Move #22-3/16 of the Cowboy Kung-Fu Handbook

by Kevin on October 19, 2011

Hooley was smiling as he drove to town. He had that little triangle window propped open that allowed the wind to come right on in the cab. He often wondered why they quit makin’ those things, but before he could delve into the mysteries of today’s truck design, a honking horn shattered his ponderificating.

“Use a walker!! It’s faster than your driving!” A young teenage driver yelled as he waved with one finger.

Hooley just smiled.

Later, Hooley sat in a chair in the doctor’s office exam room. He refused to sit up on that table because of the butcher paper. It made him feel like a piece of sirloin. The doctor finally relented and let him just sit where he was at.

“Hooley, you’re gonna have to keep away from them young horses! If this horse bite would have been a little higher up, I might be tryin’ to sew on your ear instead of sewing up your shoulder.”

Hooley just smiled.

That evening, Hooley was in the little bunkhouse kitchen makin’ some homemade flour tortillas when all of a sudden, a young cowpoke exclaimed loudly, “What is that?!?! Something smells worse than a fart in a hot shower!”

Hooley just smiled.

The next day, a young college graduate came out to the ranch and began lecturing Hooley on the intricacies of modern ranch management, herd health, and how he could teach him a thing or two about real horsemanship.

The young whipper-snapper greenhorn ended up lecturing Hooley on all the things he was doin’ wrong and how his cattle pens weren’t laid out right to ensure a stress free environment.

Hooley just smiled.

As Hooley and Justin rode out to check some calvin’ heifers, Justin asked why Hooley hadn’t told that college boy to mind his own business. “I would’ve punched him in the face if he’d told me some of that stuff,” Justin said.

Hooley just smiled and then said, “I did something just as good. I used move #22-3/16 of the Cowboy Kung-Fu Handbook on him.”

“I didn’t see you do nothin’ except smile.”

“Then you seen it loud and clear,” Hooley exclaimed. “Nothin’ in the world is as disarming to a situation as a smile.”

He continued, “If someone gets mad at you…just smile. If someone doesn’t like what you’re doin’…just smile. If someone asks what you’re doin’…just smile. It throws them off balance. It works for nearly any situation. Any good cowboy knows that.”

Justin smiled and said, “I bet I could do that. But why do you throw the 3/16 on the end of the #22?”

“Because ‘God so loved the world that he gave his only boy, that whoever believes in him won’t perish, but will have eternal life’, and that makes me smile. Jesus told us to love people. If you can’t smile at ’em…you can’t love ’em like he loved us.”


Have you ever used #22-3/16? Tell us about it.


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  • Darby Sorrell

    My favorite quote i heard long time back is: A smile is the curve that sets the whole world straight. So SMILE! I think about 3/16 often as well.

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