Last Rig Standing

Last year, OTC set an attendance record with nearly 110,000 O&G professionals from around the world; the most since 1982. More than 4,500 rigs were running that year, and by the mid 80’s, less than 600 rigs were turning right. Arguably the worst bust ever. To most in the space today, something they will only know of through the memories of the old-timers. However, if you haven’t had a chance to drive through Midland/Odessa, the picture above tells it all; dozens of brand new 1500HP AC drilling rigs standing tall, waiting for their chance to get in the mud.

Everyone has an opinion, but most drilling contractors agree that the days of mechanical rigs are behind us, at least here in the US, and in large part. SCR rigs have replaced most, and AC rigs, believe it or not, are still being built by the heavyweights in our industry, albeit at a slower roll. The cost corrections have been made, oil prices are climbing, and hundreds of the land rigs that have been stacked will be back to work before we know it, along with the ones that can actually run them. My prediction anyway.

But, I guess the smell from the blood in the streets travels East, because we’ve been fielding a plethora of calls and emails from MENA, Europe, and Asia from drilling companies who are curios to learn what they can buy on the cheap. And of course, an SCR rig is a major upgrade for a lot of these drillers, so needless to say, we’ve become quite popular. Prolific times, no doubt, and a day that I certainly will later reminisce with my children, should they decide to follow the steps of their father, and grandfather. I sure hope they do. I love this business.

So, what will be the last rig standing? Your guess is as good as mine, but I’d bet big that it will be one whose life was long, hard, and at times lonely. Even rigs must succumb to the circle of life.

Hope to see you at OTC!

About Henderson

Henderson Rigs & Equipment is a Houston-based U.S. supplier of new and remanufactured drilling rigs and drilling equipment to domestic and international drilling contractors. In addition to our own new and remanufactured equipment, Henderson engages a large, Worldwide network of quality vendors, which allows us to locate virtually any piece of equipment used on a drilling rig.

Hard to be a Hustler

After selling DOYLES in June of 2012, I had a choice. Stay on with the company that acquired us, have a big title, a nice salary, stock that vested over three years, or…I could quit, or resign as some would call it. Of course, I did what anyone entrepreneur would do in my situation, I quit after only four months. Quitting meant that two thirds of my income would be interrupted for what was an unknown amount of time, and it also meant forfeiting the stock the company had worked so hard to keep during our negotiations. But, I felt as if I had no choice. For 16 years at that time, I’d never worked for anyone, and although I liked the people that I would be working with, I needed to be in control of my own destiny. Donedees.

So, there I was, no job, no business to speak of, no team, and no real income. I was in EO (Entrepreneurs Organization) at the time, and I remember making a presentation to my forum taking them through the 11 opportunities I was pursuing. I was throwing everything up on the wall to see if it would stick, and it was as if the wall was made of teflon. One of my forum mates challenged me to figure out what I was going to focus on, because no one can pursue anything and everything that they are interested in, and be good at all of them. So, I did; got focused that is.

As I reflected over the success and failures I had experienced over my career, I realized that the O&G space had been good to me, and that it was best that I leverage the skills and experience I had to impact the industry in a positive way. Although being in business for many years at the time had rounded out my skills, my passion was and remains sales, marketing, branding, business development, etc. All customer facing aspects of running a business. I can read a balance sheet, income statement, and cash flow statement better than most, but prefer to discuss strategy, vision, and market domination through unparalleled service, honesty, and transparency.

So, I launched at OTC in May of 2013, as it allowed me to marry the skills I had developed by running a large web development company in the late nineties with the previous 10 years I’d spend in the oilfield equipment space. It was a very successful launch, and although there’s been some rough patches, the company has developed into a viable on-line marketplace for drilling rigs and equipment. Plug: If you have rigs and equipment for sale, and you don’t have them listed on DX, shame on you. Then, in November of the same year, part of my non-compete expired, so I started trading equipment again. Boy, was I disappointed.

For the past ten years, I had invested a significant part of my time and energy into building a company that stood for something, and I was under the impression that once I was “back in business” I’d have a huge following of fans and supporters. Nope. I was discouraged, depressed, and at times angry. And then it struck me…I was a nobody. It’s funny now, but at the time, I realized that although we had built a good reputation as a company, I had been successful in making sure that the company didn’t need me to operate as a business, and as a result, no one knew that the values that built DOYLES, were ones I had instilled in the company, and it’s people. It was time for me to go back to work, and build relationships one customer and relationship at a time.

