Wednesday, February 28, 2007

The Infinite Monkey Theory Revisited Part One

The idea of creating an infinite number of monkeys, I think the Bonobo would be the best choice because it does not have fat fingers and would not fat finger the keyboard, but it is not my place to choose, in fact I think we need to stop this project dead in its tracks, let me explain why.
First of all I apologize for dwelling on this, I must purge my mind of the worry, I cannot eat sleep or muster the energy to walk around all self important and stuff. Rest assured any candidate running for office on the Infinite Bonobo platform does not get my vote, again let me expalin.
Where do we get an infinite number of Bonobos? I do not think we need to test the theory that if you gave an infinite number of Bonobos and infinite number of typewriters that eventually they at least one would type the entire Library of Alexandria , in fact eventually all the Bonobos would reproduce all books written and unwritten, all emails all blogs everything ever recorded or to be recorded. A form of time travel if you will. My concern is that what in the hell are we going to do with an infinite number of monkeys! Where do we get and infinite number of typewriters, consider out of an infinite number you will get a fair share of super genius monkeys who will eventually take over the world and eliminate their closest cousin, me! What would happen?and it would one of these genius monkeys figured out how to not only count to infinity but count to infinity +1! You gather all our best scientists, genealogists, philanthropists, phrenologists, realtors, and politicians in short the greatest minds of the planet and each and every one of them would quake in fear at the mere thought of infinity +1…Besides who wants to be stepping over monkeys clicking away at their typewriters scattered all over you living room you bathroom every nook and cranny, Ha! Monkey 94,994,330,928,334 just typed “Henderson the Rain King” backwards! Once they started pounding out the classics front and backwards their egos would grow, they would start dressing the part and demand an infinite number of silly bow ties…In other words lets just forget about the entire idea..The End

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Arizona 07 The Final Conflict

I do have to mention our state of the art fire pit, it was made from the inside of an old washing machine, just the metal basket set on the ground, plenty of holes for oxygen and the fire was kept in a contained area which also generated a surprising amount of heat without building a huge wood eating fire, (wood is not plentiful in the desert). It’s a great idea, just don’t let your wife catch you taking apart your washing machine, sometimes the women folk are not understanding about great ideas…Where was I? Aha day four, we split up into two smaller groups and the group I was with headed up to some of the enduro trails from the previous Saturdays race. The trail was well marked we rode about 38 miles then back to camp for sandwich’s and back out for a nice long afternoon loop of single track in a smaller group, I had forgotten I was bone tired and sore, what a nice ride. We made it back to say goodbye to three more of our group, which brought our team down to nine riders.
A bit about the fauna. The tall cactus saguaro Carnegiea gigantea can reach 50 feet in height, it is the cactus the reminds you of the cowboy movies, towering ancient giants, at about 80 years old they begin to grow arms, they make for a impressive landscape and one does not want to wander off trail and duel with one of these giants, you are not David but these are Goliath’s. Another more menacing cactus is the Cholla, it is pronounced "choya" it is also know as the jumping Cholla. The jumping Cholla spines will penetrate the toughest hide at the least touch. My boots, bark busters, chest protector, kneepads, all of my equipment has been host to the jumping Cholla. The cactus is not large maybe two to three feet tall, but it is like a bushy bundle of balls of fish hook spines, waiting for man or beast to brush against it so as to spread its seed. Last year Frank fell into a bush crotch first, his middle area was covered with the little needle balls, we all feared from seeing him that they had penetrated his pants and found purchase in his daddy parts, he was lucky they only covered his thighs and hips. He pulled off his pants to reach the spines with his needle nose pliers and then finally just hopped on his bike sans pants and found Highway 74 to bee line for camp, a police officer was by the side of the road and Frank pulled up to him and yelled Cholla, the police officer shook his head and waved him on, he understood why there was a man in his underwear riding a non-licensed motorcycle down a well traveled public highway, Cholla.
Our last day of riding we headed out for a short easy ride (Plane to catch that evening) to the Wildhorse Saloon for Burgers and chips, this time all most of it single track at a great pace other than my flat, then Adams flat, then Franks Flat and finally on the ride home John had a flat. We were out of tubes (Short ride and all) so with some bike juggling we were able to get myself and company back to camp just in time to clean up and head into Phoenix for our flight, leaving the group of four to pick up the pieces and camp, thanks guys…
I suppose I could ramble on for hours about all the little things that happened and tell you about more about the meals, cobbler recipes and such, (a dietician’s nightmare) this was vacation and we were riding off our sins! The fact is we meet every year, this year I believe 15 riders showed their helmets and we came from all over the states. Indiana, Ohio, Colorado, California, Utah, Idaho and of course Arizona…Maybe some other states in the union but I dismiss the states I cannot spell. Seven flats and five days ago our group gathered and dispersed. Men from ages twenty-four to fifty seven. We all laughed, we all rode, some slow, some fast, some with grace, some like spodes but we all shared the same passion and by some miracle we all came home aliv

