Bucky & Squint Meet Some Dames

…love was in the New Jersey air

CritterCon 11

Trip Day Five (By Sasha)

Hello, Dear Readers. Sasha here with all the trip news of the day. Before we get started, I’m going to answer the question that at least some of you long time readers might have: If it’s Tuesday and we are starting in Yuma Arizona and we need to be in Critter City around noon on Wednesday AND we want to stop and visit at least another dozen places, not counting lunches, HOW ARE WE GOING TO DO IT?

Simple answer: Time travel!

Somewhat more detailed answer: While we were sleeping last night, the Sweetie (the Bus) drove from Yuma to Lordsburg, New Mexico. We woke up there, started our day and stopped when we got to Aunt Pearl’s ranch (it being 1980 here, she’s still alive here and only 75 years old), near Van Horn, Texas. But then, two minutes after we got to Aunt Pearl’s front gate, which is 15 miles from the house. At that point, I gave everybody a Renewal Smoothie (new product from SJC Enterprises) to drink and we went back in time and space to Yuma at the same time we left Lordsburg. We stopped at several roadside attractions, ate Second Lunch, then, just before we got to Lordsburg, Daddy brought us back to Aunt Pearls and the two versions of us merged. Easy peasy!

Anyway, that’s why you’ll see the New Mexico and Texas stops before you see the Arizona stops. It was a fun day.

By now you all know that any meal on the bus rocks, so I won’t go into detail about breakfast, aside from saying that Daddy & Uncle Gabriel had us cracking up with another round of their Rocco and Maxie routine. Those two are some funny ass humans.

Since we hit so many stops today, I’m going to be rather brief describing them all.

New Mexico Stops

1: The Invisible House: Isn’t really invisible, but the outside is really well painted to blend in with the background and you can’t tell there is a house there until you damned near run into it.

2: The Robot Battlefield: This place is big, like, 200 acres big. The “robots” are made out of welded together pieces of junk and scrap metal. They come in a dizzying variety of sizes and shapes, all posed to simulate the aftereffects of a huge battle. You see all of this from a thankfully air conditioned bus. A very earnest young man told us the story of the war and the various areas of battle you see. It was really fun, took an hour and is well worth the $5.00 each we paid. The gift store has cold drinks, which we all partook of.

3: The Mountain Of The Lord: The Giant Jesus here is only 25 feet tall and made of pieces of old car bodies, but the mountain he stands on is a trip and a half. As usual, a guy and his twin brother got a message from God that they were sinners and better get their shit together by coming out here in the middle of the desert and building bunch of shit on a hill for the glory of the LORD! The only thing that differs them from the other religious wackos we’ve seen over the years is that Gordon and Landon Hall are African American. Kinda nice to see that white dudes have not cornered the market.

The mountain (a big hill, really) is covered in 283 scenes from the Bible. They range in quality from pretty well done to rather slapdash. They don’t charge to drive up to see old JC, but they do have a gift shop and they do take “offerings”.

4: Andrade’s General Store: This is just a humongous general store and cafe in the middle of nowhere, but damn, the food is great. They also sell lots of stuff from Mexico, which is why Daddy & Daisy now have so much Dia de Los Muertas stuff and a bunch of luchadore collectibles.

5: Monsters of the Desert #2: This is very much like the one on our world, but much newer and a second location (#1 is in northern Arizona). There are way fewer monsters, but the 7 they have are very well done and mostly from the movies, including giant ants from “Them”, the giant tarantula from “Tarantula” and a giant scorpion from “The Black Scorpion”

Texas Stops

1: Movie Town: This is a famous bunch of sets built for westerns and late 19th century movies. About half of it is Western Town and the other half is 1900 town. Both are still used for movies and television.

2: Big Bob’s Deadly Texas Museum: Big Bob must love murder, because this fair sized museum has exhibits for over 200 sensational Lone Star State homicides. Each one is presented in gory detail and several of our group never even went it. Those of us who did bought t-shirts and cowboy hats, both decorated with fake blood splatters. Mom has forbidden us to wear them in her presence.

Arizona Stops

1: The Thing?: We have this on our Earth, but it is at the other end of the state and a pretty tacky and dusty place. Actually, it’s still tacky & dusty, but the various exhibits are better and in some cases a tad less creepy. The Thing itself is different from our world and, like ours, is hard for most folks to identify. Of the 23 people in our group, 9 of us knew what it was when we saw it. Best of all, since it is 1980 here, admission is only 75 cents.

2: The Airplane House: No, not a passenger jet converted into a house, but THREE 707 jets, one stacked on top of the other two. No engines, but three planes making a surprisingly roomy house. The tour costs $2.00 a pop and the old hippies living there are very nice folks.

3: Miracle Lake: It’s actually more like a big pond, but it’s pretty cool. In 1941, some dude was blasting away hunting for uranium and he cracked open an underground aquifer. The surrounding low area filled with water in less than 24 hours and the overflow created a seasonal creek that runs just over a mile. The lake was low when we were there, but fills to overflowing in the winter and spring. No charge to see it and we bought t-shirts.

4: Giant Elvis: He’s 100 feet tall and stands straddling a little burger joint in the VERY small town of Presley. You can’t go up inside him, but the statue of Elvis in his Vegas Comeback outfit is pretty good. Makes a nice change from a Giant Jesus. Oh, and the burgers & shakes were pretty good, too.

5: The Desert Garden: This is a very nice state owned and operated botanical display. It’s a walking tour. I kitted everyone out with personal cooling units, so as not to see folks from milder temperatured states die. This place is worth seeing.

