Alright Already… More On Cowboy Josh… And Whoever Those Other People Were…

April 24th, 2009

My sister really nailed the descriptions of everyone we met, so I feel kind of repetitive saying anything else. But what the heck… I’ll give it a go.

Marlboro Man – Exudes a quiet confidence.  Laughs easily.  Makes bacon.  Does the dishes.  I was really amazed at the amount of time he spent with us. Why? Why? WHY?  I kept asking myself over and over. Why is he hanging out with us? Surely he has a cow to inviscerate or a horse to excavate or a pasture to fumigate.  I mean he was really there, you know what I mean?  He was in the moment.  He was friendly and open and not afraid to boss people around if we looked lost and helpless… which we did most of the time.

He answered all of April’s nine thousand questions without flinching.  He spoke of his kids with pride.  He told us about some of the projects they are working on.  He laughed at my ascerbic comments.  Yeah… I made Marlboro man laugh, but like I said… he laughs easily... not loudly like April and I do.  He doesn’t bray like a donkey like my sister and I.  It is more of a heh, heh, heh. In fact, it’s not really a very impressive laugh at all.  It doesn’t even make your ears ring. I bet he never even got a stomach ache from laughing… or cracked a rib… or gave the person sitting next to him a brain aneurysm. Still, it is a laugh and it came to him easily.  I really liked Ladd.  He was my favorite.

Pie Near Woman – Now Ree is harder to describe than MM is. She is more complicated. Typical of a woman to be more complicated isn’t it?  She is a writer and a photographer and a cook and a homeschooler.  These are her passions.  These are the things that make her tick.  If I had not been there, I am sure that my sister, Jenni, and Ree would have talked homeschooling the entire weekend.  Sadly, I was there and that made everyone a little nervous about exclaiming over the virtue of homeschooling your kids versus taking advantage of that little brick building in the center of town that educates your kids FOR YOU!  This resulted in me asking myself… why?  Why???  WHY am I here?  What am I doing here?  How did I get here?  What is going on?

It was kind of a surreal situation. In some ways, I was lucky, as I actually knew half of the party there (my sister and Clay). For Ree, Ladd, Jenni and Dan, everyone at the lodge was a complete stranger.  Of course, us girls had blogging in common. Lord knows, we could talk blogging. We all had children, so we could talk about our kids. The ranch is an interesting place, so Ladd patiently answered all of our questions about his job, but ultimately, Ree was our hostess and she had six people to take care of that she did not really know from Adam and Eve. PLUS – (with the exception of April) we are all kind of quiet people.

I have always been amazed at people who can swing their jaws open and closed, ninety miles an hour, talking about whatever pops into their heads. All of my closest friends tend to be ‘talkers’ and I tend to be the ‘non-talker’.  I can’t really call myself ‘the listener’ as I am usually flying off into the milky way on a unicorn, while they are blabbering on and on and on and on.  For the sake of friendship, I have learned to grunt and nod my head at the right time and to discern the exact right moment to exclaim,”Hey! Let’s go get a latte!”

What’s weird is that the Country Doctor is also a non-talker. He may talk slightly more than I do, but only because he asks so many questions!  In our house, our youngest son, Jack does all the talking.  The rest of us exist in a shroud of delicious silence.

So Ree’s job was kind of hard.  She had to draw out five non-talkers and try to distract April long enough to let someone else have a say.  I occasionally heard her saying, ”April… April… look… outside… about a half mile down the road… there is a chicken!  Why don’t you go catch it and bring it back and then you can tell us all about it!”

Or maybe that was me that was saying that…


Here is the run down on the talking versus non-talking of the other people that were there.

Jenni – non-talker and when she does talk, she whispers.

Dan – non-talker who occasionally tells a good story in hushed tones.

Clay – expresses himself primarily through the art of ball room dance.

April – TALKER!  Thank God!  Someone had to do the talking at this shindig.

The Country Doctor – non-talker except when asking questions of his wife.

Me – hostile non-talker… because of all those years of questions…

Ladd – non-talker that was forced to talk to answer all of April’s questions. He actually talked so much, his voice grew hoarse. 

