I happened to see him a couple of times in person (on the Grand Ole Opry, no less), and even though he had probably sung the songs he sang a million times before, there wasn't anything perfunctory about his performance. You couldn't help but feel as though you were watching a legendary figure do his thing. And the suits he wore--you can't write about him and not mention the Nudie suits. It's the closest those guys ever get to drag, I guess. His album covers were awesome, too. I have a copy of The Bottom of the Bottle, which pictures a nice clean & sober Porter holding a liquor bottle, inside of which is standing the drunken bum version of Porter. (The album features the songs "Wine" and "Wino"--he was probably the first country star to do concept albums). There's another one called You Got-ta Have a License, which shows him dressed as a game warden in a rowboat. (I guess the theme of that one is "Golly, you hafta have a license to do anything nowadays!") There was a lot to admire in the guy, beyond the fact that he helped launch Dolly Parton's career.
"The Cold Hard Facts of Life" is a classic. It was written by Bill Anderson, and it's probably my favorite Porter tune. It's one of the all-time great cheatin' songs. So go ahead--drink a fifth of courage, and walk in.