6: The Mysterious Thing: This world’s Arizona has battling Things at each end. This one is newer, cleaner, less tacky and more creepy. You pay a buck to go in, wander around looking at shit that makes you think “WTF?”, then finally come to the Other Thing, which will make you both laugh and lose faith in humans, if you still have any. The gift shop is nice and sells cold beer, which some of us partook of.

And now we are at Aunt Pearl’s house and all the humans are in twenty something bodies or they won’t look right and we NHT are just ourselves and damn if Aunt Pearl can’t cook up some great grub.

I’m signing off here, folks. Tomorrow we will be at the con around noon.

Buenas noches, amigos!

Sasha

 

Destination Sign When We Started: Altair 4
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Toontown

QM Radio Station: PolkaPunk!

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This Time, We Send The Short Guy In First

…he’ll be harder to hit

CritterCon 11

Trip Day Four (By Leon)

(Note from Daisy: This entry is short because this dumb cat kept napping and getting distracted and shit.)

Hi there! Leon here with our day four report, which will be kind of quick and dirty and a little late because I was busy doing some important stuff today. Anyway, here goes.

(Daisy: Important stuff? You took 16 naps!)

Breakfast: Great, as always. It was full on English this morning, and I hit the kippers hard.

Stop #1: The Mail Box House. Looks like a giant version of the kind of mailbox you see on country roads. Looks like a regular house inside. Oh, yeah, their mailbox looks like a house. What comedians these humans are!

(Sasha: Not the most interesting strange house.)

En route gaming: Played some Melee and Wizard with Max, Uncle Doc, Sasha, Uncle Spike, Uncle Gabriel, Goldie, my Mom (Avis) and Uncle Peter. We used a big map and had 12 wandering monsters. Uncle Peter and Max survived.

Stop #2: Another Giant Jesus. 80 feet tall, not kept up very well. Uncle Doc was not amused.

(Sadie: He looked pissed off.)

Stop #3: Packards Used Books, which for most of these guys should have said Packards Dead Tree Crack Cocaine. They spent two hours there and spent way too much money on books, music, games and who knows what else. And this while they are traveling in a Bus that has a Library with EVERY FUCKING BOOK EVER PRINTED. They’re all sick in the head.

(Daisy: Maybe you ought to try reading a book instead of sleeping on them, Cat Head.)

Stop #4: The World Famous UFO Crash Site. This place is way the fuck back in the boonies and took us 45 minutes to get to from the freeway. It has only recently been opened to the public and most of what you see is fake, but a real no shit UFO did crash here in 1950 and local folks came and took pix and stuff for about an hour before the military arrived. The government could only cover it up a bit after that, so everyone knew it had happened. And then, before they could crack open the damned thing or even load it on a truck, it just melted away. We were here for 45 hot minutes because it was 93 degrees outside.

(Sasha: It was Teollarin. Probably done as a joke.)

Lunch and en route gaming: We had lunch on the bus (hotdogs & stuff) and then played several games. I won at Dominion.

Stop #5: Another damned Giant Jesus! At least this one was very well maintained and 120 feet tall. If you guessed that Uncle Doc was pleased, you win.

En route activity: We NHT went and played in the Shoe Room. Don’t know what the humans did.

Stop #6: Biosphere 2. Unlike on our Earth, where the Biosphere 2 was a failure or a scam or whatever, this one was a big success and help scientists learn a whole lot about going to Mars and stuff. It’s a big place and only open to the public between missions. The rest of the time, it’s locked up tighter that a clam. Pretty fun to visit.

After this, we had about an hour to go to get to the Arizona border, so Uncle Doc did the shrinky thing and we made it in 32 minutes. Might have caused a couple of minor accidents, too.

(Janet: At least he asked Grace for permission first this time.)


So now, we are east of Yuma and everyone is going to bed. Uncle Doc said we need to make up some miles and time, so the Bus will drive to out first stop while we sleep.

Thanks for reading. Pet a cat today!

Leon


Destination Sign When We Started: Alderaan
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Central City

QM Radio Station: Rock & Roleplaying

Module Q-2: Lair Of The Rare Were-Bear

…for 6 to 10 adventurers of level 8-10

 

CritterCon 11

Trip Day Two (By Luke)

Hi there! Luke here, with your Day Two report, and what a day it was.

We all got up around 7 this morning and had a truly legendary breakfast provided by our KitchenBots, Julia, Jacques and Alton. No matter what species you are, the kitchen staff makes sure you have plenty to choose from. Misty and I had steak & kidney pie and some scrambled eggs.

After breakfast, Dad told us we had about an hour before we got to our first stop, so while the humans sat around drinking tea or coffee and chatting, we critters hit the Slide Room. Now that the room is about 4 times larger than before, there are long stretches where you can hit 75 miles an hour! There are also double helix loop de loops that will seriously test your ability to hold down the great breakfast you just had.

(Silky: Next time, let’s wait a couple of hours.)

(Janet: Or we could just go play in the Shoe Room.)

45 minutes of sliding was enough for everybody, so we went to join the humans to find out what Dad had chosen for our first stop.

That stop turned out to be The World Famous (you saw that one coming, right?) House of Doors.

(Leon: Well, at least it wasn’t the House Of Human Heads or Petrified Turds or some other crazy stuff.)

Yes, it’s a big Victorian house up on a hill just past the top of the Grapevine (that’s what they call Interstate 5 as it comes up over the mountains into the Los Angeles basin) and it is indeed constructed completely out of doors. Front doors, garage doors, interior doors, barn doors, security doors, sliding glass doors and even doggie doors. It looks goofy from the outside, but inside, it’s a pretty ordinary house. That was kind of a letdown, but you still had to admire the ingenuity of Rex Hollister, the guy who built the place back in 1966.

