It Was The Kazoos That Pissed Off The Bull

…he was not a music lover


Day Two will go up tonight.



CritterCon 10

Day One, Part Two

After leaving Half Moon Bay, we only had to drive 4 miles down the highway to reach our next roadside attraction, the Wooden Presidents.

(Silky: As opposed to just the wooden headed presidents.)

Penny Gudermann started doing chainsaw sculptures as a young teenager with her dad. Eventually, they opened a shop selling their carvings and that shop is still open.

About 12 years ago, Penny started carving a statue of Thomas Jefferson. It turned out really well, so she moved on to Washington, then Kennedy, then all of the others. Once she had them all, up to Obama, she opened up the lot of them for public viewing.

(Luke: At $2.00 a head, but children under 10 are free.)

All of the statues are carved from native California oak and the detail is incredible. During the tour, Penny told plenty of stories about working on each president, as well as her ongoing work on the First Ladies and a few of the Founding Fathers. All told, we spent nearly an hour and a half there.

And yes, there is a small selection of bumper stickers, t-shirts, etc.

(Daisy: We have a very large wall covered in bumper stickers from these trips. Uncle Gabriel was very impressed. He has not seen all the fridge magnets yet.)

By now it was nearing 4:00, but we figured we had enough time to visit our next attraction, the First Church of the True World History, located just outside of Santa Cruz. It only opened a couple of months ago and I had heard a bit about it. As you are about to find out, it elicits quite a bit of interest from us here at Casa Cross.

(Silky: That is Daddy making with the understatement of nearly British proportions.)

The church charges nothing to visit it, so the bunch of us (the critters in their android bodies) went in. We were met by Pastors Oscar and Tanya Mendina, the founders of the church. They explained that they started the church after finding evidence that world history was being manipulated by a strange group of humans and dogs of the hound variety, at least one of which was some sort of tentacled mutant. It is a testimony to our self control that none of us laughed or looked shocked, although both Grace and Avis did give Sasha & I the “SEE? We told you you’d get caught!” look.

(Leon: BUSTED, Uncle Doc!)
(Sasha: I need to make us some sort of cloaking device.)
(Roxy: Or you could just stop messing with history.)

(Sasha: Honey, we are MAKING history.)

Pastor Oscar then showed us around the church museum and damned if they didn’t have a pretty impressive collection of written accounts and even a few photographs. Fortunately, we always subtly change how we look, so the photos of Sasha show a black & white basset and photos of me show a younger clean shaven guy with short hair.

(Silky: Dad actually looks kind of dashing in the photo of him with Lawrence of Arabia.)
(Max: On the other hand, that 14th century Chinese painting of Sasha looked like something from Creature Features.)

Both pastors related stories of how these strange dogs & humans (Spike has gone with me a few times and one of the stories is how Grace accidentally caused a pre-teen Martin Luther to start thinking the way he did) have been around for at least 7,000 years, and maybe longer. Obviously, he told us, they are immortal and could be sent by God or Satan, the jury still being out. He also related how Men In Black and government agents have stopped by the church to question them several times.

When the tour and stuff was done, we bought a couple of t-shirts, then left, chuckling all the way to the bus. As soon as we were on board, Grace went into lecture mode and Sasha and I had to swear to be more careful when we went through time to ensure that history comes out correctly.

By then it was almost 6 and time for dinner, which we have just finished eating. Tonight is movie night, with some conversation after. Tomorrow we are off down the coast for more adventures.

Destination Sign When We Started: Invidia
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Alpha Complex

QM Radio Station: One Hit Wonders, 1925-2015


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The Mysterious, Yet Oddly Romantic, Story Of Mostly Purple Patty And The Haunted Shopping Mall

…co-starring her pet emu, Walter

The Trip to DogCon 3: Day 5, Part 1, In which we quickly recap yesterday, drive on a twisty mountain road, view scenic panoramas and watch tourists behave stupidly.

(Note: All comments by Flash are in italics)

Recap of yesterday: I was not feeling 100% ok yesterday. In fact, I was feeling somewhere around 30%, with dips as low as 12%. Still, one must press on, if only to get one’s travelling partners to shut up so one can peacefully die. We left Missoula and drove through very scenice areas on our way to Kalipell. We stopped at two roadside attractions: In Ronan, we saw the Miniature Indian Village, which is big, covering an area about 100′ by 75′ and pretty detailed. It cost $2.00 to go through and yes, they sold a variety of souveniers. You can guess which ones we bought. In Big Arm, we visited the Big Arm House, which looks like the right arm of some enormous giant who is showing off his bicep. The interior of the house has a necessarily odd layout, but the view from the fist room (65 feet up) is pretty impressive. The inevitable t-shirts look pretty good, too.

Once we arrived in Kalispell, we did some sight seeing after I ate a hearty bowl of antacids mixed with aspirin, chased by about 30 gallons of water. After wandering about looking all touristy & shit, we went back to the KOA and pretty much goofed off. By dinner time, I was able to eat real food.

