Ride For The Brand

                                                        Ride For the Brand 


                                                             Mike Capron 

Ridin’ for the Brand is never easy. Your word is your bond. You can’t quit until the works are done. You have to try to ride everything they lead out to you. Don’t turn loose until you have him flanked. Always respect your neighbors space.  Don’t question the boss. No complaining. Don’t leave a cow behind in the drive, don’t let them turn back. Don’t drop anything off on the drive. Work with the men next to you on the drive. Learn how to move a herd. Learn how to work a herd. Never let your horses butt see a cow. You start something, you finish it. One sour apple will sour the whole basket. 

I have told this story before, but it deserves telling again. The boss hired a young cowboy who was decked to the hilt. He had the fanciest outfit the boss had ever seen and the boss was so happy to see a young hand with  such a fine set up.  He just knew he had hired someone who could get it done. The first morning of the works he caught a big snorting roan horse and led him out to young “Fancy Dan”. Roany was sure plenty scary looking on the end of the bosses rope. His head was held real high and he was plowing rollers and whistle in the breeze. The boss led Roany right to to young Fancy, who was taking big steps backward. 

He said. “Ol Boss, I think I have made a mistake , don't let this outfit fool you, I just bought it in town the other day. I need a much gentler horse.”  

I never saw Fancy again, he left. 

He may have made a hand later, but I doubt it. Unless he figured out how to get his fiber toughened up.

Takes lots of fiber to make a cowhand, even if you follow all the rules.  I will take a crew with good attitude and fiber, before I will take the experienced and haughty.

A good boss will hire a crew that can do more than he can in the ability department, but he will lead them into battle.  Always difficult to take a bunch of tough cowpunchers and keep them lined out. They are like a pack of good dogs, takes lots of honest work and many miles to keep them straight. 

I have seen lots of good cowpunchers lately, they can ride and rope. You have to leave the pavement to find them, but they are out there, probably as many as ever. The ones I know are still as good and honest as ever. It is pure pleasure to be around them, they still “Ride for the Brand”. 

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