by Skip Cohen
Throwback Thursday's fun is in two parts - First, there are the memories old photographs bring back. Second is the never-ending reminder of the important role photography plays in our lives. It's been eight months since most of us hunkered down, and spending a little more time looking in the rearview mirror has become a welcome change from the Covid-19 reports and politics - or for that matter, just about anything in the news!
The year is 1985, and Polaroid was a sponsor of an IMG event that turned the rodeo into team sports for two years. While many of us aren't in strong rodeo markets, if I remember my numbers, the rodeo was right up there with NASCAR when it came to popularity and attendance. IMG's push to get Polaroid involved was based on the fact there was a huge segment of the market the company's advertising just didn't reach.
For two seasons, I was the manager of Polaroid's rodeo team. The cowboys on each team contributed to their sponsor's points, and at the same time, maintained their individual standing with the PRCA (Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association.) leading up to the Nationals.
If you follow rodeo, some very special cowboys were on our team. Right next to me, I'm the knucklehead with his eyes closed, is a bull-riding champion, Tuff Hedeman. He won the world championships three times, not mention dozens of other accomplishments over the years. You might also know a little more about him if you saw the movie "8 Seconds." It's the story of bull-riding champion Lane Frost, played by Luke Perry. One of Frost's best friends was Tuff, who in the movie was played by Stephen Baldwin.
Next to Tuff are Bud and Jimmie Monroe. They're both national champions; Bud as a saddle bronc rider and Jimmie as a barrel racer. And right behind Jimmie is Rod Lyman, who was also a national champion steer wrestler, and president of the PRCA for many years.
Every industry has its champions, not just because of their personal achievements but their support of their industry and local communities. I may not remember everybody's name in the group above, but I sure remember their attitude and love for the sport. I went into the assignment, not knowing anything about the rodeo, and came out totally impressed with the athletic ability and each member of the team's outlook on life - not to mention so many great memories. It was simply a great group of people, and always focused on giving back.
So, when you look back on your career, what are some of the more random and out-of-the-ordinary things you've done?
Meanwhile, one of the best lessons I learned is that when the cowboys start practicing backflips off the barstools, it's time to go home!
Happy Throwback Thursday! Take the time to wander down Memory Lane. These days you don't have to go back very far to find moments that will make you smile.
Check out "Why?" one of the most popular features on the SCU Blog. It's a very simple concept - one image, one artist and one short sound bite. Each artist shares what makes the image one of their most favorite. We're over 100 artists featured since the project started. Click on the link above and you can scroll through all of the episodes to date.