That big funny looking house was full of mice! I could smell them all the way out in the bus! Curse Dad for putting steel security mesh on the windows!

Glacier National Park, so far: To start with, I need to point out that our Magic Bus is 32 feet long. This meens that it cannot traverse the Going To The Sun Road, the only road that bisects the park. This is because, due to the narrowness of the road and the steep dropoffs and the lack of guardrails along much of it (due to winter avalanches), no vehicle over 21 feet may go all the way through the park.

We did not know this in advance and so there was much wailing and gnashing of teeth this morning…but only for a few minutes. As always, our trusty onboard mechanic, Joe, solved the problem. With a small bit of (possibly illegal) jiggering to the TARDIS unit, he reduced our bus to a mere 15 feet long externally. Inside, nothing changed and we were off on the road to adventure.

Unfortunately, the narrow road and very steep dropoff along much of the road to adventure (and we were on the dropoff side most of the time) caused much nervous agitation and panicky comment among everyone but Winker and I. I was secure in my driving ability and Winker has no depth perception. Everybody else made terrified noises, barked or hissed, depending upon their species. When we stopped at the first scenic viewing area, Flash had hidden in a cupboard, Grace & Sharon were nervous wrecks and Lucy had peed on the carpet. At least, I’m assuming it was Lucy.


Things are indeed scenic and wonderful and natural and fucking near glacier free here. Thanks a bunch, global warming. We saw a fair amount of wildlife on the way up (we are now at about 8,200 feet altitude). Well, I saw wildlife. Everyone else was busy screaming and stuff.

Stupid Tourist Tricks: We saw a guy with a rope tied around his waist that had the other end tied to his car. He did this so that he could lean way over the edge to take pictures of deer way down in the valley. His family cheered him on. Perhaps inevitably, his name was Bubba.

Another pinhead was racing his friend downhill on one of the steepest grades on skateboards. I regret missing their crash a few minutes later, which a fellow uphill driver described as “bloody & bouncy & taking about 300′ to stop”.

Finally, there was the woman who was feeding peanuts to the marmots. After a few minutes, there were about 50 peanut jonesing marmots around her. Then she ran out of peanuts. You’d be surprised how fast a chubby middle aged woman can run when pursued by a seething horde of high altitude rodents.

Yeah, you know, I loves me some rodents (as a snack or a meal), but those fuckers weighed more than I do and there were a shitload of them and they were all batshit crazy for either peanuts or tasty tasty human flesh.

Right now, we are getting ready to finish our drive through the park and then Go on to Cut Bank, where we will spend the night. More bloggage later.

There’s more of that road ahead? Oh, hell no! I’m off to my cupboard!

Destination Sign: Asgard

The Old Hospital Was Full Of Cannibals

…some of them were even alive

CatCon2: The Trip There, Day 1, Part Two

(NOTE: The following is all fictional.)

Well here we are, 23 hours after I woke up to start this journey, in a KOA Kampground just outside Medusa, Utah. Everyone but me is asleep…and I soon will be.

Our drive through Nevada and Utah was punctuated by a few stops to see allegedly interesting tourist sites, such as…

The First Cat Ranch West Of The Mississippi: Which, as it turned out, was the only cat ranch…anywhere. It seems that in the spring of 1867, a couple named Elom and Gussie Hork decided to settle down outside West Carlin, Nevada and “raise fancy cats to sell back East”. To feed the cats, they raised chickens. Unfortunately, the winter of 1867-1868 was pretty harsh and over the course of a month, bears and coyotes got all of the chickens. Deprived of food, the cats got…unruly. In May of 1868, the local sheriff came out to the ranch “cos them two wasn’t right in the head”. He found no trace of the Horks or the cats. The whole guided tour took less than 15 minutes and cost us each $2.00. The little cat sized corrals and cat sized branding irons were kinda cute looking.

Free Brothel Tour: It’s true! You can tour the Love Shack Brothel (remember, prostitution is legal in most of Nevada) in Wells, Nevada for free! I almost got outvoted on this one, especially after I made a wisecrack about free samples to Grace & Sharon. Still, it was a hell of a lot more interesting to tour a cathouse than it was to tour a car ranch.

The Salt Museum: Smack in the middle of the Bonneville Salt Flats of Utah, some goofball built a museum to sodium chloride. Since it was only a buck to get in, we checked it out. To our surprise, it was pretty interesting. Took most of an hour to tour, which means that by the time we were done, we were wicked thirsty. I think I drank 4 glasses of water and a mug of iced tea before we hit Salt Lake City.

After we arrived at Mormon Central, we spent some time at a local dog park, where Lucy struck up a friendship with a rather disreputable looking German Shepherd and Winker basked in the attention she got from a throng of small children.

From there, we drove into the mountains of eastern Utah, stopping for lunch at a barbecue joint that served a pretty fine rack of ribs. About two hours later, we reached the KOA, at which point the “stop driving and lay around being lazy” portion of the day began.

Wildlife Sighted: A golden eagle, 6 deer, several hawks and crows, maybe 15 squirrels and a grey fox.

More fictional trip bloggage tomorrow.