Trouble Up Ozone Way
(or, Ozone Troubles in Buzzard Gulch)

“Reach for the rapidly depletin’ ozone layer, boys! Just funnin’ with ya, Tex. Ya know I never carry my six-gun into Buzzard Gulch. I reckon we need keep an eye on ‘em here in town, what with so many young’uns about. Just not the same as out on the range.

“Ozone, Tex. What keeps the sun from burnin’ you crispier than Cookie’s bacon. Even Slim’s leathery ol’ hide won’t protect him from them UV rays. That’s the part a sunlight burns your skin, Tex.

“We gotta lean on Slim, make him go see Doc Herschberg next time we hit town, have those irregular moles of his looked at proper. Damn fine dermatologist, that Herschberg. Means ‘skin doctor,’ Tex.”

Livin’ Real Healthy-Like

“Cookie, next time you rustle up a batch of your world-famous chili, you should gussy it up with some organic brown rice. You combine them rice and beans together, ya get a dern fine complete protein. Also, that extra fiber helps keep ya regular. Fiber, Cookie. Yessir, kinda like chaw, but you swallow it. Don’t give ya lip cancer like chaw does, neither. Says so right there on the tin, Cookie.”

Tradin’ Fair and Huggin’ Trees

“If it’s all the same to you, boys, I thought we’d try some new coffee—got it from a fair-trade outfit down Boulder way. Better for the local growers, and saves the shade trees, so they say.

“Speakin’ a trees, any you cowpokes wanna lend a hand plantin’ seedlings on them deforested slopes yonder? Should keep the topsoil up there sittin’ pretty, and forestall some of the erosion that’s causin’ all them nasty floods downriver. Native species, too.”

Lickin’ Climate Change
(the Cowboy Way)

“Truth be told, Tex, them thar buffalo produce higher-quality meat, and use a lot less water and pasture, than them longhorns. And they’re free-range, too, not like them newfangled cattle operations up Chicago way. Put out a whole lot less methane ta boot.

Methane, Tex. From their flatulence. Yessir, same as breakin’ wind. Almost as bad as you after some a Cookie’s famous chili. Just funnin’ with ya, Tex. Seriously, though, ya combine it with all the smoke from that coal burnin’ back East, that methane is makin’ the whole wide world heat up. Why, the weather on the range is crazier than a stepped-on rattler. Ain’t ya noticed how the summers are gettin’ hotter than the preacher’s sermons, winters colder than Cookie’s stare if ya bellyache about his chow?”

Same-Sex Hitchin’
(or, A Hard Time Quittin’ Rusty)

“Well, Tex, I sure do appreciate your straight shootin’ about you and Rusty. I reckon it’s sure ta make some of the other cowpokes a might twitchy. But, seems to me, whatever happened between you two up on that mountain is your business, pardner. The preacher can call down hellfire and damnation all he wants, but, at the end of the trail, who are we to judge?”

Six-Guns in the Wrong Hands

“Dagbernit … ya got me, Preacher … Funny, but I reckon you just proved my point … about gun control and concealed weapons … Well, you can shoot me in the back, but you … can’t stop progress … Tex and Rusty’ll start a new life somewheres, maybe out Frisco way … You watch.

“That you, Doc Herschberg? Thought I was a goner … What’s that? You and the marshall came out to try Cookie’s new chili, caught that preacher red-handed? … I reckon federal gun laws apply, then … By the way, after you patch me up … you gotta take a look at them moles on Slim.”