I hit the road, made mistakes, and more phone calls per month than I had in previous years combined. If I were going to be successful in the buying and selling of rigs and equipment, I was going to have become a hustler, no differently than I was when I started my first business more than 15 years prior. Smile and dial, greet and meet, conventions, luncheons…the whole nine yards. Oh, and once I got up off my ass, and got a goal, good things started happening, and mama got a brand new bag.

Whether you run your own business, or work for someone, you can still be a hustler, and control your own destiny. That doesn’t always mean you’ll be rich, or wealthy, but if you want to be successful on your terms, you got to find the hustle, but be warned; it’s hard to be a hustler. Leaving you with one of the greatest movie scenes ever from Pain & Gain.

About Dan Henderson
Henderson is the founder of Henderson Rigs & Equipment, a leader in the sales and brokerage of drilling rigs and capital equipment; as well as the founder of, the fastest growing, commission-free, on-line marketplace that connects buyers and sellers with no middle man.

Long Live Love

I grew up in an AG (Assembly of God) church. I was taught that all people without Christ are going to hell. Trained how to “win” all unbelievers to Christ. Was taught to speak in tongues, which often involved being slain in the spirit, rolling around on the floor, and or running around the church. As I child, I often felt like God wasn’t within me, and I would do the things I saw other kids and adults doing to win #acceptance and approval from my Mother, and her peers. I was taught to judge, and reject those who believed differently than I had been taught to believe. That most people were without God, and destined for an eternity of damnation, and suffering.

When I was in my early twenties, I began traveling the world, and quickly became exposed to many other world views and religions. Although my own faith had been something I’d struggled with for quite some time, it steadily became apparent to me that I believed differently than I had been trained. Years later, I can unashamedly profess that I remain a person of faith, but a faith I have arrived to on my own experiences, studies, convictions, and what I believe to be a natural desire to do what is right, no matter the cost. I’m not a professing Christian any longer, but remain close with many believers, was married in a traditional Christian ceremony, and acknowledge and value many biblical principles as true. Of course I’ve also discovered that most of those values are consistent among most of the mainstream religions, which was a bit of a surprise I must admit.

Our World in recent years has been plagued by the division that difference brings. Different faiths, race, world views, cultures, and in some cases values. I’m particularly bothered by the amount of fear, hate, and bigotry that so many Muslims endure outside of the Middle East. I’ve traveled to the Middle East, specifically, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Yemen, Bahrain, Turkey, Oman, Kuwait, and Egypt (technically North Africa, but a Muslim country.) In all my travels, not once have I ever been afraid of being an American in a Muslim country, even when I was in Bahrain a week before a riot broke out, or in Egypt, three days after the US ambassador was killed in Libya, and there were so called riots all over Egypt. In fact, we drove by one of the riots, and it was underwhelming to say the least. I’m in no way making light of the terrible acts that terrorists are responsible for, and the killings of innocent people. However, unlike most Americans, I have at least a dozen Muslim friends, some of which are Americans. What’s most interesting is that they call a terrorist the same thing I call them; a terrorist, because terrorism has no religion.

I often feel like I’m not doing enough. Look, let’s be clear, if I felt as if someone’s religion or world view put me and/or my family at risk, I would respond defensively. I’m no fool. However, I really feel as if so few are asking the right questions, but instead are just jumping on the no toll bandwagon. Sadly, I think that most, on both sides of the argument are just not bothered enough by what’s wrong to stand up for what is right. The attitude is, hey, “you stay out of my way, and I’ll stay out of yours.” It’s only the radicals and lunatics in the World that have a voice, because it’s the only thing the media will report on.

Think about this. Young black men are killing each other by the thousands each and every year, and our government and society are allowing it to happen. The solution is simple; education and opportunity. School shootings are happening so frequently now that most feel it’s not if it will happen again, but when. The solution is simple; better controls on gun ownership, which may included psychological exams. Gay men and women are being brutally attacked, bullied, and killed for loving a person of the same sex. No one needs to “understand” this, they just need to #accept it. Homosexuality isn’t a trend. The point is, there is never a reason to resort to violence in the name of any God, or world view. Every man, woman, and child, regardless of race, religion or sexual orientation has just as much right to their next breath as you or I do. And this I believe is the answer. For each of us to resign to what we think we know about God, religion, or particularly our neighbor, and start finding out for ourselves what’s on the inside of strangers. I’m confident if humans so desired; we’d find much more sameness than difference in every stranger and friend alike.

When watching movies like Milk, Selma, Remember the Titans, I’m overwhelmed with a sense of grief, and responsibility to stand up for what I believe is right, and as simple as it is, I do believe in “live and let live,” but most of all, I believe in “love and let love.”

