimination which pervades
this country, people donot treat
each other with-dignity.
If people cared more about
others, would individuals have to
go to bed hungry and homeless?
Would thousands of people be
starving in Somalia?
Granted, a resolution to treat
other people with respect doesn't
sound as glunorous as saying,
T'm onnna et a four noint, or.