Rodeo Fever

Starting around 1959 my younger brothers and myself started coming down with a case of Rodeo Fever. Didn’t dare mention the word rodeo or stampede in our house. My brothers Pete and Paul snuck off for a day and entered the Onion Lake Stampede some 25 miles away. They planned on changing their names, however the announcer knew them. The plan sort of backfired and one of them got stuck with the name Bob anyway. A few days later Dad and Paul went to a Paradise Hill grocery store to do some shopping. The storeowner who had been at the rodeo quizzed Paul on his bronc riding. Dad pretended not to hear. A long silent ride in the truck on the way home, then dad turned to Paul and said, “Did you win any prizes at the Stampede?”then Paul“No”. That was the one and only conversation on the subject. My brothers did very well for first timers. I encouraged Pete to enter the Meadow Lake Stampede,but he said, “I’m kind of scared to.” I assured him that the horses at Meadow Lake were no worse then the ones at Onion Lake. “Oh, I’m not scared of those horses,” says Pete, “It’s the crowds of people that scare me.” A few years later Paul rode a few bulls and broncs for a while. In 1960 I entered my first rodeo, landing real good on my head. It gave me a little food for thought for a while. A year later I drove 150 miles to enter the calf-roping event at another rodeo.First day: missed my calf and then spent the rest of the day standing around and thinking of a hundred thinks I should or could be doing back home. Second day: rained out, and spent the day staring out of a hotel window.Rodeo dance:Me not knowing anyone and being a little shy, sitting alone at a table most of the night. Then when I asked this girl for a dance,she turned me down. Next morning on my way home, vehicle trouble. I took all this as a sign from the mighty Myatook, to immediately terminate my short rodeo career.