by Gracie C. McKeever (c) 2007
First of all, what’s there not to like in a cowboy? Return with me now to those thrilling days of yesteryear when men were men and cowboys were, well, just a stronger and sexier breed of men altogether.
Name a memorable cowboy from history, both true and fiction—Alan Ladd in Shane, Gary Cooper in The Virginian and High Noon, Clayton Moore in The Lone Ranger, Clint Eastwood in Hang ‘Em High, Wyatt Earp of OK Corral fame, Bat Masterson and Pat Garrett, just to name a few—and you have an honest man who stands up for justice and the truth, sacrifices for and supports those he loves, and defends the weak, small and young. Wow, almost sounds like superhero material to me!
Put simply, cowboys are the very embodiment of the ideal man in every way. From their connection to the land and ability to survive amidst harsh rugged country and the danger of the “wild west,” to their independent, pioneering spirit, to their old fashioned values, not to mention the way they fill out a pair of wranglers and chaps or graciously tip their Stetson to a passing lady, cowboys have been making women’s hearts go pitter patter with their courage and chivalry and other lesser men’s eyes green with envy.
Maybe it’s the sense of untamed masculinity about a cowboy, the wounded, lone warrior beneath the strong and silent, road-weary exterior that makes us want to take him to our bosom and make everything all right. Or maybe it’s the raw sexiness of a cowboy sitting tall in the saddle that spurs our feminine hormones into overdrive and estrous sighs floating from our vocal cords. Or maybe, finally, it’s that steadfast code of ethics by which a cowboy lives and breathes that makes him among a dying breed we all aspire to.
Whatever it is that makes little girls want to be rescued by them and little boys want to grow up to be like them, bottle him for me or even strap a saddle on him… and ride ‘em, cowboy!
(Editorial Note: I'm sending out a big thanks to Mark Lichterman for pointing out my misprint. The error in the article has been corrected to include Gary Cooper instead of Cary Grant as previously written. Yikes!).