(Daisy: Why don’t these nutty humans build hospitals or orphanages instead of screwy houses?)


Once we were done buying the requisite bumper stickers and such, we all piled back into the Bus and headed into that strange and bizarre land known as Greater Los Angeles. We were about 90 minutes from our next stop, so Dad put on a movie from this Earth. It was “Monster X” (1948 RKO) and starred Boris Karloff as the good guy and Lon Chaney Jr as the deranged madman who gets infected by an ancient fungus and grows into a 15 foot tall monster that ravages Los Angeles. It ran 85 minutes and wasn’t a bad movie.

(Misty: I just love old monster movies!)

In a rather rare departure from Dad’s usual strange taste in roadside attractions, our second stop was the Museum of Television Costumes in Burbank. After paying the reasonable rate of five bucks per, we all went in and saw a ton of costumes. Most were pretty ordinary suits and dresses from the late 1940s to the present, but there were plenty of costumes from sci fi and fantasy shows, along with stuff from westerns and medical shows and other genre TV. We spent about an hour there.

Next up was a stop just 10 minutes away and it was another Giant Jesus. However, this Giant Jesus was strictly from Hollywood because he was all dressed up like some studio PR weasel. White suit, big smile, sunglasses and well styled hair, he could not have been more SoCal unless he had a surfboard.

(Silky: I thought Daddy would start crying when he saw it.)


The statue is 100 feet tall and very well built. An elevator can take 10 people up into the head to get a really great view of Griffith Park. Dad was very impressed and left a 20 buck donation on the way out. He even bought a little dashboard version of that Jesus and put it on the dashboard next to Mr. Spock and the 3rd Doctor.

(Max: That is high praise from Mister C.)

We didn’t drive too far when Dad stopped at Red and Ed’s BBQ Burger Joint. We got in just before the lunch rush and had some great burgers, fries and shakes.

(Goldie: Say what you will about humans, but dang, can they cook up great food!)

(Sasha: Dude, wait until we hit a Texas BBQ joint.)

As we were leaving, I’m pretty sure we boggled several people who saw 23 humans (all of us NHT were in human bodies) climb into a small ice cream truck.

(Penny: One lady dropped her milkshake.)

Our next stop was all the way out in Long Beach and since it was almost one o’clock, we needed to get out there ASAP. As usual, the combined minds of Dad, Sasha and our quantum mechanic, Joe, came up with the answer.

By now, most of you have at least seen the trailer for “Ant Man and The Wasp”, so you probably have an idea what happened next. Dad pulled a stickshift looking lever back and suddenly, the Bus was the size of a shoe box and rocketing along at 90 miles an hour. Thankfully, Mom did not find this out until we got to our destination. When she did find out the answer to “how did we get here so fast?” she was not amused.

(Sadie: “Not amused” is British level understatement.)

(Sasha: Yeah, she ripped us new asses.)


Our Long Beach destination was a real mind blower: Uncle Ferdy’s Trained Squirrel Review! Yes, folks, this Earth has an Uncle Ferdy and the show is even better than the one in our world. We all paid ten bucks and watched some really talented squirrels, as well as some chipmunks, prairie dogs and groundhogs, do their thing. There was acrobatics, dancing and all sorts of comedy. It was a great show and there were no critter related incidents because we were all in human bodies and had instinct suppressors turned on.

(Daisy: Even with suppressors on, some of us were twitching.)

(Leon: I may have a permanent facial tic.)


The show was an hour long and apparently only takes place Monday-Saturday, three times a day. When it was all over, several of us got Uncle Ferdy’s autograph.

We got back on the road a bit after 3 and headed off to our last stop, The World Famous Serpent Park near Laguna Beach. It was almost 4 when we got there and, oddly enough, not everyone wanted to go into a huge building full of snakes. Leon, Penny, Roxie, Silky (who died from snakebite once), Mom, Max and Auntie Mary, Auntie Holly and Misty all stayed on the bus. The rest of us ponied up our $7.50 and went into a nightmare.

(Leon: No goddamn way was I going in there!)

(Penny: Nope, nope, nope!)

(Max: Prey animal here, yo. Fuck them snakes!)


Well, a nightmare for some of us. I mean, folks, there were a whole lot of snakes in there, including a species of python we don’t have on our Earth, which is damned good because it was 33 feet long!

(Sasha: HA! I’ve created bigger snakes than that!)

(Daisy: You have? What the hell is wrong with you?)

(Sasha: Was the term “mad scientist” never fully explained to you?)

I nearly pooped myself when I saw it. The pit full of cobras didn’t help anybody’s nerves, either. Ditto the pit full of rattlesnakes or the glass walled hallway that let you walk under a pond containing at least 4 big anacondas. We were in there for an hour and everyone, even Dad, was glad when we left.

(Goldie: I will probably piss myself the next time I see a garden hose out of the corner of my eye.)


After leaving Snake Nightmare Land, we drove on down to San Clemente where we parked the Bus, now looking like an old beater Chevy Nova. Dinner tonight was Italian and as delicious as it always is. We just finished a couple of hours of boardgames and now everyone is drinking and chatting or heading to the Shoe Room.

More reportage from somebody else tomorrow.

Here’s looking at you, kid.

Luke


Destination Sign When We Started: The Land Of The Giants
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Baskerville Hall

QM Radio Station: Girl Group Radio

We Have Love Biscuits!

…made with extra love, seasoned with lust

 

CritterCon 11

Trip Day One (by Daisy)

Hi, folks! Daisy here with our Day One trip report.

Daddy woke us all up at 6 this morning and Jeeves served up some great BREAKFASSSTTT FOOORRR DOGGGSSS! And cats, rabbits and skunks. We all chowed down and then found comfy spots for a little nap.

