• Fri, Feb 3 2012

What I Learned About Life And Love From A Few Inhabitants Of The Wild West

The Bull Rider: By the time we reached our final destination of Missoula, it’s safe to say that my mind had already been blown. So once we finished watching the rodeo we were there to see, then happened upon some bull riders and agreed to accompany them to a bar, I wasn’t particularly moved by the strangeness of the situation.

What I was moved by was what we would find out about these two men.

One had a name I’ll admit I can’t recall, which is odd because he was the same one I talked to most of the night. It probably was overshadowed by his friend’s name, which happened to be Lim. Lim and my new bull rider buddy made the rodeo rounds together; they traveled and sat on bulls and tried not to get thrown off. My friend was 33 but looked 43. He and Lim, he said, had known each other since they were kids.

After a few beers, he opened up. He had some trouble with his wife. He was trying to forgive her.

“Forgive her for what?”

“For sleeping with Lim.”

There it was.

“He’s still your best friend?”

“Yes. I’m learning to forgive him, too.”

From there on out, the trip was kind of literally downhill, except that it was just down. We drove back through Wyoming to Colorado, where I caught a flight back to L.A. I haven’t been back since, but then again, I’m not sure that I ever completely left.

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  • Nashvillian

    So. You’ve learned that Middle American is full of normal people (or, wait…are they saintly?) and we have things to do. And when people make fun of us, we reclaim it, just like people have been doing for hundreds of years.

    I’m torn between appreciating the article for pointing out that people everywhere are individuals and you can’t stereotype a hung swath of the country and not have your “mind blown”…and being really, ridiculously annoyed that you thought this was such a revelation it merited publishing.

    • South Dakotan

      uh yeah…i agree with nashvillian. no, i’m certain. i’m definitely annoyed.

  • Katie

    I think it probably wouldn’t annoy me so much if it were better written and had a point. But it isn’t, and it doesn’t, so it just seems like she thought her trip was like going to the zoo or something.