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Visualization During the Coluhraduh Tourist Season

  Why would somebody be in Coluhraduh during the summer tourist season unless they were desperate for the job? It is an obvious question to ask. The answer takes a bit of thinking. Voluntary psychological torture seems worthless but actually it is a wonderful chance to see if you are made of the Right Stuff. But first, let's recall a TV western metaphor I saw once: Cowboy #1 and his buddies were trying to start a fight in a western saloon, so #1 poured beer over the head of a stranger, let's call him #2. They expected the response to be immediate and violent. But #2 barely reacted. #1 asked, "Ain't you even mad?" #2 responded, "No, not really. But don't do it again." That is how to visualize your own central nervous system in Coluhraduh during the tourist season. People impinge on you in a dozen unpleasant ways -- your normal response would be to flare up in anger. But like Cowboy #2, you must visualize your central nervous system as being so inert a

The Windward Side of a Fourteener

  After all these years of practice, I have finally come to appreciate the western (windward) side of major mountain ranges. How embarrassing it is to be such a slow learner. Well, I'm not the only one. Look at many of the population centers of Coluhraduh -- they are on the eastern side of a major mountain range, making them ghastly, dry, fire-prone, and rattlesnake-infested. The perfect altitude is 9000 feet, so I'm dialed in just right. But there is another feature even more important. Clouds, of course. I used to campground-host on the eastern side of the San Juan Mountains, and get perpetual miserable burning sunlight. But on the western side of a fourteener, I have finally found bliss.

Waltzing With Mother Nature

Do you think it is fair to praise Sergio Leone's spaghetti westerns as works of genius? The plots are lame or copied. The dialogue might as well be dropped. The real star of those movies is the musical score of Ennio Morricone. And yet there are some great visuals. Leone understood the climate of the American Southwest and he could express it so brutally and powerfully with the camera. (The movies were shot in southern Spain where the climate is equally horrid.) That is a rare achievement. And yet, I can't think of a scene in his spaghetti westerns when the miracle of rain is portrayed. Maybe a camera isn't the right tool. That is what I thought about on our second day of rain on the mountain. The poor campers! But they seem to make the best of it -- I don't know how , in those tents, and with children and dogs inside. The "pen" isn't any better than the camera for truly expressing rain in the Southwest. That leaves music.   This was a real challenge. Solo

The Answer Was Blowing in the Wind

Only old people remember when beer cans or bottles were the favorite form of litter. Starbucks paper cups came up in the litter-world for awhile, but they never really established hegemony. For the last twenty years or so, disposable water bottles have been the most common litter. A week or two ago I started to notice the appearance of blue cheapie Fauci masks as litter.  Was I reading too much significance into this? I didn't pick them up -- "safety" was my official excuse. But the real reason was that I enjoyed the metaphorical significance. I only leave my mountain once per week, or so. Perhaps that makes gradual changes seem dramatic and exciting. Down in the city, two-thirds of the peasants were in open rebellion of the mask mandate. That is putting it a little melodramatically of course. Just say that they were ignoring it. Even a coward like me got brave. I stuck my chest out, and swaggered into the Walmart without a mask, almost hoping that some little runt would

Greta and I Keep Trying

The world just doesn't appreciate how hard Greta (Thunberg) and I work to save the Planet. My earlier post about imposing a planetary lockdown against scenery tourism did not generate a massive amount of applause. Very well then, I accept the challenge of  improving the plan. Just look at the throw-away water and soft drink bottles that have to be hauled out of here after a holiday! Disgusting. How about a $1 tax on every one of those bottles. I'm not being facetious. I wonder how many of these bottle-junkies are blue-voting, green-voting hypocrites from Boulder and Denver. There should be a "head tax" every time they cross the county line.  Better yet, tourists should be sent to a dot gov site to initiate the process of filling out a simple 23-screen application for a scenery-passport. Guarantee them a response within 6 months. If they don't like this method, they could stay closer to home where there are excellent recreational trails and public parks. If those