Ree – Talker… but the question is… is she really a talker? Or was she forced to talk because of the circumstances? She didn’t talk the way a real talker talks. You know… the whole whatever pops into my head I say out loud to whoever is within hearing distance … and whatever I just said will lead me to say something else… and that will make me think of something else… which I will have to tell you… which will remind me of this one time…. and then we went to…. and that’s where I met… because she is related to…. who has a gimpy leg…. heart condition… psoriasis…. crick neck… rodeo clown… died in a bull fight… orphaned in Pakistan… leeches… tractor accident… knee replacement surgery… puppet show… head lice…

She wasn’t one of those kind of talkers, but she did talk.  She attempted to cook and talk at the same time which was difficult for her.  She kept losing count of how many cups of flour she had put into the cinnamon roll dough.  She couldn’t remember whether or not she had added the salt, the baking soda, the eggs.  April and Jenni began keeping track of what she had added to her recipes, so that when she got lost, they could tell her exactly where she was.  It made me wonder what would happen if she ever tried to do any cooking videos on her blog?  She might have to film herself cooking in silence and then have someone at Pixar animate her lips to move in sync with her overdubs.  Sounds like a lot of work to me!  I was completely unable to help Ree keep track of her cups of flour as I was too busy nodding towards the talkers, and grunting at appropriate intervals, while mentally practicing modern dance steps across the patterns of light on the floor of the lodge.

Sometimes being a non-talker is physically exhausting.

Especially if you are a non-talker that is forced to make other non-talkers talk.  

It is almost like performing a one-woman puppet show… except that there are eight puppets and you have to make them all talk at the same time.  Trust me, as the world’s most reluctant puppeteer, I can tell you that this is virtually impossible.  

Unless you know how to use photoshop.  

I really don’t know where Ree falls along the spectrum of talking and non-talking.  All I know is that she struggles with cooking and talking at the same time.  

And since she loves to cook… she must not talk that much.

Oh… and Ree was my favorite.


Cowboy Josh  - Tall, lanky, perpetual smile, his eyes sparkle with laughter, walks like someone who spends most of their time on a horse.  He glows… he radiates a sort of joie de vivre.  What can I say?  I only spent a few hours with him and I fell hopelessly in love.  Please don’t tell the Country Doctor!

Cowboy Josh was my favorite.


  • Okay…how many words were in that post?

    I think it is fascinating that people who can’t talk to each other in person can be prolific bloggers! I had just been pondering this (prolific bloggers) last night when I was looking at how much you have archived here. How many millions of words are archived here? How much virtual “talking” have you done and continue to do? But you struggle to carry on an in-person conversation? Hhmmm…. Interesting…..
    Some psych major please ‘splain that.

    And didn’t hanging out with those homeschoolers help you to see the light about how WONDERFUL homeschooling types really are? Huh?? Yea. You know they did.

  • All I know is that since I started writing a blog, I am a happier person. I finally found a way to talk!

  • arlene:

    Oh girl, I understand completely what you are saying. I too am a non-talker (introvert) and I’m married to the exact opposite. It is soooo much easier to write words because then I can edit and get the words to say what I really mean. ‘Cause I also have the disability of having the wrong words come tripping off my tongue without my knowledge. I can be saying something and realize that the other person is looking at me with a strange expression. Then I stop and have to ask, “Ok, what did I just say?” That is one of the reasons I mostly stay quiet in a group. Safer that way.

    It sounds like you had a fabulous time on the ranch. thanks so much for sharing. Oh, I found you through The Pioneer Woman…whom I found about 2 months ago. I’m a late-comer to the blog world. Everyone will have moved on to tweeter-city or whatever is next, and I’ll be left behind in blogdom.

  • Arlene – I will stay with you in blogdom. It is my favorite place and I don’t even mind if I end up being here alone.

  • My impression always has been that you were a talker, and April was a talker, and Clay was a talker, but CDoc just listened. So now I know, April is the only talker. Hummmm.

  • Jenni… April and my mom. These two.