I don’t think stoning women who commit adultery is justifiable, nor do I think thousands of America’s youth killing each other is necessary. I don’t think slaughtering Jews or native Americans was something any God would have ordered. I think above all, the problem remains, the ignorance of weak men, and the fear in those who have the power to change the World, one mind at a time. Have I changed yours? You have the power to do the same.

#acceptance |

Doyle Henderson

Bottoms Up – Why Oil is Going to $150

When I was five years old, my Dad took my Mother and I to Jamaica. It was my first trip anywhere, and it was paradise. My Dad wore a gold nugget Rolex, and carried literally thousands of dollars in cash in his front pocket. He bought my Mother a diamond that made every woman jealous, and we were rich. And then oil went to $10 and the nearly 5,000 rigs that were drilling in the US went to 1100. We were broke, and although my Dad didn’t sell his gold nugget Rolex, he had me put it in the floor safe of the home we lived in on Cornett. Since then, I’ve lived through my own oil boom and bust, and likely will see a few more. My skin grows thicker by the minute.

What I find entertaining are the theories manufactured in an effort to explain the feast or famine nature of the O&G life. Supply, demand, dictators, war, cold winters, WMDs, bailouts, etc. You name it, I’ve heard it, and if you’re in the O&G, you can add a few descriptors yourself I’m sure. The point is, no one knows if and or when any or all of these influencers will drive the price of oil up or down; one can only speculate. However, and as silly as it sounds, anyone can predict two things; it will go up, and it will go down. The key is being right. Rarely is anyone right, or at least consistently right. If and when you are right, everyone loves you, but the minute you’re wrong, the booing begins.

You’d think that by now, someone really smart would have figured out a way to strike a balance between growth and sustainability, but for the most part, the only companies that can stay steady are the ones that have figured out how to make hay, and sit on it. The small guys not so much, which is why so many get washed away in the huge swells of the O&G storms.

But before you think this is a doom and gloom piece, it’s not. I happen to be one of those that have grown to appreciate the volatility of the industry. The older I get, the more I realize that it’s all about how you play the game. The price of oil will be $150 before long. No, I can’t tell you when or why, but I can tell you it will be sooner than later. Why, because the World needs it badly, and the swings typically don’t last. And, although I’m a supporter of alternative energy, we’re likely a hundred years away or more from replacing oil and gas as the primary energy source.

So, instead of worrying about how many rigs are being stacked, how low the price of oil will go, or whether you’re the next to be let go; focus on doing your job, servicing your customer, and getting your house in order, because before long, the World will give us a reason to be excited once again.

Oh, and if you happen to have a nugget Rolex, they’re back in, so wear it proudly. You know who you are.

The Last Picture

On May 28th, 2014 at around 8:30am, my mom took her last breath. I put my hand on her chest and left it there until I could no longer feel her faint heartbeat. She went out of this world with all but one of those she brought into the world by her side. A week prior was the first diagnosis she’d received; colon cancer, stage four. It wasn’t my mother who received the news first, it was me. Six days later, she was gone. She didn’t drink, smoke, and ate rather healthily, but cancer couldn’t care less.

During the last week of my mother’s life on earth, there was sadness, forgiveness, togetherness, and lots of remembering. I listened as each family member reflected on their own unique relationship with the matriarch of our family.

Last fall was when my mother began to experience pain in her side and lower back. For ten years, she left her diabetes diagnosis go untreated, and when she finally went to the doctor for her pain, she argued with them about further testing. If you knew her, this certainly wouldn’t be a surprise to hear, as she was a stubborn woman. Knowing what we know now, it’s very possible that my mother would still be alive today had she gone in for extensive testing and treatment. However, that’s not what my mom wanted. Her lack of action to seek the medical attention her body was requesting may in fact be the only selfish act my mother carried out; maybe.

A month before she died, she had a liver scan that indicated she had dozens of lesions, which immediately concerned her doctor that not only did she have cancer, but that it hadn’t originated in the liver. When she called to tell me, I asked her how she felt, and she said without hesitation, “excited.” When I asked why she was excited, I already knew the answer; “because I’m ready to see Jesus.”

Over the course of the next four weeks or so, I spent as much time with her as possible, and watched as she hurried to do things for family and strangers alike that demonstrated her selflessness and concern for others. She struggled to do right by her children with what she was leaving behind, as she wrestled to manage the pain in her ailing body. She said many times that she knew she was going to die, but I’m not sure if she believed it, or wanted it so. I know I didn’t.

