Saturday, March 12, 2011

Of all the gin joints in all the world...

Long long ago, in the time before Maggie, I had two active little boys and worked full time as an attorney. Life was just as crazy then as it is now, but for completely different reasons. Any working parent with two little kids knows what I mean. Your are running in five directions all the time.  You want to find way to spend as much time as you can with the kids because you are gone so much. That means your social life consists of play dates and kids entertainment. It was great, but we really looked for things that would entertain us and the boys at the same time. Sesame Street got old fast.

The first thing we found that we enjoyed together was a short lived television show called The Adventures of Brisco County Jr. It aired on Fox in 1993 and 1994; as a matter of fact, it ended just as Maggie was born.
Eddie was five and Tim was three when it was on the air. Brisco County Jr. was a bounty hunter in the old west, but there was a sci fi element to it, too. The show was hilarious. It was action packed and full of unexplained anachonisms. For example, I recall a sheriff in one of the towns was an Elvis impersonator. I still laugh when I think about that.  The boys loved the action and we loved the humor. Or was it the other way around? No matter.  It was something we all enjoyed together.  It was short lived, though. If my family likes a television show, you can almost put money on the fact that it will be cancelled. I guess we are just not mainstream enough.

Brisco County Jr had a huge impact on our family. If the name is familiar to you and you never heard of the show, you are not going crazy. That's our dog's full name, we call him Brisco for short. (We only use the full name when he's in trouble.)   He is named after the title character of that show, even though Brisco (the dog) didn't enter our family until 1998, four years after the show ended.. Most people mistakenly call him Frisco and I have to correct them. Once in a great while someone will ask, like Brisco County Jr.? And I reply, "precisely, " knowing that if they get that reference they very cool indeed.

  Tim, now approaching 21 years old, said he doesn't actually remember watching the show, but he knows he wore cowboy boots for five years because of Brisco County Jr. When his boots got too small he took over Eddie's.He ALWAYS wore them. ALWAYS. In fact here he is in shortly before his 4th birthday in the Spring of 1994 visiting Maggie in the Newborn Intensive care unit. We always had to scrub in and wear a hospital gown when we entered the unit.  Tim was rocking that look wearing the hospital gown and his cowboy boots.

Brisco County Jr. was played by Bruce Campbell, (pictured above) who is currently starring in Burn Notice. He is one of those actors you see all the time. He's always working. He tends to be one everyone recognizes but can't say from where.  That is not true in this house because -- uhhhh well, he was Brisco County Jr. Hello! Are you paying attention. Also, as noted above, we might not be the average American family.

 Tim was sitting in his speech class the other day. He had already made his tribute speech and was  listening to a classmate make hers.  Tim immediately perked up when she referred to Burn Notice because she was talking about the guy who played Brisco County Jr. (Sorry, Mr. Campbell, but it's all about  Brisco) Tim listened with interest not believing someone else was sharing one of our family heroes. What were the chances that someone else shared our fascination with this guy.

Pretty good as it turns out.

Tim was sitting up straight in his chair, looking forward to telling her how much he loved this guy. He didn't get the chance.

As she wrapped up her speech she said,  "that's why I am paying tribute to MY DAD, Bruce Campbell."

Tim's jaw dropped (as did mine when he told me the story). He was so floored she got away before he could say anything. But he will see her in class on Monday. I wonder how often she has to deal with guys who have idolized her dad since before they can remember, who named their dog after his character and dressed like him as a kid.

It probably happens all the time.


  1. Great story, Sally. Boys and cowboy boots -- they just go together! My middle son, Steve, wore his well beyond the time they fit. He didn't mind the sore toes as long as he could continue wearing the boots!

  2. What a wonderful story, and I loved that photo of your Tim and his Dad in the scrubs -- was he NAKED under the gown?


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