Monday, February 19, 2007

Trail Riding and Stuff (I share but do not edit) Part 1

Looking down on the bathtub, the top of the falls.

Frank is my buddies name, he works for a living and he works real hard, come winter time, as a rule he is laid off work for about a month , a month he has learned to embrace. Half of this month he takes his wife on a trip with his Truck and Camper/Moto Hauler , they visit the southwest US and all parts in between. After about two weeks he drops her off at the airport and picks up a few of his riding friends whose bikes he hauled west in his trailer, it works out for everyone. We send our gear out with Frank, we give him gas money plus a little extra for rent. This trip Frank stopped in Tucson Arizona so his wife could gamble, his wife won 1,100.00 US at the slots, Frank loves his wife, Frank has a new helmet, gear bag, etc…. I think his wife was not selfish with her winnings…
Frank picks us up at the airport and drives us to base camp. We mount our bikes and ride into the sunset, 50 miles of trail mostly jeep roads. As is tradition the first day is easy we stop at The Wild Horse Saloon for a good cheeseburger, chips and lively conversation about the days to come. Then belly’s swollen with red meat, eyes heavy thinking a hammock and a nap would be nice, we high tail it back to base camp to meet up with the rest of the group. People arriving from various parts of the US, we fight over sleeping arrangements and pop a cold beer…I asked “Frank what’s the plan for tomorrow” he replied “ Well we head up to the bathtub then up to hell hill and after that its all just fun”!
The bathtub a rather innocuous name for something more clearly defined as “torment and struggle”. What the bathtub was named after was a tank at the bottom of a dried waterfall , the tank was set up for live stock to drink from during the dry months, the cattle are gone but the tub remains and so does the dry waterfall. Frank is first up he makes it look easy, then Stevo, a little more of a struggle because of the water that pooled at the top of the falls has been stirred up and is now trickling down the falls. The falls are now wet and slick , it is left for the fools to follow. I try not once, not twice but…three times before someone grabbed my bike deeming me incompetent and they were able to lay the front tire on the edge of the dry falls, or a staging area for a waterfall. I then pushed on the rear of my bike and soon it is over the falls , I climbed hand over fist and walked to my waiting bike hopped on and rode to the next steep climb. I watched for a few minutes, parked my bike then posted myself at the most difficult part of the hill and spent the rest of the hour grabbing bikes bars and riders helping them up this slope. After all this I was able to ride up the hill without aid, not because I am a good rider, just because by this point I knew the path to follow, the only problem was I had no witness’s to attest to my rare skill and courage. One of our friends who drove 500 miles and brought three motorcycles decided to call it quits after day one, there’s always one in the bunch, sane and rational, something I will never understand but respect.
Phoenix, the state capitol of Arizona with a population of 1,321,045 give or take a few is the 6th largest city in the United States, the Navajo call it Hoozdo, or "the place is hot", in plain old English I call it a great place to ride in the winter. Our base camp is along highway 74 known as the Carefree Highway and only about 50 miles from Phoenix, at base camp we have access to hundreds of miles of trail single track, jeep trails and more cactus than you can shake a stick at... They run National Enduros in this area and as luck would have it on day three, the president of the club that organizes the National Enduro drove up from Phoenix with his buddy and gave us a nice tour of challenging but not miserable (see bathtub) single track enduro trail, lots of rocks (I lost count) and two flats. Our Guides Tom and Don knew the area well so we were lapping up the luxury of not trying to figure out by GPS where the hell we were and where the hell we were going… Thirteen riders in two groups, we all became one group after a few wrong turns (after all the desert is a confusing place to ride), what with the wash’s (dry river beds that flood when you camp in them) Mountains (Very large Hills) this was not Nepal but still I think they are referred to as mountains, confusing even with GPS, and a Compass. Do not leave your compass at home; it does not require batteries.
In the evenings we would service the bikes, our hands busy all the while forging in our minds excuses for our bobbles during the day, which someone would no doubt mention during dinner or around the fire later. The strategy is to try to take this bobble and spin it into a tale detailing how you passed the someone who mentioned your bobble, leaving the excuse making in their lap. During all these after ride chores, John our selfless chef would start to grill some sort of carrion. Charlie would busy himself making hand cranked ice cream or his famous peach cobbler made fresh in a dutch oven, the remainder of the group sipped drinks around the camp fire, weaving and winding along a trail of conversation that eventually led to grown men giggling like girl scouts....PART ONE...YES THERE IS A PART TWO.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Improve Your Mind With Booze