Not only was I her youngest child, I was her only biological son. As a boy, she instilled in me the values I still hold true today. Be honest, fair, just; forgive those who wrong you, turn your other cheek, help those who can’t help themselves, etc. When I became a man, and began to evolve spiritually and mature mentally and emotionally, our relationship changed, but never did the mutual love and respect we had for each other. My father’s death, my divorce, and the death of my faith were the three things that greatly challenged our relationship, however, we made it through all of it by communicating how these life events shaped what we needed from one another. In all my years as my Mother’s son, I’m grateful that I never allowed our differences to compromise the relationship that begun when I was just a boy.

Here is what I wrote and recited for my Mom’s Eulogy:

If I only had One word to describe my mom it would be…Selfless

Never did she live a day without serving others. Even in her passing,
she served those closest to her and remained concerned with those who
depended on her stability most.

She lived a life of purpose. A lighthouse to her family, friends,
church and community.

Her faith was immovable. Even for those who didn’t believe as she, her
genuinity and conviction was irrefutable and undeniable. She was in
love with the one who loved her most, and who have her purpose.

She served family and strangers without prejudice. She was a giver.

She was strong. Not only could she outwork most men in the room, she’d
do so without one complaint.

She was rich. She would always remind us that her father owned the
cattle of ten thousand hills.

She was wise. Life experience, street smarts, and some attitude made
her a person of interest. Never have I met a person that knew her that
didn’t love her, respect her, and was touched by her testimony or act
of kindness.

To the family:

She is gone but not forgotten, for she lives on in us. I can see her
in each of you, in me, and those who will only know her through the
stories we tell of how they remind us of her. My challenge is that we
become half the woman she was. For us, for our children, and for her.

No words will take away the pain, or the loss, and time has met its
match. So we grieve. Our hope is that what she believed so deeply is

Since her death, my heart is filled with sadness. That she will never meet my soon to be born son August. Never will she sleep in the room we built just for her. Our Tuesday afternoon calls have ceased, and there is now a hole in my heart that I will attempt to fill by sharing stories about her with those who will listen. Whether I see her again is something I am unsure about, but then again, all I have to do is close my eyes, look in the mirror, or in the faces and actions of my children to see her legacy live on. In honor of my Mother, we’re naming our son August.

Everyday Daddy

Several years ago while going through my divorce, and during my weekly brain purge with my shrink at the time, I was struggling with the possibility that I would never again see my kids every day, as divorce was imminent for their mother and I. I also remember feeling guilty that after more than a year had passed since my ex and I had separated that I had met a beautiful woman who had given me hope. As I was teeter-tottering with the emotion of it all, my counselour suggested that my new found love was God’s way of giving me a second chance, at being a husband, and an “everday daddy.” When those words came out of his mouth, I literally thought of hitting the guy, but I froze. I couldn’t move, couldn’t speak, and I was full of both fear, and anger. I didn’t want to be an everyday daddy to some kid I’d never met, and I certainly wasn’t ready to accept the idea that this woman was sent by God, or anyone else for that matter, to be my life partner.

Well, it turns out, he was right, on both accounts. Not only did I fall in love with that strange woman, she quickly became my best friend, lover, and later my bride. And now, a few years later, but only a few short months from now, we’ll be bringing a baby boy into the world. My chance to be an everday daddy. Even as I write these words, my heart breaks for the child I do not yet know, and the children I miss everday I don’t see their sweet faces. A father’s heart torn, not for how I feel, but how my children may feel about this new addition to our family. Will this child close the loop, or create tension, possibly even jealousy. Both I think. Blended familes can be tough.

When my ex left, she took the kids and never returned, not to mention managed to keep our kids two hours from Houston. We’ve been to court a few times since then fighting over money and custody, but until the law changes, or she has a labotamy, the kids aren’t going anywhere. So, being closer to them, involves us moving, which has all sorts of implications. There’s not a day that goes by I don’t ponder the possibilities, but not unlike every other blended family, being close, doesn’t necessarily mean having access. Projections play clearly in my mind by marrying assumptions with experience.

So, here we are, five months pregnant. My wife is glowing, happy, and anxious about becoming the mother she deserves to be. For the past few years, she’s had all the responsibilities of being a mother, to children that only by marriage and the lessons they’ve taught her, belong to her. Yes, they are my children, she is my wife, but pressed together, we are a family. I’m working hard to accept some of the things I cannot change, and enjoy all the many gifts God has given me. My hope is that this child will bring our family even closer together. And I guess the reality is, that no matter if I am physically present or not, nothing will change the fact that everday, I am my children’s daddy.