(Silky: In a living room with never fewer than six long sofas, it’s easy to find a comfy spot.)

(Goldie: This bus is insane, but also the most dog friendly place I’ve ever seen.)


The humans got up about 6:30, just as we were leaving South Sacramento headed toward Elk Grove. It’s pretty strange to look out the window and see all the houses spaced so far apart, but it’s also kind of nice. Businesses and stuff all seem to be in large shopping centers or malls. Same goes for any sort of industrial stuff.

Anyway, our first stop of the day was actually just south of Elk Grove and a few miles off the highway. It was the World Famous (because humans just love to use that term) Dice Museum. If you think for half a second that Daddy, Uncle Spike, Uncle Peter, Uncle Brian and Uncle Gabriel were gonna pass this up, you’re nuts. Fortunately, it opens at 7:00 in the morning for some reason, otherwise they might have broken into it.

(Sasha: Oh, I don’t think anybody but Daddy would have actually broken in.)

(Sadie: True. The others would have just waited for him to come open the door.)

(Roxie: Humans are strange animals.)

Now, I’m a gamer and own a few hundred dice, but this place was just crazy. The two dudes that own it, Rich and Tony, have 275,000 dice! Yes, you read that right, over a quarter million dice. The museum is in an old warehouse and has three levels. There are all sorts of plaques and stuff telling the history of dice and dice games and stuff. It was hella interesting and we spent two hours there. I think the only reason we left is because Mom and Auntie Mary started tapping their feet and folding their arms and giving Daddy & Uncle Spike the stink eye. Before we left, we bought t-shirts and bumper stickers and fridge magnets and yes, dice. Heroin got nothing on dice addiction.

(Misty: I must remember that foot tapping thing when Luke gets all absorbed in chatting up another fan of old musicals.)

Daddy put the Bus on autopilot and we all lounged around the living room talking about dice and games and how cool it was that everything was at 1980 prices.

(Leon: Cat food is like, less than half the price it is in 2018!)


About 45 minutes later, just south of Stockton, we stopped at our next roadside attraction, a Giant Jesus. Those of you who have read previous con reports know that Daddy loves checking out giant sized Son of God statues, especially if you can go up inside them. Auntie Mary is nearly as bad.

(Sasha: It’s some mental illness.)

(Luke: Says the dog who has never met a classic car show she didn’t stop at.)

(Silky: Or a dogpunk band whose album/cassette/cd she didn’t buy.)

(Sasha: You two suck.)


So I need to explain that on this Earth, in this United States, religion is not nearly as popular as it is on our world. Also, they tax churches if they make over a certain amount. For some reason, the tax code taxes “religious statues and historical monuments” at a much lower rate, so the churches put up these bigass statues or they try to get things and places recognized as historical monuments. All of them ask for donations for “upkeep” because they cannot charge for admission. And, of course, they have gift shops.

(Leon: Gift shop owners weep with joy when they see Uncle Doc coming.)

So this particular Jesus is about 70 feet tall and in excellent repair. He’s pretty realistic looking, too. Only 4 humans at a time can stand in his head, but only Daddy & Auntie Mary went up. The rest of us actually spent most of our time looking at a herd of cows that some cowboys were driving across the highway. When the two of them came down, they agreed that it was a good Giant Jesus, but not a great one.

(Max: Probably a good thing that Mr. C has no grandkids, or the poor little tykes would have to listen to him tell endless stories about Giant Jesus statues.)

When we got back on the Bus, those of us who are NHT went to the Game Room to play assorted games. The humans spent the next half hour chatting.

(Janet: I really enjoyed playing Dixit.)

(Penny: Yes, that was fun. So was Kill Doctor Lucky.)


Our third stop, at around 11:00, was in Modesto at the Old Toy Museum. Apparently, it’s not World Famous. The humans all really loved this place, with the words “I used to have this!” being repeated dozens of times. There are a whole lot of toys at that place, so if you are a human and ever get over to Earth 1-G, you ought to check it out. Personally, aside from the Star Trek stuff, I was not impressed. No rubber bones, no squeaky toys, not even a tennis ball!

(Silky: I opted to take a nap instead.)

After spending 90 minutes looking at old toys, everybody was hungry. We went to a place called Mama Marie’s Pizza and damn was that some excellent chow! We all got on the Bus almost an hour later with full bellies. Napping ensued.

(Leon: We may have answered the question “Can you eat too much pizza”.)


We actually got to our next stop an hour later, but Daddy let everyone sleep for another half hour before waking us up to see World Famous Skeleton Town in Chowchilla. Yes, it is exactly as the name says, an Old West town populated by skeletons posed in ordinary ways. Skeletons at the saloon, skeletons at the church, skeletons at the general store and jail and livery stable ans school and walking on the street! Human skeletons, horse skeletons, cow skeletons, dog, cat and bird skeletons. Skeletons of all sizes.

(Misty: I am now totally convinced that The Doctor possesses the mad ability to find the strangest roadside attractions.)

(Sasha: Oh, girlfriend, that one was nothing. The Serial Killer Museum and that goddamn Zombie Toontown or whatever they called it, were WAY creepier.)

(Sasha: Also, stop calling him “The Doctor”. You just feed his ego.)

(Misty: Sorry mate, but I’m an English bitch and when I meet an eccentric bloke named Doc who owns a TARDIS, he’s The Doctor to me.)


Now, dear reader, nobody likes a bone better than me, but this place was a fuckin’ creepfest! Okay, not as bad as the serial killer museum we once visited, but not far behind. Just to add to the creepiness, the family that runs the place is cheery and wholesome and now that I think of it, that makes them creepy, too. We spent 30 minutes there and I’ll probably have nightmares tonight.

