Sunday, September 5, 2010

Hero Interview for Baby Makes a Match by Arlene James

Interview with the hero from Baby Makes a Match by Arlene James:

1. Chandler Chatam, tell me the most interesting thing about you.

I guess I’d have to say that the most interesting thing about me is that I rodeo for a living. Being a big man, I concentrate on team and tie-down roping, as well as steer wrestling. I’m a dab hand at picking and training a horse, too, I suppose.

2. What do you do for fun?

Jumping off a running horse to bring down a wild steer or lassoing the same may not seem like fun to some, but few things in the world tickle me more. When I’m not competing, I can usually be found practicing or working my horses. The least fun thing I do is drive. A rodeo cowboy logs a lot of travel time.

3. What do you put off doing because you dread it?

Well, I’m not one for chin-wagging. I mean, I’m as friendly as most, but it seems to me that a serious, soul-searching conversation can deteriorate into a shouting match pretty quick, especially if it’s my old man doing the searching and my soul in question.

4. What are you afraid of most in life?

Failure. I believe in working as hard and long as it takes to get a thing done, and I am no quitter, but it makes a man sick at heart to see his hard work go for naught. How are folks suppose to believe in you if can’t bring in a win every now and again?

5. What do you want out of life?

Oh, I suppose I want the same things most fellows want, someone who believes in me, someone who cares. Give me a decent patch of dirt to go along with that, and I figure I can manage not to disappoint, God willing.

6. What is the most important thing to you?

A man without integrity is a man with nothing. No matter what he owns, he is worthless. His word and his reputation are all any man ever has, and I guess I’ve learned to hold mine more dear than some.

7. Do you read books? If so, what is your favorite type of book?

I spend a lot of time in lonely motel rooms, so I do read quite a bit and, of course, I love a good western. History intrigues me, especially the Civil War era, and I enjoy a good biography. That said, I’ll read most anything, especially if it has to do with animal husbandry.

8. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

My feet are so big that I have to use special stirrups to keep from getting hung up when I’m dismounting a horse, and you don’t even want to know what a decent pair of boots costs me. Then, too, I do have a bit of a temper, which wouldn’t be that much of an issue, really, if I didn’t sometimes trust the wrong folks. I tell myself that because I’m a man of my word, I naturally expect others to be the same, but I fear that I just may not read people too well. I do a lot better with horses, frankly.

9. Do you have a pet? If so, what is it and why that pet?

If a horse is a pet then I have four. My horses are more partners than pets, though. At least, that’s how I look at it. I mean, I depend on them every bit as much as they depend on me. Wouldn’t mind having a dog. Dog’s are smart and loyal and affectionate, and well trained dog can haze horses as well as cattle.

10. If you could travel back in time, where would you go and why?

Oh, boy, I would dearly love to sit in a room with old Abe Lincoln and sort of, well, pray with him. Now, that was a man of courage and conviction, and he had to spend time on his knees to get through all that the Lord laid on him. I think about that sometimes when things get tough. What would old Abe do? Then again, what would he need with me? So, I guess, in all truth, if I could go back in time, I’d spend another day with my mom. She’s been watching from Heaven for a long time, now, but if I had one more chance to sit down with her, I’d let her know how much she means to me. And I’d listen this time, as she told me how to deal with my dad. The good Lord knows she was the expert on Hub Chatam. I mean, if ever a woman was called to be a pastor’s wife, she was. So, sorry, Abe. I have to go with Mama.

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