Sunday, January 31, 2021

Cowboy Wisdom

What is it that people find so appealing about cowboys? They worked long, hard hours in the saddle and sun, baking their skin as tough as leather. They rarely wasted water by taking a bath and probably worked up a stink only disguised by the stench of their horses and the cattle they herded. And yet, there is something compelling and intriguing about the American icon.

Courtesy of Pixabay

Maybe the answer lies in the cowboy code and the era that he lived. It was a time when a man’s word carried value, a time when there was pride and honor in having a good name, a time when a man protected what was his, especially his woman. He was a friend to any and all and could be counted on to deliver.

We’ve all heard of the Cowboy Code—a code of honor, of love for God and country, but I stumbled across something I hadn’t seen before while working on this article, The Lone Ranger’s Creed. I found it inspiring and wanted to share it with you.

The Lone Ranger

The Lone Ranger’s Creed

• I believe that to have a friend, a man must be one.
• That all men are created equal and that everyone has within himself
the power to make this a better world.
• That God put the firewood there, but that every man must gather and
light it himself.
• In being prepared physically, mentally, and morally to fight when
necessary for that which is right.
• That a man should make the most of what equipment he has.
• That "this government, of the people, by the people, and for the people," shall live always.
• That men should live by the rule of what is best for the greatest number.
• That sooner or later...somewhere...somehow...we must settle with the world and make
payment for what we have taken.
• That all things change, but the truth, and the truth alone lives on forever.
• I believe in my Creator, my country, my fellow man.

Are those great rules to live by?

Courtesy of Pixabay

Cowboys have some sage sayings of their own. They may not be quite as polished as the Lone Ranger's but equally profound, in their own, humble way. Here are a few for you to chew on:

There’s many theories about arguin’ with a woman. None of them Work. (Gotta love that one)

It’s hard to put a foot in a closed mouth.

The challenge is not always saying what you mean, but to say it with as few words as possible.

No matter where you go, there you are. (so true!)

If somebody outdraws you, boy, walk away. There’s plenty o’ time to look tough when your outta’ sight.

Never kick a cow patty on a hot day.

Scars are cowboy tattoos with better stories.

Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear, or a fool from any direction.

Don’t worry ‘bout bitin’ off more than you can chew, your mouth is bigger’n you think.

Letting the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier than gettin’ her back in.

If you get thrown from a horse, you have to get up and get back on, unless you landed on a cactus; then you have to roll around and scream in pain. (love it!)

Good judgment comes from experience, & a lot of that comes from bad judgment.

If you get to thinkin' you're a person of some influence, try orderin' somebody else's dog around.

Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly.

Me again. Some of those are funny, but there’s a lot of sound advice and good logic in them.

So, do you have a favorite cowboy saying? Or who was your favorite TV cowboy?

Happy trails!

Wild at Heart
Romance in the Badlands 1

Vickie McDonough

Dime novelist Mariah resents a cowboy claiming her facts about the West are incorrect. At his invitation, she heads to his ranch to prove him wrong. When her train is robbed, and a man is shot trying to help her, she makes sure he gets home. He turns out to be the very man she came to visit, shocking her into silence about her identity. His grateful sister requests that Mariah stay at the ranch as their guest, but soon she must tell the kind-hearted people who she is. Friendship blossoms, but can they survive angry outlaws from the train who aim to put an end to their lives?

Vickie grew up wanting to marry a rancher, but instead, she married a computer geek who is scared of horses. She now lives out her dreams penning romance stories about ranchers, cowboys, lawmen, and others living in the Old West. Vickie’s books have won numerous awards including the Booksellers Best, OWFI Best Fiction Novel Award, the Inspirational Readers’ Choice awards, and she’s an eight-time Carol Awards finalists. When she’s not writing, Vickie enjoys reading, doing making cards, gardening, reading, and traveling. To learn more about Vickie’s books or to sign up for her newsletter, visit her website:


  1. Thanks for the post. I love the Lone Ranger creed. The cowboy sayings are great, they all sound like Will Rogers. My favorite is probably never approaching a fool from any direction!

    1. That's a good one, Connie. I loved the Lone Ranger shows too.

  2. what a wonderful post today. I loved the Lone Ranger creed and all the wonderful sayings. Things we can all still use today.

  3. Hi Vickie! My favorite cowboy saying is the one about cow patties. My husband grew up on a farm and with 10 brothers and sisters you can imagine what they did with those patties! I know because he told me some of their wild stories. My favorite cowboy is Roy Rogers. Great post and I can't wait to read your latest book, it sounds like a great read, of course, because you wrote it!

    1. Thank you, Karen. I loved Roy Rogers too. I miss those good ol' boy men who rode for right and justice. My dad was the youngest of ten kids.

  4. All such great codes/sayings! But I think the reason we all love a cowboy has a lot to do with the generation that gave us John Wayne, Clint Eastwood, Jimmy Stewart, Gary Cooper, and the old dime store novels that gave them their tin stars.

  5. Yes, they were all great heroes. We need more like them today.