Tag Archives: Colorado

The Whiskey Chronicals

Leave the bottle

Leave the bottle

If you watch any good western, a bottle of Whiskey is part of the plot.  “Leave the bottle” is akin to “you know…it’s been a really, really bad day”.

Now, often in a good western, there’s a complete idiot who thinks “Leave the bottle” means, “Hey, come over to me and say something stupid”.

Buffalo Bill and I had that kind of day Last Saturday in Golden, Colorado. After being in the portrayal competition all day (which is very stressful) we decided to visit a saloon that we had never been to and drink a few beers.   Now, keep in mind we stay dressed in older fashioned cowboy clothes.  We both have large mustaches, like the old west.  We both have big knives hanging from our belts, like the old west.  We both just wanted them to “leave the bottle”, just like the old west.

Will and I chose a booth and started to talk.  A woman at the bar turned around and just stared.  Not the polite “quick-glance”, or even the slightly longer “turn the circle so it looks like you aren’t looking”.  Nope, this was a 2 minute “what the hell” stare.  Will looked at me and glanced his eyes towards her and back at me.

“She’s staring” he said.

“Well, you are pretty ugly” I said.

He then scrunched up his face and stared back at her. She turns quickly back. We laugh.

The next few minutes are sort of a blur. But soon she is at the end of our table, bent down and staring at him, almost face to face. But no words. Nothing. Will has sent his signal “Hey, come over to me and say something stupid”.  She didn’t disappoint.

“You freak me out”.

Always a strong pick-up line.

“You look like someone very special to me”

Better.

“He’s dead. I think you are his ghost”

Uh-oh.

I come in to diffuse the situation. “You are pretty old Will, maybe you are dead” I smile to him as I say it.

If looks could kill, I would be dead myself.

She finally left, and sat back down after some tense minutes.  A few minutes later, a drunk walks by the booth , does a Charlie Chaplin put-on-the-brakes and backs-up.  “Whoa. You guys from the hills?”

“Yep, been panning all day, only found one nugget” Buffalo Bill doesn’t even look up as he mutters it.

The drunk does a long stare.  Head darts back-and-forth between both of us. He Shrugs and walks away. We both left the bar before anyone else blew smoke up our dusters. “Just leave the Bottle”.

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The Great Denver Blizzard Adventure!

Like the Buckhorn, animal mounts including a polar bear, Elephant and Giraffe!

Like the Buckhorn, animal mounts including a polar bear, Elephant and Giraffe!

Best darn hat geek in the world

Best darn hat geek in the world

The Buffalo Bill Birthday bash was a success, with Tom securing 2nd place as the national Buffalo Bill and me retaining my first place position as Theodore Roosevelt. A Little extra cash now in our pockets, we were preparing to go the Lookout Mountain, the burial-place of Buffalo Bill and the final day of public appearances before we started the long drive home.

Our favorite Waitress !

Our favorite Waitress !

Buffalo Bill woke up before I did and all I heard was “Oh oh”

Years of experience has taught me that those two words together are never good, and this time it was no exception.  Over night the town of Golden was blanketed with 8 inches of snow, and more was on its way.  ” I think we should start heading back”. The great scout had spoken and I knew he was right.  We finished our breakfast at Pansy’s Parlor (We stay in the two bed Buffalo Bill room) said goodbye to John and Judy our wonderful hosts and start down the hill towards Denver.  The little car fights snow drifts and slippery hills to make it to the highway and we slowly crawl out-of-town at 20 MPH.  The cars going the opposite way – uphill – are at a dead stop on the freeway, unable to climb the grade. “At 40 MPH , we can make 400 miles in 10 hours” Bill States.

I was fortunate to have won a custom-made hat as part of my prizes, and we were off to see the Hat Lady. Last year, Tom won and I have coveted his hat since I first laid eyes on it. All natural beaver without added color and custom formed to his head. It is flawless. Now, I would have a chance to have a hat made as well. We snuck the back way to the shop, (almost getting broadsided by a car that slid through a red light) and made our way in. Coleen the hat maker is awesome and she knows hats. I decided I wanted to recreate Roosevelt’s hat seen in the photos of him with John Muir, and she went to work, measuring, adjusting, telling me that the hat was pretty unique and that she might be off 1/4 of an inch. That’s perfection, when your hat lady thinks that everyone will notice 1/4 inch! We hug goodbye and shovel out the car.

Back into the blizzard, we start to call home for computer modeling of our intended track. “Watch out at….blah, blah, blah.”. We will see weather almost the entire way. We stop along the way for gas and people just stare at us, unbelieving anyone would be so stupid as to drive. We agree, but really want to get home.

Within a few hours the weather was lightened and we are able to stop for dinner in Paxton, Nebraska and see Sam, our favorite waitress, at Ole’s Cafe. Ole’s is a lot like the Buckhorn Exchange (see previous post), only it’s liquor license number 1 in Nebraska. Sam filled us in on whats happened since last year “not much, except my grandson blew up his car with a cell phone”

“What?????”

I always thought is was a rumor that a cell phone could ignite gas fumes. Nope folks, its true. Thankfully just a small burn but a totalled car! No more cell phone answering when near gas for this guy.

After dinner, Bill and I decide that we have had enough adventure, and poin the stagecoach towards home. Driving through the night, we reach the promise land at 3:30 am and say “Adios Partner”.

The Buckhorn

The Buckhorn Exchange, Denver Colorado

The Buckhorn Exchange, Denver Colorado

In the city of Denver sits a saloon built in 1893.  It wasn’t the first bar in Colorado but it does hold the distinction of having liquor license number 1, and has continuously operated since it opened.  What’s more significant for us is that both Buffalo Bill and Theodore Roosevelt frequented the place.

Because of its history, (and awesome food) we always stop by for a drink or dinner when we come to Denver and always dress old west. So many tourists come to the Buckhorn, that we are having our photos taken with people constantly, and yesterday was no exception. A lovely lady with a great southern accent asked if she could have her picture taken with us. In talking, we learned she was an opera singer turned lawyer. I think one of the greatest joys of doing what we do is meeting such interesting people. People interested in history (and theater) are a diverse bunch, and it’s a glue that connects us all together in a way that is fun and peace-loving. No political agenda, no religious bias. Just interest in the past.

Buffalo Bill at the Buckhorn

Buffalo Bill at the Buckhorn

FREE BEER THURSDAY

Buffalo Bill and I arrived in Golden Colorado finally after many hours of white knuckle driving. We checked into our accommodations. We then walked to the Coor’s

Buffalo Bill enjoys a free Coors

Buffalo Bill enjoys a free Coors

Brewery for the tour and – count them –  not one, not two but three free beers! I know it surprising, but Buffalo Bill was known for his drinking skills. And the modern-day version LOVES free beer, as do I. Actually, who doesn’t?

Temperance ladies Be damned!

We are now tempted to do a little research on the connection between Adolph Coors and Buffalo Bill. They were in the same time period and certainly would have run in the same circles. Buffalo Bill spent time in Golden and it makes sense that the two would have been friends. So, we now have a new reason to visit the brewery. Isn’t history cool?

Cheers!