I am an everday daddy!

Son of an Addict


My Dad died September 21, 2005.  He was 66 years old; I was 27.  His passing devestated my Mom, and ultimately led to our family becoming even more estranged.  I never knew my Dad was the glue that held our family together; I never knew he was my hero.  Today would have been his 75th birthday.  I think of him often, possibly even daily.  I miss him.  I miss having a Father, especially now that I am a Father.  So I reflect.

Growing up, my Dad wasn’t a big part of my life.  We seldom played catch, or spent quality time together.  He took me hunting a few times, and occasionally we’d go fishing.  We didn’t watch sports together, and although he did attend many of my games, he never took a genuine interest in me, or the things I was interested in.  You see, my Dad was an addict, and his addiction robbed him, and his family of many things, however, somehow, he managed to function in society, build a business, provide for a family, and most of all, he loved us.  I vividly remember watching him so desperately try to get back all he’d lost in his dying hours.  I swore I’d never let anything come between me and my family, but I did.  I am the son of an addict who for the past 15 years have too battled with addictive tendencies and selfish behavior.  I am my Father.

I remember feeling angry at him for many years, and even at times today because of the life he chose.  He wasn’t there for the birth of my kids, he wasn’t there through my divorce.  But I got over the anger, and now I just feel sad.  Sad, he’ll never meet my wife Ashley, who would have been his trusted ally.  Sad that our children will have to learn of him through pictures on the wall and memories we share of him.  Even now, I weep.

I’ve made many mistakes since my Dad’s death.  With the business, my family, and myself.  However, in the past few years, I’ve grown in as many or more ways.  For the first time in a long time, I feel happy…I feel fulfilled.  I’m learning how to live life to the fullest, to speak my mind with love on my tongue, and be comfortable in my own skin.  I’m beginning to see the good that came from the bad, and people let me tell you…there are good things to come.  At my Dad’s funeral, I read a poem I wrote.  It reads as follows…

I can only imagine… what life will be without him.
Shoes too big to fill; an act too hard to follow; a life never to be outlived.
A great man; a captor of the hearts of people.  Filling every room he entered with an energy only described by experience.  A mystery to many, a legend to all.
As he epitomized the American dream, generosity never escaped him.
Simplicity was his suit, hard work his trump.  A leader’s leader, a deal-maker, a lover of life.  Hard-nosed, but loving.  Opinionated, but kind.  Confident, but not arrogant.  Proud but not boastful.  A patriarch.
Never will he be replaced, and life on earth for those who knew and loved him, will never be the same.
However, pushing through our grieving, we must celebrate.  Because in death, there is life, for all those who believe.  He believed in the one who came that we may have life; that is Jesus Christ.  He accepted the free gift that is available to all of us.  But like you, I still wonder, what is he doing now?
I can only imagine.

Although some things have changed, all of the things I wrote about my Dad nearly nine years ago remain true.  He was an incredible man.  He touched the lives of so many through his huge personality and generous heart.  Although he wasn’t the type of Father that coached my little league baseball team, I learned a lot about life, and although he and I were very different in some ways, we are similar in many more.

He was funny, generous, and very affectionate.  He’d cut my fingernails in church, and take me for grape juice when I was suppose to be in trouble, and of course, he’d smoke on the way to and from.  He taught me how to sell, and always said…”if you learn how to sell, you’ll never be out of a job.” He was right.  He taught me how to make it on my own by telling me no, however, I always knew he would be there if I really needed him.  I could go on and on about my Dad, and probably will for the rest of the day with family and friends.  When you lose someone, all the things that drove you crazy are exactly the things you miss most.

So Dad, if you can here me.  I love you.  Dad, I miss you so much.  I still pick up the phone to call you before realizing I can’t.  I miss your laugh, your heart, and sitting on the porch with you.  I miss picking you up for breakfast.  I wish you could meet Ashley, Kyson, and Sariah.  Oh and Dad…Ashley’s pregnant!  Ashley told me not to tell anyone, but I can’t stop.  I’m trying very hard to be the man I want to be; a loving Father and Husband, but I often fail.  I took over the business you built, and did some cool things before having to sell the company.  It was a very difficult decision, but I didn’t have much choice.  I’ve tried to look after Mom, but she seems to be handling herself fairly well.  I know how much you loved her, and she talks about you all the time.  Dad, I’m not sure if Heaven is real, but I sure hope it is, so I can see you again.  Life on earth isn’t the same without you.  I love you Dad.