Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Little Moon Trading Post - Parowan, Utah

Just a quick note to encourage those of you passing through Parowan, Utah on interstate 15, 70 miles north of St. George to stop at Little Moon Trading.

It's a small shop on the right just after you turn the corner off highway 91 onto 143. Nearly everything she sells is handmade by herself. There's interesting jewelry, clothes, handbags and her prices are incredibly low. I'll add a photo and the things I bought soon, but wanted to give you all a hedz-up as we all move toward cooler climes at higher altitudes.

The road to Yankee Meadows, a few miles east of Parowan off 143.



Monday, June 5, 2017

Mojave Nipples

I'm sure you have, on occasion, noticed the astonishing variation in nipples. These two, in Mojave National Preserve, caught my eye.




Symetrical



Asymmetrical


Friday, June 2, 2017

You Can't Get There From Here

Tricky Ricky Rocks decided to sell his Mercedes SL. But first, it needs a new bumper. Fortunately, SL Auto parts which specializes in SL convertibles, had one. And be-inz as hit war on muh way (sort of) I beneficently agreed to save him the postage and pick it up...near Sacramento.  Although exceedingly fragile, it weighs less than ten pounds and is, for a bumper, easy to maneuver.

In the interests of Piddling, eshewing the internet and road condition alerts, I considered several crossings of the Sierra. It was on highway 108 at the base of the foothills that the electronic sign alerted me that it was closed. But there was a nice place to camp.

Next choice, 120 via Yosemite National Park and Tioga Pass, is, I discovered at the park entrance, still closed.  Oh well, I got to see the Merced River at an "unseasonable high" level.





Accepting defeat, I took the short cut out of the park to Merced. The road follows along the river and passes by what I surmise is a CCC-built Visitor Center - closed due to lack of staff.



There's a canvas painting around the door that the bear reminded me of Vince Distasio's style.














I loved the sign at the entrance to the parking. Along with mention of the unseasonbleness, it reminded to "Be safe, stay alive, wear a life jacket." I imagine them saying, "OMG!!! You mean I could DIE here? Watch out, Jonnie! Don't get too close!!!"

I mean, it is common knowledge you CAN kill yourself by drinking too much water...taking too many aspirin, not looking both ways before emerging from your mom's vagina etc., etc., etc. Let's hope it helps keep 'em in front of their TVs so the rest of us can enjoy it.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

San Francisco!!

Even though the Matisse-Diebenkorn exhibit was a bust, the trip into The City was great!!



Visiting from Colombia, they said Medellin is now safer than Schenectady.



A quick stop at Nordstrom just down the street from the museum.





And riding the BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit)




Thursday, May 25, 2017

Matisse-Diebenkorn at San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

Pathetic. Of course there's no way to know how/why they chose what to show, but they were all mediocre. And to charge $31.00 to see 'em! The colors, in nearly every piece, were muddy and there were MAYBE two Matisses that were bigger than 16 x 20 inches (40 x 50 cm). I suspect budget constraints; some curator had an idea but lacked the wherewithal to pull it off.









NOW you can see "the name."




Never too humble for posterity.





On the plus side, there were two rooms of work by Richard Serra! That's a $500.00 White boot for scale. (Well, it's $250.00 each.)





One consisted of an installation.




These are 20 foot-long "bars" of lead. You could feel the toxicity in the air. Almost as creepy as Tommy Hilfiger. No, no, wait. I mean Freddy Kreuger!





Special thrills only available in exotic places....









MENS'






Then there was In Situ. Billed, by the docent overseeing the cafeteria upstairs as "fine dining," what you see below was their $14.00 "hamburger." Called The Apocolypse, it was a teensy chunk of beef enclosed within an edible, charcoal briquette-esque "container" sort of like a chimichanga. We almost sent it back but didn't want to wait while they prepared the substitute.

I had the Lamb Manti. It was three SMALL portions of stringy lamb delicately embraced within some wide noodles...an exotic rigatoni, or some such. The flavor was okay, but at twenty-two bucks it was a rip. I'll get revenge through TripAdvisor. Our complaints elicited offers of a post apocalypse coffee, but it took prompting to get her to add the word "complimentary."

Total bullshit!!







Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Pinnacles National Park, Matisse-Diebenkorn & Mark Johnson

Parks, In My Esteemed Opinion (IMEO), are in close competition with rest areas. The problem is there's not a rest area on highway 25 between Coalinga and Anthony Chabot Regional Park.

I spent the first night, about 20 miles north of Coalinga, California on a turnout on Coalinga Road. It was late afternoon when I'd finally gotten out of town and just couldn't do the remaining twelve miles to the park.

In the morning I was greeted (in an aggressive tone) by Mike Baumgardner with "What're you doing?!"  I rejoined with "Who wants to know?" a bit louder which got him tuh thinkin' 'bout his options. He claimed I was on HIS LAND!!!..."The easement is 30 feet from the centerline." I looked and thought he maybe had me by three feet. Always the gentleman, I gave him his choice of weapons, but once he learned I was enroute to the Matisse-Diebenkorn exhibit at SFMOMA he was all smiles and ready to talk art, cats and what to wear.

Pinnacles wasn't much better. Buggy, screaming children, hollering youths. It finally got quiet around midnight. Only $11.50 with the discount. No hot water at the sinks and those push-on faucets that automatically turn off after ten seconds.

It's all Mark Johnson's fault. If he'd just posted some of his paintings I could have gotten my art fix and avoided all this.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Friendlies

Hitch-hiking was, in my youth, a way of life. I put so many miles on my thumb it still felt natural to extend it. But I was astonished when people actually stopped.

The first guy took me to Little's Diesel, the shop where Phoebe was getting worked on, and waited while I conferred with the mechanic. He then took me back to town and dropped me at the laundromat.

Walking "home," a young woman stopped to inquire about my destination and tell me about the Cowboys' Bunkhouse, a low-cost place to hang one's hat. Fifteen minutes later she came by and said, "I'll give you a ride if you don't mind riding in the back." of the pickup, she meant. I clambered aboard and when I got out I offered to help with the gas. Her emphatic "NO!" left no room for discussion and with smiles and waves I strolled down to camp.

The next time a man who'd worked at BEST FRIENDS ANIMAL SANCTUARY for ten years. He told how the founders were a group of 30 or so who, in the sixties, lived communally. Some were heirs to industrial-era fortunes, but all had an interest in animal rights. Some still live on the property though the organization is now, as a non-profit, controlled by a Board of Directors.

Lastly came Rolene.



Raised in the LDS tradition, her daughter was one of many selected for "elite training" in Texas. When her daughter returned and tried to convince her she'd been sexually abused by the Bishop, her mother refused to believe her. Finally convinced, she lost both her children for a year for spreading heresy. When she got them back she left the community and moved to Kanab.

I was flabbergasted that after enduring so much she had the courage to stop and give me a ride. It's people like her, and the others, that give a BIG lie to the paranoia the media promulgates.

And it inspires a sense of gratitude that, for me, is priceless.

Thank you all for your help and kindness!




Thank god I'm not in Cleveland.