The Jump

Just moments earlier, all the pigeons were on the platform above.  The roof has bird spikes near the edge to help prevent the birds from pooping on visitors.  Well, the pigeons can spot a birder from miles away and they love to hang out on the top platform and then jump like they are going to land on the spikes and skewer themselves.  They miss the spikes at the very last second.  Pigeons love the concerned look on birder's faces as they narrowly miss the spikes!

The above story is fictitious except the part about missing the bird spikes.  They don't always miss.

Santa Cruz, California 2012


Tim wasn't sure why, but, every time he came to this area to surf, he felt like he was being watched.  Not, like from the people casually standing along the bluffs, but, like being targeted by some mechanical tracking device.  It gave him the willies and certainly interrupted his concentration.

Santa Cruz, California 2012

This Might Be The Day

Now that the chum line was out, Baxter settled down to wait for the big one.

Santa Cruz, California 2012

Second Thoughts

Rinus the Dog loves his people.  He trusts them to make wise decisions like selecting the best food for him or the sturdiest play toys.  But, buying a concrete boat?  Rinus is beginning to wonder if maybe it's time to look for some new people.

Aptos, California 2012


Mosley walks the beach every day with his metal detector.  He has found all kinds of little trinkets and a little money.  On this day, he was surprised to discover a large area that was signaling.  During low tide, Mosley had 25 friends help him dig and what a find!  A Maserati MC12.  Unfortunately, high tide came in before they could move the car and Mosley was never able to locate it again.

The above story is fictitious.  Mosley doesn't own a metal detector.

Aptos, California 2012


Lawrence Kress loved his last name so much that he would put it on everything including other people's buildings. He had a crack crew that could apply the Kress name to a building overnight to the surprise of other building owners. After the fourth time, Mortimer Rotten gave up and left the Kress signs on his building much to the pleasure of Lawrence.  Usually,  building owners demanded Lawrence take the Kress name down immediately!

The above story is fictitious.  Lawrence's last name really wasn't Kress.

Bakersfield, California 2012

On The Run

Bill Hockum and his gang rode into this box canyon after avoiding the posse.  It looked like the perfect place to hole up for a while.  They probably would have succeeded detection except for the visible trail of horse poop that lead the law right to them.  Turns out, there weren't that many horses in downtown any more.

(the above is hog wash)

St. Vincent Court, Los Angeles, California 2013


William was strolling down South Hill Street on his way to pick up Jolene.  It was technically their first date.  William had on a fresh pair of sneakers and he'd washed his jeans.  His shirt was from yesterday, but, he'd given it the sniff test a couple of times and it was fine.

Along about 650 South Hill, Boris Clackenstein, who was suffering a mild mental condition and thought he was a Knight of the Round Table, tossed his chamber pot contents out the window and it landed on William.

(You can finish the story.)

Los Angeles, California 2013

Flaps Down

Captain Jack had sworn he would never let a stewardess land his plane again.  But, here he was. Sophia had the controls.  He really needed to talk to his shrink, but, all she was interested in was flying his plane!

San Diego, California 2013


Elsie sat on this over crossing every night to watch the lights.  It was mesmerizing!  She thought it was wonderful that all those people had a place to go.  When she was done watching, she returned to her cardboard box for the night.

Ventura, California 2013

Stand Up Guy

Lawrence loves his job.  All he has to do is stand around and greet people as they pass by.  The only downside is that his back is permanently attached to the building exterior.  That makes it very difficult to relieve himself.  No privacy.

Ventura, California 2013

Message From The Rodent Society Of Kern County

Please help us find our mascots.  They were last seen hanging out in front of Naked Al's Tattoo last First Friday.  We thought they followed us into Guthrie's Alley Cat, but, obviously they didn't.  They will come to you if you offer them Rex-Goliath cabernet sauvignon.  They like cheese also.

Bakersfield, California 2013


Hortense was late for dinner.  His Mom told him he better get home before the meal cooled.  Hortense had seen his buddies scurry along the power line conductors effortlessly.  That would cut off about 5 minutes.  What Hortense didn't realize was that the weight and size difference between a rat and an elephant would make the shortcut ridiculously slow.  Hortense didn't make it home in time and had to eat cold hay soup.

The above story is fictitious except the part about cold hay soup.

Bakersfield, California 2013


It was a long trip from Mars and the first thing the passengers were told was to look and act like the natives.  So, they all purchased cameras and wandered around the beach snapping shots.  Fit right in!

