Wanted Poser

by Jonah


Katie is doing great. She’s a very good horse, and Stephanie sees a lot of potential in her. We went on a trailride yesterday. I was on Shelly, and my sister was on Katie (her real name is Pink Center. Dumb, huh?). It was a LOT of fun. It’s great to have two horses so we can ride together. Katie is taller than Shelly, but she has to jog to catch up. Shelly likes to walk in front.

Nathan and Stephanie went out on a ride today across the street in a square mile of woods laced with trails. They found a great place without any holes to run. At the dinner table Nathan showed off his calf which had all his hair on the inside pulled out. He says he’d rather shave than wear riding breeches, however.

Stephanie made cookies, and I made fudge, and we decorated our tree tonight. It’s kind of leaning forward. I think that’s because the weight of all the ornaments on the front pulling it down. Since Nathan was here, we talked about all the different special ornaments and where they came from. We also got to listen to Mom and Dad tell about some of their first Christmases together. Then we practiced singing Christmas carols in harmony. I’m just getting the alto part right. We talked Nathan into singing bass. Snicker.

One day last week, the Campus Activity Board sponsered a old time photographer to come in so students could get their pictures for free. I went over there in my free hour and stood in line for about the whole time. Finally, it was my turn. I already knew what I wanted to wear. I picked up a canvas colored, floor-length (on me, at least) duster from the rack of period clothes and put it on. Next, while the photographer was developing the pictures before mine, I went over to the prop table and tied a bandana around my neck. Then I selected a gun belt and slipped it around my waist. By this time the photographer had turned his attention to me. He rearrainged the bandana and then said he wanted to put the gun belt on the outside of the duster so that it would show up better in the picture. I would have none of it. That wouldn’t be authentic, I pointed out. They always wore gun belts INSIDE their coats, not outside. When he saw that I wouldn’t budge in my convictions, he let me keep it where it was and picked out a hat for me to wear, a big, brown ten gallon hat. He set it just so on my head. Then he gave me an old carbine to hold and slipped a bandoleer over my right shoulder which was facing the camera. No, I told him, they would have worn it over their left shoulders. Yes, he answered impatiently, but then no one would be able to see it in the picture. I gave in and left it there. Put your finger on the trigger and your thumb on the hammer, he instructed me. Then he had me tilt the gun till the breech glinted. Finally, he snapped a picture of me with a condescending, not-quite-smile on my face peering out from underneath my huge hat. He had me hold the pose for a second while he made sure the picture was okay, and I cocked the gun and pulled the trigger as I aimed out the window along the crooked with age sights. Then I undressed, collected my photograph, and hurried on to English class, glancing with satisfaction down at my picture every few steps.

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