Tuesday, June 14, 2016


As the old song goes . . "Don't get around much any more."

But I did voyage the 8 miles into Prescott on Saturday to visit (among other things) the Territorial Days Arts and Crafts Fair.

It included a trip back in time to the days of tie-dye.

Still popular it seems.

There were tchotchkes of all kinds on view and for sale.

And some fine art, like this pottery from Mata Ortiz, in Chihuahua, Mexico.

As I told one lady visiting from Tucson, there is an event on the Courthouse Square nearly every weekend all summer long.

As you can see in the background of the next photo, its big trees and grassy lawn make it a great place to relax throughout the hot season and, perhaps, just listen to some music from the Yavapai Brass Quintet.

Monday, June 13, 2016


Classic car shows seem to be a regular event in our car-crazy culture.

There was one in the parking lot at a local Sam's Club on Saturday.

This Purple People Eater had a modified radiator cap to scare people from getting too close.

The owner of another car may have had a tiger in his tank.

For sure he had one standing guard over his treasured vehicle.

The owner of this beautiful orange Camaro convertible had the original price sticker stuck in one window.

You could have driven this off the lot for less than five thousand dollars.

Remember this long sleek car from 1960?

It's the Chevy Impala.

I had a new one in 1961.

There was a classy looking red Jeepster.

It seems funny to me that a car from 1977 would now be considered a historic vehicle.

There were some older models.

This one supposedly belonged to a gangster who carried a big ball-peen hammer with him to enforce his rule.

After he got out of prison, so the story goes, he changed his ways and drove a Good Humor truck for the rest of his life.

An early low-rider!

This one was from 1923. 

(The car, that is.)

As I said at the beginning of this post, there seems to always be a car show going on in this area.

One of the owners displayed proof from a couple of years ago on his back.

His car, incidentally, was probably my favorite of the day.

As his fellow car owners would probably say: "Sweet!"

Sunday, June 12, 2016


Saturday was a special day in Prescott for Western History buffs.

Four prominent writers formed a panel for a discussion and book signing at the Peregrine book store.

The room, which can hold about 100 people, was standing room only for the event.

The authors, shown here from left to right, are Bob Boze Bell, Paul Hedren, Paul Andrew Hutton and Robert Marshal Utley.

Bell is well-known as a native of Kingman, an artist and a writer, and the owner and publisher of True West magazine in Cave Creek.

Hedren is retired as superintendent of the National Park Service and the author of a new book, "Powder River: Disastrous Opening of the Great Sioux War".

Hutton is a professor at the University of New Mexico, a television personality and the author of "The Apache Wars".

And Utley is the former Chief Historian for the National Park Service and the author of nearly two dozen books, including his latest which compares the lives of Billy the Kid and the Irish activist attempting to overthrow Queen Victoria's rule in Australia, Ned Kelly.

Each of the four men gave presentations on their work and on Western history.

One interesting note was when Bell was asked by a member of the audience if he had any knowledge of the outlaw and member of the James gang, Cole Younger,  having spent time in Arizona.

Bell said he had never heard that but promised to research it.

All in all, for aficionados of the history of the Old West, a most satisfying afternoon.

Saturday, June 11, 2016


I'll bet after yesterday's liquor-infused Friday Funnies, if you noticed today's title you would have been expecting something with Cognac, Cointreau and Lemon Juice, wouldn't you?

You'd be wrong, as Howard Cosell would have said.

What you get instead is this.

They pulled up beside me at a traffic light on my way back from Prescott this afternoon.

It looked a wee bit uncomfortable.

Friday, June 10, 2016


There was a bit of an earthquake over in Southern California early this morning.

Doesn't look like any damage or injuries have been reported but that's always a great excuse to play one of my favorite rock and roll tunes.

If you felt the shaker, that ought to make you feel better.

And now on to the regular Friday Funnies.

Ah, I see Maxine is still worrying about that earthquake.

And her daughter, maybe?

And her drink of choice?

As for the health reasons for drinking alcohol?

You've seen me talk on this blog about my love for the beach life.  

Here's why.

Some people, however, prefer the mountains.

It's a little early to be drinking as I write this in Arizona.

But remember what Jimmy Buffet wrote: "It's Always 5 o'clock Somewhere!"

With those intoxicating thoughts, I wish you an invigorating weekend and always keep grinning!

Here kitty-kitty.

Thursday, June 9, 2016


I was at my doctor's office for an annual wellness visit a couple of days ago and his nurse measured my height.

It came in as 6 feet and one-half inch.


I was 6 foot 2 for most of my life!

In this picture from my boyhood you can see why.

It's those l-o-n-g legs.

That's one of my cousins, Bluegrass Bonnie, posing with me.

Baseball Steve and I have had a running argument for years about which of us was taller.

I always was except when he wore his high-heels.

Cowboy boots, that is.

But about a year ago I was measured at 6 foot 1.

So I ceded the title to him, even without his boots.

