Aaron Tsinigine says there’s not really any good story behind the Coors buckle he wears every day. But that really couldn’t be further from the truth.
Despite having chalked up wins everywhere from the Indian National Finals Rodeo to the U.S. Open, Tsinigine still keeps this buckle on his belt. He took it from then-roommate Derrick Begay a few years back, after Begay had replaced it on his belt.
"My dad won it in 1984 at an amateur Indian rodeo association’s finals,” Begay said after checking with his father, Victor, about where the buckle came from. “I wore it because it was the shiniest little buckle my dad won, I didn’t even know what the buckle said on it. I just went for the shiniest. I wore that buckle most of my childhood. I wore it to school every day even though it said ‘Coors’.”
But why does Tsinigine still wear this throwback?
“Begay used to wear it and he’d win all the big rodeos. I was broke and I was down, and I was fixing to go to work,” Tsinigine remembered. “I was caught between going to Flagstaff to meet my boss to go to California to work and going to some small Indian rodeo. That buckle was hanging in Derrick’s room, and I just took it and put it on. Everyone was loading up to go to the rodeo, and I just called my boss and said I couldn’t go to work. Then I won the rodeo, so I haven’t taken it off since.”
And the only reason Tsinigine will trade out the old buckle? “I’m going to wear it until Derrick takes it back.”