YouCantHandleTheTruthTruthiness is a word that didn’t exist in the 1880s. It hardly exists now, except in the political and entertainment worlds. A funny guy named Stephen Colbert invented it to carry a TV show about fake truth. It was made up stuff, what Angus would have […]


Ambiguous2To a first-time reader, Angus looks as a character hard to pin down. Not enough about him comes out in the early pages of Ten Shoes Up. So it’s hard to say whether he’s  seeking reconciliation or company. He could be for the law, “agin” it, […]

Affective Realism—When A Gun Is Not A Gun

A recent New York Times column, provocatively entitled “When a Gun Is Not a Gun,” offers legitimate science to prove that lawmen, at least some of them literally perceive things that aren’t there. That research project sought answers to a modern conundrum. In a U.S. Justice […]

Talking Ain’t Doing

Back in Angus time, before New Mexico was a state and after lawyers showed up in Colorado, there were cowboys that talked and others that just did the job. Sometimes they fit the movie version in the 1950s—strong silent types. Angus was never garrulous. Even though he was a lawman and worked for federal judges, […]


When Angus pinned his first Deputy United States Marshal badge on in 1881, he had no presumptions. None about his own life and hardly any about how other people saw the world. He didn’t know the law presumed innocence, or that guilt had to be proved beyond any reasonable doubt. Truth be told, he didn’t […]

Don’t Shoot First

Angus lived in the 1880s. He’s been six-feet under for more ‘n a century now, but he still has something to say, once in a while.

2014 would have flabbergasted him. We call ourselves civilized? Take all the 2014 shootings—well, not all of them, just the ones where one man kills another by blowing one or […]