I have a theory as to why alcohol makes you smarter, if used responsibly. Here goes, your brains synopsis are constantly firing electrical charges which dictate to your body what it must do and what your brain must think , so says your brain. If you add a little alcohol (flammable) this creates rapid combustion and more efficient thinking however since the average human head does not have a muffler its brain suggests it to talk allot in order to try to expel the emissions from the alcohol burning in your brain, this is a woefully inadequate method to rid your brain of carbon monoxide. With out a muffler your brain fills with carbon monoxide which can slur your speech , fog your thinking and ultimately make you real sleepy. Using alcohol to make yourself smarter is a delicate balance, a dance like ballet but much different, I guess... I do not not that much about ballet. Cheers JW

Friday, February 09, 2007

Sir Richard Francis Burton

I have mastered and am quite fluent in 26 languages, by the end of the year I hope to have a total of 30 under my belt, my next conquests will be German, French, Spanish and Pig Latin. I had a friend question why I saved the last four to master, as he said “think of all the new people you could talk to”! I told him its not that I don’t want to talk to more people, its just that I think I have exhausted the ones I have already talked to, in other words I think the world is not ready for more of my drivel.
Sir Richard Francis Burton I believe knew around twenty-one languages, he was an adventure/linguist in fact it is widely believed he translated the ancient Indian text of the Kama Sutra. Word on the street…it is not really true that he was the translator since the original manuscript was in ancient Sanskrit, which he could not read. However, he collaborated with Forster Fitzgerald Arbuth not on the work and provided translations from other manuscripts of later translations. The Kama Shashtra Society first printed the book in 1883 and numerous editions of the Burton translation are in print to this day.
Its odd to know that I have eclipsed Sir Richard in the language arts, I have not done the math but I know in my heart of hearts that I know a lot more words than the guy that has been dead moldering in the grave some 126 years. Written by author and quickly dismissed as bold-faced lies. Kind Regards Sir JWW

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Ralph Steadman

When I was a wee lad I read Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. This was back in the day when I was riding my skateboard, homemade walnut board with state of the art trucks and wheels, I was proud of this board. I remember how proud I was when I finally found and purchased a Fear and Loathing T shirt, bright red with Ralph Steadmans cover art from the book, I was soooo cool. Now Dr Gonzo is taking a dirt nap, but his collaborator and illustrator Ralph Steadman has written about their time together and is hawking his wares on his website, gawd what I would have given to have this board, I may start wearing cuff links as well. Visit your site and buy your valentine a gift, she/he will shit their pants when you give them something so cool. Kind Regards JW

The Forward to Mr Steadmans book was written by Kurt Vonnegut
an Indianapolis native, who went to the same HighSchool as me Da, preceding him by a few years he visits friends in Indy right up the road from my house but he never gives me enough notice to change plans so I usually miss him, or lets say I never see him, never met him, but I am sure he would take a shine to someone like me...Again Kind Regards