The above story is fictitious except the part about fitting in.

El Porto Beach, California 2013


Melissa and Jack were so involved in their conversation about the number of Powerball tickets they should buy that they didn't notice the fire storm heading right for them.  Evidently, a  number of flammable constituents in the Pacific Ocean had reached their flash point.

El Porto Beach,  Manhattan, California 2013

The Scene

Dexter showed up at the scene.  It was a pretty large area to investigate.  Dexter was befuddled.  Not only didn't he remember this site, but, he never disposes of his victims on land.  Does he have a rival?

The above story is fictitious except the part about disposing bodies.

Kern County, California 2013

Pride and Optimism

Clem brought his daughter, Lucy, to work with him.  She had never ridden in a train engine before let alone driven one.  Pretty big day for a four year old.  Too bad Clem suffered a heart attack and hadn't bothered showing Lucy how to stop the train!

The above story is fictitious.

Kern County, California 2013

Loose In The City

This town has always been full of sound.  Whether it is the pop of guns as another one bites the dust,  the twang of country, the rhythm of blues, the thump of rock, the hammer of heavy metal or the slap of hockey sticks; there is sound.  Everything makes music.

Bakersfield, California 2013


Zeeke loves his GoPro.  He has it strapped to the toe of his skateboard and shoots everything.  He does this so he can document where he's been.  After his 39th tumble, he started having trouble remembering where he skated.  Or, maybe it's because of the number of fatties he smokes every day?

The above story is fictitious except for the part about the fatties.

Hollywood, California 2013


Bill Clydmore watched the weather all the time.  He figured this would be the year of extreme rains and flooding.  He was going to be ready to catch the big one, so, he mounted his big rod on a downtown building, got some live bait and prepared for the water to rise.

The above story is fictitious except the part about live bait.  There was a lot of that walking around.

Hollywood, California 2013

Expansion (B/W)

At first glance, you would naturally guess this device was used as a hay bale loader.  That's probably how it started life.  But, innovative young men found that it loaded cases of home brewed beer just fine!

Bakersfield, California 2013


Nick walks this street every morning picking up trash.  He's mainly looking for things he can recycle for a little cash, but, he picks up everything.  Nick is an asset to the community.  Unfortunately, this morning, the gutter goblin was extremely hungry and grabbed Nick by the ankle as he passed a drainage opening.  Someone else will have to finish picking up.

The above story is fictitious.  Nick never picked up anything other than a headache after long nights of blackjack.

Bakersfield, California 2013


Erdap Letoh had a dream.  He wanted to run his own hotel.  He had 63 family members living in town and figured they could all work for him.  It would be a real family business.  Erdap bought a building, remodeled it and was getting close to opening when he realized he needed a name for the hotel.  In some ways, Erdap was a little slow.

Erdap was really starting to sweat because he needed to order signs, hats and t-shirts.  As he put his name tag on in front of the mirror, big family, everyone had name tags, Erdap noticed that his reflected name spelled out Padre Hotel in reverse letters (don't go all optical on me here, it's just a story).  Well, that was it!  Erdap called his hotel the Padre Hotel.

The above story is fictitious except the part about having a big family.

Bakersfield, California 2013

Say Who?

Barry was a troublesome teenager.  Not really much different than other teenagers.  He pushed the limit on anything an authoritative figure requested or demanded.  As far as he was concerned, "Please Keep Off" didn't apply to him.  That's why Ferdinand the bear was extremely pleased to have something special for dinner rather than the regular regiment.

The above story is fictitious other than Ferdinand really enjoyed his meal.

California Living Museum, Kern County, California 2013


I'm fascinated by old outdated software like Corel Painter Photo Essentials 4 for Windows.  Pretty crude.

Yosemite National Park, California 2005


We walked up and down the streets until my legs were about to tell me they had no more go in them.  Our destination was this structure and the pain was well worth the view.

Grace Cathedral, San Francisco, California 2013

Black and Yellow

Objection to the building of the Golden Gate Bridge was pressed by the U.S. War Department.  It feared Navy ships could be trapped in the San Francisco Bay if the bridge was bombed or collapsed.  Eventually, the military caved in, but wanted the bridge to be covered in stripes.  The Navy pressed for black and yellow stripes to help passing ships with visibility in foggy conditions.  The Army Air Corps wanted red and white stripes to make the bridge more visible from the air.  Obviously, the military lost this battle.

Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, California 2013

Breaking Glass

Everyone has heard of Virgil and Wyatt Earp; well, if you are interested in American wild west history, that is.  However, little is known about their distant second cousins, Burp and Turp Earp.   It seems Burp and Turp  were electrical lineman in the Mojave Desert of California for many years, but, neither one could hold a job for long.  They would come into town after work and get tanked on Sarsaparilla and then go out and shoot insulators off the cross arms of the poles they had strung wire on.  It seems their other brother by another mother, Phelony Earp, was an electrical insulator manufacturer and all three brothers were in cahoots to try and bolster Phelony's business.

(everything above is fictictous)

Randsburg, California 2014

Fish Corner (B/W)

There were times in the 1800s when this corner was covered with water.  At that time, the Kern River was running freely through the valley and once in a while would flood.  We don't have that problem today.  The river doesn't even reach the city any more.  Over the years, organizations have decided that natural water doesn't belong to the people.

Bakersfield, California 2014

Climb (B/W)

People in Bakersfield, California are always talking about having nothing to do for entertainment.  I think it is primarily people who grew up with electronic devices in their hands and not the cardboard boxes I played with in my childhood.  It makes me think they have no imagination.  For instance, if you have enough to drink, you try climbing this street light!

Bakersfield, California 2014


Everyone tried to deposit their waste from Saturday night, but, there wasn't enough room.  It's a common occurrence, so, you wonder why the city doesn't put out a second container.  Well, it's really not a problem.  The normal morning drove of pigs haven't come through yet and they will take care of the mess.  What?  Your city doesn't have a drove of pigs doing cleanup?

Bakersfield, California 2014

Cookin' Blue Sky

Who out there thinks Walter White died in the last episode of Breaking Bad?  That's exactly what they wanted us to believe.  Just like Elvis and Jim Morrison are supposed to be dead.  I just wonder what they're cooking in this plant?  It was really hard to get a good look as we bounced along on a train, but, I'd swear I saw a Fleetwood Bounder parked in the parking lot.

New Mexico, USA 2014

Chevy On A Stick

Sculpture created by artist Barbara Grygutis in 1991.  Formerly called "Cruising San Mateo", but, locals refer to it as "Chevy On A Stick".  It was erected as part of a street-widening project on Gibson Boulevard at San Mateo.  Initially, there was a lot of controversy because of the cost and aesthetics, but, it has become a darling of the locals.

Albuquerque, New Mexico 2014


It was a cold morning in 1998 when the first wave hit the Earth.  Unfortunately, the pilot was not completely awake and misjudged his landing.  What the heck.  Let's open a coffee shop and hang around for awhile.

Albuquerque, New Mexico 2014

At Rest

I'm sure this building had many years of service and saw a lot of interesting things.  If only buildings could talk.

Building: "What do you want to know?"
Freaked out photographer: "How about a little recent history?"
Building: "You watch TV?  You see Breaking Bad?  They did some filming right behind you on that corner!"
Freaked out photographer: "Well, why am I taking a photo of you then?"
Building: "Because I can talk.  The street corner can't."

Albuquerque, New Mexico 2014

Have An A1 Day

Gobnad Ztenylow always dreamed of owning his own car wash.  However, more importantly, what Gobnad really needed was a front to launder the money coming in from his ayahuasca business.  A slightly illegal source of revenue, but, extremely lucrative.

Godnad was all set to purchase the carwash when a couple of smucks named Walt and Skyler stepped in and spoiled his plans.

Albuquerque, New Mexico 2014

Hitch Up The Stagecoach

How do you pick a location to build?  Wells Fargo chose this spot because it's where Hertimer the Horse bit the dust.  Hertimer pulled stages for five years.  This day, Hertimer was tossing back a few after work with a couple of Clydesdales and just dropped.

The above story is fictional.

Albuquerque, New Mexico 2014

I'm Not Doing It (B/W)

Early American western movies and TV shows always had a scene that involved a horse and rider descending a steep embankment or canyon.  I've talked to all the surviving horses who were in those shots.  They tell me the movie cowboys were a wild and crazy bunch of guys.  The cowboys were always, "let's go down this hill 'cause it would look cool on film" and the horses were like, "are you out of your mind?"  The cowboys always won the argument with their horses because the prop folks would come up and zap the horses with a cattle prod to startle them over the edge.