  • IS JOSH MARRIED?? Sorry to yell, but what seemed like the most obvious question to me was the most ignored by you and April. Not that I’m single or anything, I just like to know there are still great single men out there…just in case.

  • Thanks for such DETAILED descriptions! I know more about them now than I know about Brangelina (& that’s saying a lot!)

    I’m def on the talking side of the talking—non-talking spectrum. Why, I was JUST telling my coworker today about my friend who I met in Thailand who went to a monastery (Ashram?) for a month for a yoga cleanse (whatever), & had to take a vow of silence & couldn’t TALK for a WHOLE MONTH! And I was saying how I couldn’t NOT TALK for 30 minutes – much less 30 DAYS!

    And that reminds me of that book I love, “Eat, Pray, Love,” & that woman goes to an Ashram in India, and and and and

    And you get the picture!

  • I’m a huge fan of Pie Near Woman’s so it’s really cool to read all about her and her family from someone else’s perspective. Ree is my favorite. Color me jealous that you got to meet her.

  • Shelley – I love that book too.

  • Jeez Rechelle, I had you pegged for a talker that talked with your hands in great sweeping motions….you can tell April is a talker, because her blog – talks! And she seems like the talker that talks while walking to the barn, while doing her chores and getting something ready for supper – Or the kind of talker that makes you laugh just with facial expresions and lots of hand gestures and body language! Make sense? Thanks for sharing all of this. I have followed Ree for a long time, but was always wondering where she was coming from or if she was as much fun as she sounds! Glad that you showed me all of it comes straight from her heart…

    I promise not to comment as much now, I have been really going overboard the last few days! I always read you, but dont comment as much cuz, well – I’m not a talker… you believe that right? come on, really I’m not… Why are you looking at me like that? *snicker*

  • CountryMidwife:

    Are you the first to reveal MM’s real name?? Is that okay?!

  • Rachel:

    Maybe Rechelle gave a fake name-I always assumed MM’s name began with a T because of Pesky Tim and his other brother Todd. I figure the kids’ names are pretty much off-limits, although you can find three of them in really early posts (actually, someone might want to tell Ree to change that, best to err on the side of paranoia…)

  • Are non-talking bloggers undiagnosed people with asperger’s?

    BTW, I thought I was you favorite?

  • What a great post! The amazing thing~I had y’all pegged from the git~go; you being the quiet one, April the talker, but both of you very, very funny!

    I’m so glad you all had a great time, and both of your blogs are lookin’ good. Take care and keep up the good work. :)

  • Deb C.:

    I think I may have cracked a rib laughing – you are hilarious! I also had you pegged as a talker as well as April and Clay. At least I was right about the Country Doctor.

  • Yeah… I made up the name Ladd.

    If I was going to make up his name… which now I wish I had.. I would have come up with something other than Ladd. Maybe Herbert… or Tyrone… or Ezekiel.

  • Or Ishmael… or Doc Holiday… or Woody… or Absalom… or Fitzsimmon

  • Lisa:

    She did NOT make up the name Ladd!!

    I’m ashamed to say (well…not really) that I cyber-stalked PW a while back and found several articles about the ranch and her famous (well, in their area) family.

    Ahem. Seems PW’s father-in-law, Pesky Tim and Ladd (yes, that’s really his name) have a problem staying withing the speed limit. Like, anywhere within the general vicinity of the speed limit, and the article was hinting at special favors from the po-lice, dontcha know. Anyway, I took it all with a grain of salt, since I thought Oklahoma was one of those states that doesn’t even HAVE a speed limit. I also found another article about the Drummond ranch’s prowess during the annual rodeo.

    And don’t you just LOVE the name Ladd?

  • Rhonda:

    That was a hysterically funny post. Thanks!

  • What about Duke? That’s a good cowboy name.

  • Bridget:

    thank you for the brief blip on josh. i think he might be the next one up for the ranchelor.

    would you every think of having people at tu casa? give ree a run for her money.

    thanks for taking us on your trip with you. it was fun. well it would have been more fun if i could be eating ree’s cake and riding horses while i was reading your account.

    my talker/non talker status changes depending on the people that are around me. it would have been fun to be around all your non talkers because that is when I break out the stand up/ Cabaret act.

    thank you for your blog. many blessings and continued creativity.


