As I write this I am wearing a flannel shirt with pearl snaps, and I have my cowboy boots on in the house because I don’t feel ready for the day unless I have shoes on — even when I have nowhere to be. My roommate’s cat is on the couch, despite my efforts to keep him off of it. And I really can’t blame him. Because it’s warm here. We have the fire going, and we’re listening to Gillian Welch sing ‘Dear Someone.’ Her soft lilting voice lulling this orange tabby to sleep soundly near my hip. There’s a little christmas tree strung with lights over in the corner, and I am partaking in my favorite quiet-time leisure activity — looking at photos of 1940’s cowgirls and drinking Lonestar beer.
After much experience of trolling through LIFE magazine archives for outfit inspiration, the one consistent truth I can share is that the more things change, the more they stay the same. Below, I would argue that the girls at the rodeo circa ’48 don’t look that different from the girls I have befriended in Texas circa 2015. In fact, I would argue that the only thing that really dates these photos are the hairstyles and the lipstick. Rough up her hair a bit, wipe off the makeup, and bam — there’s a fresh-faced woman who looks right at home in present day America. Perhaps listening to Gillian Welch drinking Lonestar beer during Christmastime.