(By the way, those funny-looking protrusions are particular body parts of the horses that didn't make it to the bottom.  Absolutely no truth to the above content.)

Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument, New Mexico 2014


Greek mythology tells us that King Sisyphus was made to endlessly roll a huge boulder up a steep hill.  The assumption is that Sisyphus did this task near Greece.  However, there is new evidence that this all took place in New Mexico, USA.  At the moment, I don't remember what the evidence was and it hurts my head too much to think about it.  Just take my word for it.

Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument, New Mexico 2014


Naps are a good thing.  I find as I get older, I like them more.  Always have your camera when you nap.  Sometimes you get a very different perspective when you wake.

Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument, New Mexico 2014

Haberfelde Building

Once a year, many years ago, before the white folk invaded what is now known as Kern County, the various Indian tribes would get together for a potluck.  There were always representatives of the different language groups such as Salian, Yokuts, Tubatulabal, Koso, Ute-Chemehuevi, Chumash and Serrano.  Everyone picked on the Tubatulabal for some reason.  They called them "pine nut eaters."  Eventually, the Tubatulabal got their revenge when they realized they could dam the Kern River and control water flow to the valley.  After that happened, everyone was nice to them and always invited them to powwows.

Bakersfield, California 2014

Reflections In Time

It was exactly on this spot in February 1628 that Many Drooping Feathers of the Kawaiisu tribe realized he could make a ton of acorns by setting up a war paint salon.  At that time there was a little bit of bickering going on between the Kawaiisu and Tubatulabal.  Generally, things were pretty quiet between tribes, but, someone had made off with a year's supply of Tubatulabal pinon nuts and folks were pissed and when things got heated up, people painted faces and yelled a lot.

(the above is a totally fictitious historical account)

Bakersfield, California 2014


The argument started at the Jazz Lounge.  Coleman and Thelonious were discussing the greatest jazz performers of all time and couldn't come to a compromise.  Coleman was going with Duke Ellington and Thelonious pegged Louis Armstrong.  After a while, things got really heated and that's when the clarinet and saxophone got into the mix.  Two busted lips and a night in jail didn't change either Coleman's nor Thelonious's opinions.

Bakersfield, California 2014

Tied To You

Sometimes, I don't pay attention.  Okay, a lot of times I don't pay attention and it's probably getting worse the older I get.  I always assumed railroad ties were wooden.   Wood was all I ever noticed.  I stand corrected.  These suckers must weigh around 700 lbs. each.

Bena Road, Kern County, California 2014

Wrong Side Of The Tracks

Bill was really lucky.  He made it to the water tank.  It took him about 33 hours, but, it was worth it.  Unfortunately, the rest of Bill's group forgot how frequently trains pass over these tracks.  Snails are pretty slow and don't understand what vibrations in the tracks mean.

Bena Road, Kern County, California 2014

Open Hunting

How many snakes slither around this field looking for baby squirrels?  My guess would be, not enough.  The landscape is pockmarked with squirrel holes.  There is hardly enough solid ground to support a tripod!

Blue Mountain Road, Tulare County, California 2014


Your timing to view Nojoqui Falls has to coincide with rain.  No rain, no falls.  Come while it's raining or the day after a good rain.  The falls evidently runs from surface water.  Now, I suppose, if someone wanted to use the falls for a movie, they could place a water tank upstream and film while releasing water from the tank.  Mention that idea to Quentin Tarantino the next time he wants to blow something up in the area.

Nojoqui Falls Park, Solvang, California 2014


Most towns have 5k, 10k, half marathon, marathon events.  We have "fill a stroller up with whatever you want to drink and start pushing till you drink it all or pass out" events.  Evidently, this stroller served it's purpose and the pusher man/woman had enough and left it in the middle of the street.  I checked, there was nothing left, so, I just took a couple of shots and then pushed the stroller to the side of the street.

Bakersfield, California 2014

Last Butt

I'm really surprised I don't see more rats running around downtown.  Most of the glimpses are when they crawl out of a vent and grab a quick smoke.

Bakersfield, California 2014

It's A Great Day

Rex woke up late.  Smashed his elbow on the soap dish in the shower.  Spilled coffee on himself driving to work.  Had a flat tire.  Got fired for being fifteen minutes late.  The whole day just went to crap.

On the drive back home, Rex heard a news story on the radio about an explosion at the nearby waste management facility.  Figures!

San Francisco, California 2014

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