(Goldie: I had a nightmare that bones wanted to eat me!)

After Creepfest 1980, we drove almost straight through to Bakersfield. I say almost because we stopped to check out another Giant Jesus, but it was only 25 feet tall and you couldn’t go inside it and it was kind of run down. Daddy was pretty disappointed.

(Luke: The rest of us, not so much.)


Right now we are all on the Bus, which looks like a Ford Econoline van and is parked in a Motel 6 parking lot. The kitchen bots are cooking up a feast and then we are all going to watch some local tv and old movies. Tomorrow, we resume our journey.

Live long and prosper,

Daisy

Destination Sign When We Started: The Mountains of Madness
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Cucamonga

Mr. Porkwaffle Tries To Climb A Tree

…with very humorous results

 

CritterCon 10

Day Two

So last night, after watching two movies from Earth 1-D (Fall of a Jedi Knight: A Star Wars Story and Tarzan and the Jewels of Opar), most of us sat around talking until just after one in the morning. This explains why we all slept in until about 8 this morning and didn’t finish breakfast until 10.

(Silky: I crashed about 11:30. I’m getting too old for staying up late.)

(Sasha: I had to go check on some experiments and damned if I didn’t fall asleep in the lab.)

We had been north of Santa Cruz and only had to drive about three miles to the Hippie Museum, which, while not advertised as World Famous, damn well should be. Also, there is no force on Earth that could have kept Spike and Mary out of there.

(Daisy: I can’t think of a better roadside attraction for Auntie Mary & Uncle Spike. Or Silky and Daddy, for that matter.)


The entry fee to this hippie owned and operated establishment is either whatever cash you want to donate or canned food for the local food bank. Since our pantry is roughly the size of a WalMart, we donated a literal ton of food. Not only did this get us into the museum, it got us free t-shirts, free bumper stickers and hugs from the staff.

(Roxy: I thought those people were gonna poop!)

(Leon: They offered Uncle Doc & Uncle Spike some weed, too.)

The museum is chock full of photos, film, videos, writings, posters, clothing and other memorabilia of the late 60s to mid 70s. It was a real blast from the past, even for our younger members.

(Max: Man, I thought humans dressed strangely nowadays, but that’s nothing compared to the hippie attire.)

We spent over two hours there, and liked it so much we gave them another ton of food and bought a bunch more t-shirts and 9 bandanas.

(Leon: One of the ladies tried to give Uncle Doc a plate full of brownies, but he begged off citing a mass diet.)

Santa Cruz being what it is, our next stop was a mere mile away and the Human Roadside Zoo. Part theater, part fundraiser, this is another place that asks only for donations. When we got out of the bus, we saw several right wing groups protesting the place, so we knew we were going to like it, being a big old bus load of liberals. Confrontation was inevitable, I suppose.

(Daisy: Oh, Daddy, you live for shit like this.)

It seems the righties didn’t like how some of their ilk were being portrayed inside. They also didn’t like the big security guards inside, so that’s why the 15 or so of them were out on the sidewalk.

(Silky: So much for the courage of their convictions.)
(Leon: I’d say most of them had convictions for DUI.)

One dickhead in a MAGA hat and NRA t-shirt tried to stand in Grace’s way. This did not sit well with Daisy and when they guy started yelling at Grace about “UnAmerican Liberals”, Daisy told him to shut the fuck up and get out of the way. He turned toward her and poked her in the chest with his finger. He managed to get the words “Listen, little girl” out before 5’2” Daisy jumped up and kicked him square in the face, stretching him out on the pavement. Some woman, probably his wife, came at Daisy from behind and got an elbow in her plentiful stomach before getting slapped about 6 times.

(Roxy: Daisy is my hero!)

(Daisy: Do NOT mess with me or my family.)

Some young guy in neo-nazi attire looked like he might be going for a gun, so I sorta punched him in the throat. Twice. Turns out he was just going for a cell phone, probably to record the nasty old antifa hippies. My bad. I tossed his phone under the tire of a truck driving by.

(Sasha: You just know Daddy wanted to curbstomp that asshole, but the cops were coming.)

To avoid explaining things to the cops, Sasha neuralized the righties to start fighting each other. I reckon all of them got arrested.

(Sasha: Yeah, and I had every one of them assault a cop, too, for extra charges.)


The Human Zoo itself was interesting, with all of the stereotypes represented. You could see how the Trumpistas would have not liked many of them. We donated $50.00 as we were leaving. Outside, all the cops & protesters were gone.

By now it was after 1:30, so we all chowed down at a hotdog place, then wandered around downtown Santa Cruz for about an hour. Around 3:30, we got on the bus and drove about 10 miles to the Giant Jesus of The Coast.

(Luke: Dad was so excited!)

(Silky: Auntie Mary was pretty excited, too. I think Dad has got her hooked on Giant Jesuses.)

On the D. Cross Giant Jesus Rating Scale, this one rated as follows.

Size: 3 It was about 80 feet tall.

Climbability: 3, since you could only go up an outside stairway to a small deck encircling his waist.

Appearance: 8 Very lifelike looking, but with a bit of paint chipping due to the salt air.

Pose: 5 Pretty much your standard arms outspread to embrace the faithful pose

(Luke: I think Dad would faint if he found a Giant Jesus playing air guitar.)

Religiosity: 10 There was a small bible store at the base and about a dozen religious folks milling about there and up on the deck, ready to save souls.

All told, not a bad Giant Jesus, but not the best by along shot.

(Max: But he still took 35 pictures of it.)