  • Catherine A.:

    hilarious. Love the part about modern dance steps across the light patterns. Oh my goodness, laughed out loud. I think I relate too closely.

  • Florida Liz:

    Wow.. that was great! I think as a fellow non-talker, we have better insight to the people around us. Nothing like being an observer eh? Your observations, coupled with your sense of humor, slay me.
    As for hosting strangers at my house, I can’t think of anything more horrifying. After the “Welcome!” with open arms, a tour of my abode, I’d be struckmute. I am the world’s worst chit-chatter.

  • Still, did i miss something? How’d ya’ll get to be invited to the lodge?

  • OH, great review Rechelle. PW,MM and Josh come alive! And so do you. Ascerbic? I always knew it. April a talker? Can’t believe it. And you lived thru some of the homeschool talk it sounds like. Now when do April and Rechelle come to Maine? I mean, Im’ no Pioneer Women, heck I’ve almost given up blogging…and I don’t cut steak off cows. I’m more of a cow lover, not a fighter. But if you want lobster, clams, seafood, pina coladas and walking in the rain…you should come to MAINE. Start a blog about all the blog people you meet…and I am Totally talking at random here….can’t. shut. up. Sorry.

  • What a great post! And I thought I was the only non-talker in this world, lol.

  • Barb:

    I do not for one second believe that you are a non- talker. Nope…….don’t believe it!!!!!!!!

  • Marin:

    I, too, can relate to your comment “too busy nodding towards the talkers, and grunting at appropriate intervals, while mentally practicing modern dance steps across the patterns of light on the floor of the lodge.” Could it be that we suffer from some form of AADD? No matter, your blog is the best, love your sense of humor…your sister’s too. Found you guys through PW a few months ago. How cool to get to visit the ranch and meet all the characters in real life!

  • It really does depend on the situation. If I know people and have had about 2.5 glasses of wine, I can talk your ears off.

  • Danny laughed at this post. He says it’s the first time anyone’s ever called him a non-talker. He is definitely not a non-talker, but I pointed out to him that he was *very* quiet and reserved that weekend. The truth is he felt waaay out of his element in a way he has never been before. I loved that! Now maybe he can finally understand how I feel 99.9% of the time, you know, while he’s yammering away. He and I are pretty much opposite personality types.

    I am a non-talker who is really a talker deep inside. When I do talk out loud, people often have to ask me to speak louder, but I feel like I’m yelling when I’m speaking, and I don’t like drawing too much attention to myself. Blogging is a perfect fit for me because I don’t like feeling that my words are locked inside of me. I can write much easier than I can talk, and it helps to get my thoughts out and be able to “say” my piece. Having a blog, even though I am not always faithful about posting, has made a huge difference for me. Believe it or not, I’m now much bolder in person than I used to be. Even though I am not much of a talker in person, once you get me started, it can be hard to shut me up.

    I’m glad you posted this, btw. I thought that’s the way it was with you, but I wasn’t absolutely sure. You’re all my favorites–talking or non-talking–for different reasons.

    • Jenni – I did kind of suspect that Danny might be a talker under more ‘normal’ circumstances…

      I feel exactly the same way about blogging. It has changed the way I feel about myself.

  • I was thinking about how to describe myself, as I had a similar experience over the weekend, but then Jenni pretty much said it! My high-school-self was a non-talker, my middle-aged self is mostly a talker, but when out of my element I revert to my high school self! I think I need to start a blog! Rechelle, I can totally relate to your descriptions!–and I love your blog. Jenni, I’m coming over to get aquainted.

  • Are you saying that you DID NOT have 2.5 glasses of wine during your visit with Ree ?

  • No Angie – I probably should have. Yes. I probably should have drank myself into a stupor. Next time…

  • Pioneer Woman:

    I thought Danny and Clay were most definitely talkers.

    I thought I was definitely a talker. And a recipe ruiner.

  • Clay is not a talker. He is a good storyteller and then lapses back into long stretches of silence while April takes up the helm.