Will Rogers is a low down, no good, back stabbin’
skunk in the grass! Those weren’t his rope tricks,
that was me! I taught that man everything he knew
about what rope is about and then some! Not only that,
he robbed me of some of my trademark statements.
Oh, he changed ‘em enough to fool people, but not me!
Boy oh boy, not me, I’m not one to forget a good turn
paid back with a dirty trick. Oh, everyone thinks he’s
some kind of American saint but I know better.
“A well applied rope can make people cry, but there’s
never been a rope invented that will tickle them.”
There, that’s one of them! He just mixed it up a little!
Well forget about that — like I have always said
too much time is spent living in the past, and yes
he stole that one from me too. So what. I guess
I had it coming. I was working carny at the time,
Will was riding in the Wild West show and I said,
“you need a livewire of a rope to really make your act,”
or something like that, and despite an initial reluctance
mainly concern for his pony trampling on me, my reply
being, “you should worry more about your horse.”
We clicked. I’ll admit he was a charmer, no denying
that, plus how many lariats got to work with a true half
Cherokee Indian? Yeah, it didn’t impress many agents either.
But I respected where Will came from; except him stealing
my act. In the end, I realized, the rope is either around his
neck, or it’s yours. I had to cut loose. So I did. I never thought
about cartoons before. Everything Will and I did was live.
The man was funny, I have to admit. Once I said to him,
you know why the sky’s blue? and without missing a beat
he replied, because it would look foolish any other way.
We riffed off each other. That’s what I missed in ‘toons.
Everything was scripted. There was no element of surprise.
I wanted four sheets to the wind. I wish I had shut up
but I was so damn excited to work solo. I had to tell
everyone, I worked with Will Rogers. What can I say?
The young characters, they’d never heard of Will, and I was
What? Still, I landed jobs. A magic rope for Aladdin. A daring
escape. There was always cowboy work. All the big guys
loved to dress up as tough guy rough riders. Well, to do that,
you gotta twirl rope. Where you gonna get that? I’m still the
go to guy. I was auditioned recently for another live film.
Some cop needs to jump out a window holding on to a rope
so he can swing in some other window. Piece of cake for me.
Film’s called Die Hard. We’ll see if I make it past editing.
But it’s a good title for me. Fits my lifestyle.
<Larry Lariat portrait copyright Curtis Walker. You can find more about Curtis at http://www.blunderspublik.com/. Thank you Curtis! wm>