When the doctor came in to talk with me he said "You're really tall."

I told him I used to be 6 foot 2 but that I'm now compressing in my advanced years.

We both agreed that it was the result of years of gravity pushing on me.

I'll go with that.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Monday, June 6, 2016


The patriarch of the Gambel's Quail family always gets up high on a bush or a tree or a wall when the young'uns are out perambulating around.

Keeping an eye out for potential danger.

Meantime, mi gato azul keeps an eye on the birdbath.

Incidentally, the blue cat is not named after the tapas restaurant in Prescott, run by my friend Barry Barbe.

But you might stop in for a bite once in awhile.

I haven't been there for a long time but I love the place.

Sunday, June 5, 2016


As the temperatures hover in the upper 90's I am finding our bird bath more and more frequented by the birds of the area.

They come in all sizes, from the tiny Goldfinch above to the larger warbler below.

And the camp-robbing Jays are showing up more often now that they've learned about it.

Earlier in the week a Gambel's Quail approached it but then ambled away.

We've had the Rufous Towhee drinking and bathing in the basin.

We had a very surprise visitor one day with a hawk perched on the edge.

Mourning doves pay their visits.

And yesterday, just for an instant, there was a big-assed PIGEON who jumped up and cooled off his feet.

As I was grabbing for the camera he flew away so you have to take my word for that one.

Saturday, June 4, 2016


It is June fourth, 2016, and I have a fan blowing on me as I sit typing this.

It's cool, even as the indoor/outdoor thermometer resting near me says it isn't.

It seems early this year.

The Weather Gods tell me the average high temperature for this date is 83.

But in 1996, just 20 years ago, the mercury soared to 98.

We've topped that already today and the period of highest heat is still several hours away.

And the official beginning of summer is still 16 days into the future.

This is, after all, an era of much publicity about Global Warming.

It causes my mind to drift into the distant, murky past.

To period of time when an uncle had a cabin on tiny Camp Lake in Minnesota, near to the gigantic Mille Lacs Lake.

It was only about 100 miles north of his home in Minneapolis.

But it was a wonderland to a young boy from North Dakota when we would make our occasional visits there.

My aunt Alla had fixed up the interior to resemble a small lodge, with knotty pine walls and breakfast nook.

My brother and I and our cousins loved the lake.

Boyhood then was something like this*.

Yes, memories of those days long ago provide a spirit of cooling when the temperature scorches us here in sun-blessed Arizona.

*This picture doesn't come from my family. It was only borrowed from the World Wide Web to illustrate a memory.

Friday, June 3, 2016


O.K., neighbors, put those garbage dumpsters back by your houses.

Monday was a holiday so the truck won't be around until tomorrow.


I feel so much better.

With that out of the way, it's on to the Friday Funnies!

And there will ALWAYS be an Ireland, right?

(Oh, that's England?  Never mind.)

Thank you to the contributors among my Gentle Readers, have a specially splendid weekend and remember to always keep a little laughter in your heart.

Here, kitty-kitty.


Thursday, June 2, 2016


Back in 1972, I was preparing to leave WIBC Radio in Indianapolis for an uncertain future in Phoenix.

One day in the newsroom as I stretched my very long legs I was joined by my young colleague, Tom Cochrun, (behind me) and the wizard of our associated FM radio station, WNAP.

That long-haired goofball was the legendary Cris Conner, also known on the air as Moto Groove.

Sorry about the exposure. The picture was an old Polaroid taken against a bright window behind us.

You will notice that Tom and I are properly clad in our neckties and striped shirts while Cris (one of the resident hippies from the station called The Buzzard) is in his much more comfortable tee shirt.

That may account for his big smile.

Tom and Cris have both been inducted into the Indiana Broadcasting Hall of Fame for their years in Indianapolis.

Good guys.  Good memories.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016


The temperature rose to 92 degrees F. here today.

By Saturday, it's supposed to top out at 103 before skidding back into the 80's by the end of next week.

But it's not bad.

I was just sitting out on the patio at 85 degrees or so and there was a cooling breeze blowing and a relative humidity of around 11 per cent.

Contrast that with Key Largo, where my blogger friend Stephen, aka The Chubby Chatterbox, was recently with it's humidity of 100 per cent!

So, like they say, "it's a dry heat."


Think of the poor citizens of Phoenix, just 80 to 90 miles from where I live.

On Saturday, the Weather Gods say their forecast high temperature will be 117 degrees Fahrenheit.

To those of you who live in a Centigrade/Celsius universe, that equates to around 47 degrees C.

And that, my friends, is hot.

Hot by any standard.

As hot as the open door of a blast furnace.

And it's only June.

But I was looking through some pictures from the home I grew up in, in North Dakota, today and I offer them as contrast.

And perhaps relief to my Phoenix friends.

Now granted, I exaggerate the contrast.

Judging from the wreath on the front door, this was sometime in December of a time long ago.

But still.

This is why I no longer live in North Dakota.

You don't have to shovel sunshine.