TIQ SLO'W is the ethnographic biography of a Native American Chief, Charlie Cooke, a man who by many counts could not exist. But here he is: a cowboy, a ranch hand, a rodeo champ, a Korean War veteran, a regular husband and father, and a truck driver. This is a story of ironies-of a man whose ancestral lands were taken and, in some cases, ravaged, and of a man whose culture was almost obliterated. It is the story of a man who worked tirelessly to preserve these ancestral lands for posterity-for his descendants and for the descendants of the very people who took lands from his forbearers.
TIQ SLO'W, the name by which many know Charlie Cooke, tells of leadership among other Native Americans, anthropologists, civic leaders, and State and National Park management. The leadership and historic perspectives intertwine. Charlie's style is one of influence. With no positions of note or actual authority in many of the situations in which he found himself, he was and is highly effective and much admired. His story includes the Chumash, Tongva, Tataviam and other California Indians he worked with and for on behalf of their cultures.
The story takes place in the mountains along the Southern California coastline and on the serene Channel Islands not too far off the coast. Today this area glitters with the wealthy, the movie stars, the tanned beach crowd, and the daring surfers slapping the world-renowned Malibu waves. They, too, enter the story.