It now being near 5 pm, we decided to take the bus to a campground down by Castroville, where we had a fine dinner prepared by Julia, then rested a bit before going to the Slide Room and trying out the new Slide Racing option. It was big fun, but after about an hour, everyone was pretty much tuckered out.

(Daisy: You’d be surprised how tied you get sliding around on your ass in the water at speeds up to 75 mph.)

So now it’s 11:00 and I’m heading to bed. More trip reportage tomorrow.

 

Destination Sign When We Started: Westeros
Destination Sign When We Stopped: Toad Hall

QM Radio Station: Alt. Country Meets Alt. Rock

Only One Way Out Of This Town

…until we got really creative, that is.

Life On The Magic Bus

Chapter 3: The Games Are Afoot!

Geeks gather

Winker goes up a level

4/20/2009

Destination Sign: Space…The Final Frontier

(Narrator: Hello, I’m back to tell you the story in this short chapter.)

Upon arriving in Seattle, Doc parked the bus in the parking lot of a strip mall destined for destruction in about a month. He and Grace had called all of their Seattle based friends, plus Spike & Mary, and invited them to an “absolutely first class dinner and night of gaming”. Pets were invited and would be getting their own gourmet meal.

Doc & Grace, both accomplished cooks and aided by the SmartBots known as Alton & Julia, cooked up a wonderful 9 course dinner for the humans and several tasty dishes suitable for a wide range of critters. This included three large rats for their friend Ollie’s reticulated python, Indy and a reserved dining area in the meadow room for all of the bunnies belonging to their friends Chris, Nicole & Kate.

At 6:00, as people arrived, the Clay family would greet them, help them get used to talking dogs and the big on the inside bus, then seat them in the living room where the two SmartBots known as Fry & Laurie served them drinks.

When Spike & Mary arrived (sans their teenaged daughters, Melody and Harmony, who were at home), the first words out of Spike’s mouth were, “So, this bus is basically a TAR…”

“HEY now, Uncle Spike,” Winker interrupted, “Stop right there. That satire disclaimer Dad puts up only gets us so far. Ixnay on the trademarked amesnay.”

Spike nodded agreement. “Right, right. But please tell me it makes the same sound when it disappears.”

“Yep,” the old dog said. “Pretty much exactly.”

Once everyone arrived, Doc & Grace took them on the grand tour. In the greenhouse room, the sight of the two suns caused everyone to need a sit down. Later, grace would remark that it was the first time in nearly 30 years that Doc & Spike were both rendered speechless at the same time. Mary marked it down on her calendar.

Before dinner, all of the critters were lead to the Meadow Room, which had been divided off into areas for dogs, cats, rodents, parrots and, of course, Indy. They were served beef stew, fish, hay, fruits & nuts and rats. After that, there was mostly laying around talking.

The humans sat at a big U shaped table that seated all 30 of them. They were served by Fry, Laurie, Abbott & Costello.

(Narrator: Doc named all of the SmartBots, in case you hadn’t figured that out.)

After a leisurely dinner that everyone agreed was one of the best they ever had, the humans retreated to the Game Room. There, they played board and card games for the next four hours, including a miniature wargame that used tiny robots that actually fought it out on the tiny, yet very realistic, terrain. Several of the wargamers present lusted over that game.

After the gaming, there was sitting around talking about everything from the game business to talking dogs to superheroes to raising teenagers. Everybody pretty much agreed that talking dogs would be preferable to teenagers as housemates.

Meanwhile, in the Meadow Room, things were getting interesting. After about an hour of resting, Winker said something to the door, which then opened into a direct portal to the Shoe Room. After all the other dogs were in there, Winker told the cats that a portal would open to a room they would love, the newly created just for this night Empty Box Room.

Later, the 7 cats in attendance that night would proclaim the Empty Box Room as the BEST ROOM EVER and confer upon Winker the status of Honorary Cat, something she said she would be proud of to her dying day.

In the Shoe Room, a wild shoe based version of what critters call “The Crazy Game” broke out. After three fast paced hours, there was still no winner, so everyone went back to the meadow room to nap and discuss the odd habits of humans.

Once all the guests were gone, the Clay family agreed that this little party had been a total winner. Then they all used their various bathrooms and went to bed.

Let’s review: This is a work of fiction, with no rights claimed on any character, process, thing, critter, foodstuff, game, movie or any other damned thing. Well, except for the stuff we created, mostly by pulling ideas out of our ass. Creativity is a funny thing, ya know? Anyway, any resemblance to people or things living, dead, undead or in some state of quantum flux is done solely for humorous & satirical intent. Thank you for reading this.

Chapter 4, Part 1: On The Trail Of Giant Jesus

Sasha meets a bear

Grace meets Sweet Jesus

4/24/2009

Destination Sign: The Hundred Acre Wood

In the world of roadside attractions, giant statues of Jesus are second in number only to houses built out of weird stuff like beer bottles, tin cans and old cars. Doc has heard that there is at least one giant Jesus in every state and, like a birdwatcher, he keeps a notebook detailing his sightings. So far, he has seen 15 giant Sons of God in 11 states. He’s looking to add a couple more on the way to San Diego.

About 2 miles south of the Canadian border, Doc turned the bus around and started back south, but only went a mile before coming to the first of the day’s stops, the Internationally Famous Can-Am Giant Jesus.

(Narrator: Is Internationally Famous better than World Famous? Damned if I know.)

Getting off the bus, Sasha was the first to speak.

“Dang, that’s a big statue. Was this guy Jesus really that tall?”

“No,” Grace told her. “He was probably shorter than me. And darker skinned, too.”

Sasha thought for a minute, then asked, “Do you mean like Uncle Louie’s cousin Jesus? He’s a nice guy who likes to pet my ears.”

