JoshuasTravels — I wanna be a cowboy, baby

I wanna be a cowboy, baby

Written by . Posted at 7:38 pm on June 22nd, 2008

When John Wayne needed help, he called in the Cavalry – meaning the horsetop elites. “Elite” because it’s Pretty Damn Tough to fight effectively on thousand-pound steeds. But, if used properly, Equidaes allow a unit to outflank, out-surprise and overpower (fighting on Mustangs gives greater height, speed, and inertial mass than the unfortunate rest of the Army). And, because of these unique abilities, the Cav is often given long-range missions with little oversight. Things like scouting, screening, raiding, and skirmishing are the traditional roles.

Anyway, the Cav’s been around for a long, long time – although it didn’t really come into it’s own until the invention and adoption of the stirrup around the 7th century. And all that history breeds tradition. And a big, big part of that tradition is Earning Your Spurs. In the modern US Cavalry, you go on a Spur Ride about six months after you hit your first Cav unit.

It differs from post to post, but this time around I was required to (among other things) memorize and recite Fiddler’s Green, conduct a dismounted patrol, evaluate and treat a casualty, prepare a SINCGARS radio for transmission, maintain and load and clear a number of crew-served weapons, set up and use a Traffic Control Point, react to indirect fire, and knock out a 30-hour set of continuous high-tempo operations in a mock Iraqi-village. You know, the standard.

And now, on the last duty day of the week, and at all gatherings of True Cavalrymen, you’ll see me wearing a Stetson and Spurs, just like The Almighty:


And that about sums up my recent Armying. Two more Lieutenants hit my unit, which is always bueno. If the Army isn’t keeping us busy on the weekends, we usually do a pretty good job of it ourselves.

There’s always something new to do down here in The City At The End Of America, but me and the Hillbilly still try to jet town once a month. The last big trip was to Del Rio, which is about halfway down the Mex-Tex border. If you’re ever in the area, I recommend it. It’s a neat place with a lot of character.

And now, without further ramblings, a twenty-odd photo extravaganza:

Kel, SPF gazillion, Guadalupe National Forest

fact: real cowboys drink Dasani

like Meat Loaf says, two out of six ain’t bad

A peso to the first cowpoke that tells me which Garth album this is

Counting my dolla dolla bills in Del Rio

this girl is hopeless

the Batmobile can’t red-line a thing without a little go-juice

despite the rumors, Texas ain’t all bad


these are the types of things you don’t expect to see between Marathon and Valentine

the world’s loneliest Prada store

Q: what’s the most dangerous thing in the US Army?
A: a Lieutenant with a compass and a radio
(here’s 8 of them)

buenas noches

twice a day, everyday

we couldn’t find a good Italian place, or even a mediocre one, so we ate at The Olive Garden

this is Chester Lampkin, the AM Weatherman for the best newstation in El Paso

At the Gordita Festival. They were selling Super Corn, but I just wanted a Snow Cone

Okay, they were both pretty good
Ask her about that shirt. Then ask her what happened to mine. Go on, ask her.

First. Live. Local.

my platoon, halfways through some training

at Sorrento’s, the best Italian this side of the Grande


  1. Pamela Fenton

    The Fiddler’s Green poem is sad!
    I like the pictures.
    Are you in the platoon picture?
    Why do you look cranky eating the snow cone?
    I didn’t know the Batmobile went on gravel :)
    No guess for me on the Garth album….when will you post the answer?

  2. 1) I wouldn’t say it’s sad, I think there’s more of an accepting sort of agnosticism to the poem

    2) I took the PLT picture – but we all look about the same in all the Rattle anyway

    3) Kelly, probably

    4) it’s no Tumbler, but it gets the job done

    5) after a few more guesses, I suppose

  3. BriFent

    Congrats on earning the spurs!
    Hope to see you later this summer – you going to the July wedding?

  4. Sevens?

  5. @ Dad
    Good guess; I hadn’t thought of Sevens.
    It’s No Fences, actually. It’s a little more obvious before my crop-job – siento.

    @ BriFent
    Danke. And if you need a Leader Of Scouts in July, I’ll be a mile high.

  6. Grpa and Grma A

    We’re just as proud of the spurs as you must rightfully be. When do we get to see a picture of you wearing them? Grpa wants to know a little more about the history and what you had to do to get them. He is always a pain when it comes to history. The pictures are always enjoyable and your trips seems exciting. Love

  7. 1. LOVE the prada marfa store pic! thanks for posting the link, it was so interesting to read about!

    2. LOVE your texas flag polo.. i laughed when i saw you wearing and said.. jfen would be one to wear that

    3. Batmobile is lookin gooood, can’t wait to take a ride in it sometime!

    4. Funny you went to visit Del Rio.. that’s where my brother’s home base will be while he’s in flight school for the air force for the next three years! So that just means i’ll be down in texas even more, which means more chances for me, you and kelly to meet up hopefully!

    5. miss you like hellll… i’m in france studying this summer and there’s some kids here that go to Colorado State and thanks to you, I was able to intelligently converse about the New Belgium Brewery with them 😉

    hope life is goooooood!

  8. PStrauss

    The lone female lieutenant looks kind of left out. :(

  9. @ LK:
    if you keep reading the posts, I’ll keep posting the posts. I miss you right back, and enjoy Bastille Day, you lucky expat

    @ PS:
    K-star was taking the picture, but that still leaves a 7:2 ratio, which is unacceptable. The things I do for my country….

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