putterings       119   <   120   >   121       index

thick, and a safe distance from the work

      Now, as Bruce changed the lumber from the raw spot on his right shoulder to the raw spot on his left shoulder he was wondering how much more of a chance was due Jennings, how much longer he could hold his tongue. A more extended acquaintance with his “practical man” had taught him how easily a virtue may become a fault.
      In his insistence upon solidity and exactitude he went beyond the point of careful workmanship and became a putterer. He was the King of Putterers. He could out-putter a plumber. And when he had finished it was usually some unimportant piece of work that any man who handled tools could have done as well in half the time.
      Bruce had a favorite bush, thick, and a safe distance from the work, behind which it was his wont to retire at such times as the sight of Jennings puttering while the crew under him stood idle, became too much for Bruce’s nerves.

Caroline Lockhart, The Man from Bitter Roots (1915) : 237
same (NYPL copy, hathitrust)

The manuscript (two years’ worth of work) was lost at the bottom of the Caribbean waters; Lockhart laughed it off, and wrote it again. See Mary Shivers Culpin, Caroline Lockhart Ranch, Bighorn Canyon National Recreation Area. Rocky Mountain Regional Office, National Park Service (October 1981) : 11-12 (pdf via waybackmachine)

Shrewd observations of character; the plot itself is nigh impossibly complicated (at least judging from synopses of the 1916 movie of the same title, including this at IMDB, and another at AFI Catalog of Feature Films (waybackmachine)

Caroline Lockhart (1871-1962), journalist, novelist, newspaper owner/editor, anti-prohibitionist, litigator, rancher
John Clayton, “The Old West’s Female Champion: Caroline Lockhart and Wyoming’s Cowboy Heritage,” wyominghistory.org (November 8, 2014)
more photos at
“Caroline Lockhart Elected to the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame”
American Heritage Center, University of Wyoming
https://ahcwyo.org/2018/07/16/ (July 16, 2018)

26 May 2022