is an easy to use, index web page listing links to hundreds of my original photos. Clicking the link
will send you to a page of photos decorated by unique captioning that has been capturing the attention
of the entire WWW .
The MW Review of Books is where I issue eloquent and frank book reviews the everyday reader can comprehend and use as a factor as to whether to purchase the book or not. Go figure, a book reviewer you can believe.
Here we see a lawn mower that had leapt out of his owner's truck at a busy
intersection being retrieved. Expect to see more of this as Phoenix transitions
from a city of computer programmers, bankers and engineers to landscape maintenance men.
God's Gecko makes the GEICO Gecko look like wilted day old lettuce. Just like
State Farm Insurance, a real insurance company, makes
Warren Buffett's GEICO (Government Employee Insurance
Company) look like an operation run out of the trunk of a 1986 Caddy.
While driving to work at 6:30AM Saturday, your Mr. Wonderful noticed an SUV
far up on the landscaping of the Pima Freeway, facing traffic and accompanied
by a Highway Patrol car. Shortly, I came upon (1) the boat, (2) the truck and trailer missing the boat, (3)
and the officers closing down the south bound lanes of the 101/Pima Freeway in Scottsdale, Arizona.
We all see the spectacular flashes of the lightning and, with somewhat less enjoyment, the following
earth rattling rumble they cause as they shatter the sound barrier as they were thrown from Thor's fist.
(Wistfully, your Mr.Wonderful recalls, the once required, grade school reading of the fable of
Rip Van Winkle, where it was revealed that the thunder was caused by the gods bowling in the heavens.) Here we see an ancient saguaro cactus reduced to cinders as his placement on the edge of a wide four lane expressway sealed his fate as an organic green lightning rod.
Found this grumpy desert tortise, obviously not without reason, hobbling down a road
north of Phoenix. Using my Leatherman multi-tool I removed the horrible cactus and placed this
true Arizona native far from any highway.
You love your four-wheelin', but you got no room inside to put your spares, and they certainly cannot fit underneath the carriage like some thin and delicate factory rubber . . . what to do, what to do? You construct an elaborate exoskeleton of electrical conduit on the outside of your Jeep Cherokee simple so ya got a place to strap your pair of gnarly tires. (Photo from May of 2004.)
Natives of the Valley of the Sun can easily tell when summer is over,
because, out of nowhere, like a September storm, bums, tramps or 'the homeless'
are seen with crudely lettered cardboard signs imploring help, on every highway on-ramp and outside
every Starbucks. These dirty denizens of America, many insane, most felonious, seem able to find anything
but a job.
Southwest Gas is laying new gas lines up Pima Road in north Scottsdale. In this surrealistic photo (because I forgot to take my camera off of its manual settings) you can see why I found the operation quite interesting. Apparently, they even bury the pipes in specially trucked-in red-sand-stuff-filler-dirt.
Here is the tallest Ford F250 four by four, I've seen in awhile. I understand this
north of Phoenix owner had it brought in by mule train. I also hear his neighbor's are really
pissed off about him parking it outside on this street of intensely inflated homes now worth
at least one million dollars. But it obviously won't fit in the garage.
Around 5:40 AM this morning while driving the I-17 north, looking off right to the Carefree Highway exit ramp, my eyes were perked up by this scene of two lit-up Department of Public Safety vehicles and several crashed cars. My Powershot SD200 Canon camera froze the flashing 'red and blues' in their blue state along with an eerie reflection bouncing off my hood. (Eerie? Yes, I'm getting ready for Halloween.)
Everyone has heard of 'crop circles', which are believed to be messages from extra-terrestrials who
are so intelligent that they are beyond communicating to us mere Earthling's by using the predominant
language of the planet, i.e., English, and instead they transmit their vast knowledge through pressing
down the crops of farmer's resulting in intricate designs. In Arizona all of our fields have been paved over (like Joni Mitchell predicted) so these E.T.'s are left with leaving us messages on our black asphalt parking lots.
Getting off early this 104F degree Monday afternoon, I thought I'd swing by the Sam's Club gas station that
is situated north of the Frank Lloyd Wright and 101 interchange. However to my surprise, I found the entry
intentionally blocked by this gasoline tanker truck. How convenient. Had to pass on the gas.
But I'll tell you, the next time S. Robson Walton requests entry at Mr.Wonderful's
gate house he will get an earful. Not. I can't risk the loss of my Sam's Club card, it is the only
way I can afford to feed both my Cuervo Gold and Sweet & Low addiction. Not that I mix them together. But,
you know what I mean!
As I was performing my pre-dawn morning patrol, I noticed this mini-boulder trailing
a path that could have only been manifested by its own movement. Apparently, this magical mystery rock could and does
self-propel, powered by some unknown and most likely, unknowable source. I thought to phone National Geographic Magazine and the scientists at Arizona State University (remember in the old black and white movies where they
would always phone "the scientists" at the local college? "Operator: Give me Bellview 6256, I want to talk to Dr. Lurie. Hurry!") but duty called, and instead, after checking for sleeping scorpions, gila monsters or elves laying underneath,
I grasped the five pound rough-hewn stone and utilized it to prop-up a fallen street sign against its designated post.
At 5:22AM, as I was performing my moonlit patrol, I noticed this little bitty baby
rattler trapped in my headlights while crawling across the road. He was maybe eight inches long. I instantly remembered the
story of the man who picked one up by grabbing it behind the neck, but not quite close enough to
the head and the venomous pocket pit-viper turned and bit his thumb. He almost died. This is because,
so I am told, that the baby rattlesnakes (like teenage boys) cannot control the amount of venom
they inject, so they inject all they have with a single bite, leaving them non-poisonous for hours.
I had to piss him off to get him to coil for this dramatic shot <grin>.
According to internet sources at GasBuddy.com this Circle K, a little east of the 101 on Shea Boulevard has unleaded regular gasoline as cheap as Sam's Club and no waiting; especially at 4:45 AM. Price is still a shock though.
Rather than showing a picture of a roof rat that today was a victim of an auto accident, i.e., an auto accidentally squashed him, I've dug into the archives. From February of 2005, the last month it dropped below 100F degrees in The Valley of the Sun, I bring you Scottsdale's photo radar van, which seems to be at more locations than McDonald's. I am upset that city officials will not just come out and admit that this means of 'traffic enforcement' is vastly more about money than about the public's driving safety, but since they set the 'photo-flash' at the legal speed limit plus 11 miles per hour, I do not think that is unreasonable. However, they must realize that they will not slow down the 50,000 unregistered and uninsured vehicles piloted by ILLEGAL'S shod with 'borrowed' license plates tied to false addresses, with each one polluting our air as much as an 18th Century coal-burning paddlewheel steamboat fighting its way upstream on the muddy Mississippi River.