ROOTIN' & TOOTIN' is real sex and dating advice from a pretend cowboy. If you've got something weighing on your mind and you need the wisdom of someone pretending to have seen and done it all, wire us a telegram at [email protected].

Hello Mr Cowboy,

Your wise eyes make me feel like you can help me go from lone ranger to finding a riding partner.

I don’t often date and am pretty comfortable being alone, something that I thought was a result of me being picky, busy or uninterested.

But as I get older I’m worried my lonely trails are becoming motivated more by fear and habit, not to mention the fact that I’m not getting asked out all that often anyway.

How do I motivate myself to shake the dust off of a comfortable pair of boots and get out into the world even when I’m not feeling the urgency.

Happy trails from Gene in Melbourne.


Howdy Gene, thank you kindly for your letter.

As any cowboy worth his spurs will tell you, there ain’t nothing wrong initself with being by your lonesome. The cowboy life is a lonely one, and I’ve always held that if you can learn to find joy in your own self, you’ll never be left wanting on account of another person’s failure to give it to you.

That said, as surely as day follows night, there is a rarified kind of contentedness found in a life shared — the comfort and ease of taking on the triumphs and troubles of another, as they also take on yours. Last time I had this was with a man named Wendell who could sing you a song that would break your heart and shoot the eyes out of an eagle from a hundred yards just as easy. Our time together before he shook hands with the hangman was one I will treasure until my own meeting with the Lord.

My pa may not have been the smartest man in the West (or even the second or third smartest), but afore he was sent to Jesus by the speeding bulk of the express to Tallahassee, he saw fit to bequeath unto me two bits of wisdom that I shall never forget. The first is to never pay a man ‘less you can see what you’re being sold. Might seem like common sense to some but many’s the credulous landbuyer who has found themselves the proud owner of an empty patch of God’s own air. The second is to always make sure that before you set your mind to doin something, you make sure you’re doin so for the right reasons.

Are you fixin to date ’cause its what you want, or ’cause it’s the way society tells you things ought to be? If you’re happy living how you are, don’t you let anyone convince you that you need to do otherwise. If’n however you’re for sure certain its goin to add something to your life, then it’s time to saddle up your horse, put on your biggest hat, and get on out into the world.

Tryin to find a partner can be a fearful process, ain’t nobody who ain’t lyin gon tell you that’s not the case. But if you set to it with the right attitude, it doesn’t have to be a trial of biblical proportion. As my pa used to say, right up til he ran afoul of that fateful steamtrain, ain’t no sense chasin a lost steer thats gon come walkin home for its supper anyhow. Findin a partner is not so much a matter of huntin for the right person — it’s not a task at which you can succeed or fail — but just a matter of puttin yourself out there so that maybe you two can find each other.

If youre out in that big ol world, makin new friends and doin the sort of thing what makes you happy, you’ll be bound to come across someone of like mind.

My advice to you, since you so politely asked for it, is to not fixate on findin a person you don’t for sure know exists yet, but to make it so as it’s as easy as possible to meet em if they do.

Sincerely yours,

T. Bartholomew “Hogs” Hogswallop