“Yeah,” Grace said. “He would have looked kind of like him, only not Mexican. Jesus was from the Middle East.”

Lucy chimed in, “If you ask me, this Jesus dude looked a heck of a lot like Uncle Spike.”

Grace nodded. “Yes, he does, doesn’t he?”

Doc walked up to the plaque on the ground in front of Giant Jesus. He read it aloud to the others and a few more tourists who had just shown up.

“The Church of Jesus Our Savior dedicates this statue to the people of Canada & the United States in the hope that they can live in peace and harmony and dedicate themselves to living as the Son of God taught. June 25th, 1987”

“Well,” he said, “we humans pretty much blew that one. On the other hand, we do have the 7th tallest Giant Jesus in North America right here. 80 feet tall. Too bad you can’t go up inside him and look out his eyes, like some of the others.”

After taking several photographs and buying the requisite tourist items, they got back on the bus and headed toward the coast. A few hours later, after a quick stop to view a herd of world famous black deer, the bus reached Olympic National Park, where the Clay family joined about 30 other humans & dogs on a self guided tour. Later, Doc would write this about it.

“So there we are, way the hell out on a trail and there I am, at the head of the group of maybe 32 people and several mostly small dogs, cos I’m Nature Boy and I just sorta slid into the guide position on this unguided hike. Everything was going fine until the bear stepped outta the bushes about 60 feet in front of us.

At that point, everyone pretty much froze, bear included…except for Sasha. See, she’s a very friendly little gal. Loves people, cats, other dogs, livestock…you name it, she’ll give it a chance to be her friend.

Including a young female black bear, who I’d say weighed about 300-400 pounds.

So, I’m holding Sasha’s leash and she’s straining on it to say “Hi” to the bear and I can hear people behind me backing up the trail and Grace whispering “Doc! Come on!” and the bear is just standing there looking at us like “What’s up?” Oddly, none of the other dogs were barking, not even Lucy, who later told us that squirrels and rabbits are one thing, but a bigass bear is totally another.

Anyway, the bear stared at us, we stared at her and everyone else backed up another 3-4 yards. Then Sasha barked, the bear yelled, I yelled, everyone behind me yelled and they all started running…and then the bear hauled ass down the hill.

I looked at Sasha, who was still barking her “Let’s play wrassle!” bark, then looked at the rapidly receding ass of the bear, then back to Sasha. She stopped barking and said “She must have had a previous appointment.” Then I turned around and lead her back up the trail, which she was ok with because it was nearing lunch time anyway.

When I caught up with the rest of the hikers, the only thing I could think to say was “She’ll be upset with me all day because I didn’t let her kill that bear”. Oddly, nobody but Sasha and I found that funny.”

After lunch back on the bus, during which Doc & Sasha heard the rather unkind opinions of Grace, Winker & Lucy on “The Bear Episode”, they proceeded along to the town of Iwalco, Washington. They had planned on just stopping to get some fresh air and stretch their legs, but then they saw a sign in the local chocolate shop that said “Come in and see our Sweet Jesus”. How could they resist?

Leaving The Girls in the bus to play World of Dogcraft, Doc & Grace strolled over to see what Sweet Jesus was made of.

As it turned out, he was made of a dark chocolate mixed with cherries. He stood about seven feet tall and had his open arms outstretched. Doc posed with him first, then Grace did. Ten minutes later, they were back on the bus, Grace was looking sheepish and Doc was laughing loudly.

Winker looked at her parents, then asked, “She snapped, didn’t she, Dad?”

Doc was laughing too hard to speak, but nodded.

“He was..so delicious smelling…all dark chocolate & cherries…I…I couldn’t help myself.” Grace looked embarrassed as she wiped chocolate off her chin.

“She…she…Hahahaha…bit off two of his fingers! HAHAHAHA! The shop owner looked like she was going to have…hahahaha…have…heeheehee…a heart attack. I…heeheehee…had to pay $300 to get us out of there.” Doc collapsed onto a sofa and laughed hysterically. Lucy & Sasha joined in.

Winker looked at Grace with sympathy in her eyes. “Well, Mom, now you know how it was for 2 year old me back when I ate that plate of hot dogs.”

Grace went off to the bedroom and didn’t come out for an hour. Doc stopped laughing after 15 minutes and got the bus back on the road. The Girls went back to playing World of Dogcraft.

Chapter 4, Part 2: On The Trail Of Giant Jesus

Doc writes!

A tale of two houses

4/25/2009

Destination Sign: Barsoom


The World Famous Circular House and the World Famous Long House

Exclusive to Roadside Attractions Quarterly by Doc Clay. Photos by Grace Clay

Located halfway between Iwalco and Chinook along Highway 101, these two interesting houses are only about a mile apart on the eastern side of the road. You can’t miss the two big signs.

We went into the Circular House first. It is the older of the two by five years, having been built in 1968 by Milton Zonga with the admitted dual purpose of being a place to live and an income generating curiosity. It is both of those, although Mr. Zonga and his wife Rose live in Arizona now and the house is home to his grandson, Julius and his family. Our tour was guided by his wife, Kerry, who did a good, if uninspired job.

The circular house is just that, a large 4 bedroom 3 bath house built as a circle with one long hallway running around the inside edge of the circle. It is done in pretty much the exterior style of any suburban stucco house and most of the interior, aside from the entry hall/gift shop/museum looks pretty much like your own home might, only with curved walls and some great ocean views. The small museum itself has many photos and newspaper & magazine articles about the house, from planning right up to today.

