Southwestern Historical Quarterly
Moving the herd on out toward Wyoming, the singers calmed us fur-
ther with "Whoopee Ti Yi Yo, Git along, Little Dogies." Mr. Dobie was
in full voice with an impromptu assist. No one was surprised. We were
now ready to live more dangerously around the live mike for the sec-
ond half of the show and mix it with an even bigger stampede, as Old
Man Sawyer's steers panicked over the mesa bluff along the Mackenzie
Trail. As for Mr. Dobie, "Laska" had been just a warmup.
Later he signed off with the "Straight Texas" theme song:
Just a-ridin', a-ridin',
Underneath a Texas sky,
Feelin' mighty close to heaven
With the stars so bright and high
When I'm ridin', when I'm ridin'.
Including a verse of Dobie-Fath origin:
Just a-ridin', a-ridin'
Nothin' I'd like half so well
As a roundin' up the sinners
That have wandered out of hell.
And a ridin'.
And yet, some say he was an atheist!
Do I hear a chuckle from an invisible man on horseback? Is he sitting
easy in the saddle, reining loose? . . . hat pushed back . .. reflectively
thumping an empty tobacco pipe against the hollow of his hand . ..
looking cunningly wise?
J. Frank Dobie, Teacher and Friend
JAMES W. WINFREY*
During the 192os, engineering students at the University of Texas
were required to take two years of English, which we thought was an
unnecessary, evil requirement for a BS degree. Not having done too
well in freshman English composition, I registered for English litera-
ture (English 12) as my sophomore course in the fall of 1926. It was my
extreme good fortune to be assigned to J. Frank Dobie. This was a
major providential event that has enriched my life immeasurably.
Ours was a class of about thirty engineers and one academ-journalist
who considered himself somewhat superior to the "slide-rule dum-
*James W. Winfrey, a retired petroleum engineer, lives min Houston.
Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 92, July 1988 - April, 1989. Austin, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth101212/. Accessed April 27, 2015.