November 13th, 2013
by Ginny Shook
Guess I learned a thing or two from watching The HighChaparral. Wasn’t every person who lived on the ranch a multi-tasker? Able to fulfill any sort of job asked of them by Foreman Sam Butler or Big John himself…whether they thought they were capable or not? After a while, they didn’t even need orders. They could see what needed to be done and they stepped up and did it. Their amazing fortitude and pro-activeness (whether that word existed back in the 1800s or even in the late 1960s when the show first aired) helps me today to face the challenges of modern life.
Once upon a time I was just a High Chaparral fan. As a big Joe Butler supporter, I decided that Bob Hoy deserved to have a website. I didn’t know a single thing about building websites but I couldn’t let that stop me. Didn’t John Cannon build the High Chaparral on a dream? When something is meant to be, everything just sort of falls into place. I contacted the webmaster for Don Collier’s website, asking for advice. Wouldn’t you know, she was looking for someone to take over Don’s site. And not only did she know about websites, she had even taught several courses on the subject for newbies like me. How perfect could it be? The training couldn’t have been easier. After I learned the ins and outs I started on Bob’s site. Long story short, in a year I was a webmaster of not one but two High Chaparral cast member’s websites. My two favorite cast members, I might add.
Before too long we had started selling their autograph photos. Bobby got Henry Darrow, Linda Cristal, Ted Markland (who also wanted a website) and Rudy Ramos involved. And then I was booking them into festivals and fan events. I met Susan and Kent McCray and did a website for Susan’s new internet radio show. All because there was a need for these things and I decided, even though it was all new to me, that I could do it. When Don and Bobby tell you that you can do something, you believe it!
Of course, times change. Penny McQueen’s incredible talent has created a whole newHigh Chaparral Universe. She even has her own production company, aptly named A Penny For Your Thoughts Productions, from which she will take good care of Big John’s legacy.
Me? I am going through another learning process, just like the Boss requires. Like so many others, the company I’ve worked for (that paid the bills so I could have my HighChaparral fun) is closing its doors. I’ve started my own business, working with the Avon Company, which is fun and exciting…and hopefully lucrative. Okay, I also feel like the Apaches and Comancheros are constantly waiting just outside the door in an attack to rival the one in The Arrangement, but like the Cannons and the ranch hands, there is also a feeling that I can do this! If I’ve learned anything from The High Chaparral, it’s that learning and the hard work, and a little bit of fear, never end. But the rewards can be great.
(If you’re interested in checking out Avon, either for their great, low-cost products or because you’d like to start your own business, too, check out my Avon website:http://ginnyshook.