The most interesting thing about the Circular House is the lust tropical garden around the pool in the center. This area is roofed over to form a greenhouse. There are tropical birds flying about and even about six squirrel monkeys in the trees. It’s really quite cool looking.

The array of souvenir items is pretty large, but prices are a bit high.

I give this attraction a solid C+

Address: 100 Circle Drive

Hours: 10:00 am to 3:00 pm, Mon., Wed., Sat., Sun. Closed on Christmas, New Years and Easter.

The World Famous Long House is just about the total opposite of the Circular House. For starters, it is long. As in 24 feet wide, 14 feet high (interior) and 200 feet long! The whole place is a very well made log cabin and blends in well with the surrounding forest. There are five bedrooms, three baths, a huge living room and a bunch of other rooms. Two of the bedrooms are for rent, as the place is also a B&B.

This house was built starting in 1973 by Homer and Helen Zonga, Homer being Milton’s younger brother. The house was not finished until 1979. The small separate museum/gift shop tells the whole story with photos, videos and plenty of newspaper & magazine articles.

The tour of the house is given by Homer and Helen themselves, with assistance from their twin grandsons, Bill and Ben. Homer is a real character and if their are no children or easily offended folks in the tour group, his descriptions of the troubles encountered building the house can get quite colorful.

Perhaps the coolest thing about the Long House is that every room is done up in a different style. There is the kitchen done up as an old school diner, the bedroom that looks like a cave and rooms straight out of the Old West, a science fiction movie, a castle and many more.

This place is well worth visiting and the souvenir items are reasonably priced.

Address: 1 Long Drive

Hours: 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, Tuesday thru Sunday. Closed on Mondays, Christmas, New Years, Easter and the Fourth of July.

The Journal Of Applied Applications

…about appliances

Dog Con 7

 

Day 5: In which we see more (teddy) bears, Flash goes flying and we visit the Giant Jesus of the North

3:30 pm

Today was fun, starting at around 10:30 when Sasha woke Flash and Leon out of a deep sleep by yelling “BEARS!” There was much laughing on the part of the other critters and maybe some humans. I did make Sasha clean up the boys poop.

(Flash: Fuck you guys! That was just not right!)

(Leon: I was dreaming about bears! I almost had a heart attack!)

(Daisy: The best part was when they both ran headfirst into that SmartBot.)

(Lulu: And it teleported them into the Meadow Room. Heeheehee.)

(Sasha: That was payback for the time you two wankers told me the cold fusion plant was heating up.)

Our first stop did involve bears, but of the teddy nature, not the cat devouring type. It was the World Famous Canadian Teddy Bear Museum and yep, it’s full of teddy bears.

250,000 of them.

There are teeny tiny bears, very old bears, humongous big bears (9+ meters tall!), ordinary bears, strange bears…pretty much every kind of teddy bear you can imagine, plus many more you can’t imagine (Vulcan & Klingon bears, Lovecraftian bears). The displays are very nice and you can pose with many of the larger bears. Brian, Lauren, Mary and I all posed with our heads inside various bear mouths. Avis posed with a James Bond bear. Daisy posed with all 13 Doctor bears and all of the Trek bears.

We bought t-shirts, bumper stickers, fridge magnets, the Teddy Bear Museum book and, yes, teddy bears.

After that stop, we ate lunch next to a beaver pond.

(Leon: OK, so they aren’t giant prehistoric mice.)

(Flash: They looked tasty, but man, those teeth.)

(Silky: I wish I could swim that well.)

After lunch, we traveled for a couple of hours, letting the bus drive itself. Most of us spent the time reading magazines from alternate Earths that we found in the Warehouse. The issues of Time and Newsweek were pretty fascinating, especially the ones about the Zombie Wars and the mass human die off (caused by comet dust) and the Beatles reunion in 1976.

Around about 2:00, the critters all went off to the Shoe Room to play. At some point, Flash got the bright idea to leap off a big pile of shoes onto a very large sneaker and then surf to the bottom of the pile. Unfortunately, about halfway down, the toe of the sneaker hit a buried boot and Flash went flying through the air. Just before he would have smacked headfirst into into the door, Grace opened it to ask if they wanted to come over to the Forest Room to see some deer.

Flash flew over her head, across the hall, through the Forest Room door and right onto the back of a big old buck. They both went racing off into the forest at high speed. About ten minutes later, Flash came staggering back, saying “Whoa! That was SO cool!”. He then went to the living room for a nap

(Daisy: Jazz, you might want to rethink the whole having kittens thing.)

(Sadie: Maybe Sasha & Joe can build you some robot kittens.)

We are now in the far north of British Columbia and only minutes from the Giant Jesus of the North, which we CAN ALREADY SEE! That sucker must be huge. More blogging later.

5:00 pm

We are stopped for the night in the town of Gruntly. Not a very large town, but the campground is very nice.

The Giant Jesus of the North was indeed huge. 300 feet tall and perched on top of a tall hill, you can see it from ten or more miles away. It was build and is maintained by the First Church Of Our Lord Jesus In Canada, the founder of which is a multimillionaire.

Old J is made of concrete, steel, marble and glass. He stands with his arms outstretched, as most giant Jesuses do. Thankfully, there are elevators that take you up to his head, from which you get an incredible view. The inside of the head is also just chock full of scripture and stuff.

Down at the inevitable gift shop, we bought the usual suspects. We did pass up the Deluxe Giant Jesus Bibles.

Right now, we’re getting ready to start dinner (TACOS!) and then have a night of alternate world television. Around 2:00 am, the bus will leave Gruntly and head north toward the Yukon and then Alaska.

Destination Sign when we started: Castle Dracula


Destination Sign when we stopped: The Vulgar Unicorn

Music: 1968: Music from the first Summer of Love