In the Earth, pt. 1

The truck dropped me off in the early hours of dawn. I got out and roamed the quiet town of Yerington.

I chuckled about having talked of this place, actually making fun of it when I worked in radio, calling it Yeringtonburg, without ever having set foot inside the city limits.

As dawn began to break, I lay flat on my back on the lawn near the old courthouse. I could lie there all day but finally decided I should look for that farm labor job I felt I needed to be a man.

Along Highway 95, I went to find the mythical farmer and his fabled farm. The fields all looked long and wide, filled with clots of dirt, each growing vegetables and lonely.

He pointed me to a small, cement block building. Behind it was trailers and tents.

I set my tent up, and by nightfall, guitars tinkled, and harmonica hummed as I gazed at the stars.

Brian Ferguson, 1952-2021

Born July 12, 1951, in Arcata, California, Brian Ferguson passed away June 20, 2021, after a battle with cancer at 69 years of age.

He graduated from Arcata High School and attended Humboldt State University. Following graduation, Brian was a teacher and coach at Del Norte High School.

His two favorite sports were football and track and field. It was in track and field that I knew him.

In all that time, I never knew we were roughly eight years apart in age. I thought he was much, much older than me.

Back then, I called him Coach as he pressed me to better myself each time I took to the oval. While I often disappointed him, he never gave up on me.

After I graduated from high school in 1978, I never saw nor spoke to Brian again. Simply put, our paths never crossed again.

Sadly, only after his passing did I learn he was active in land rights following his teaching and coaching careers. For over 30 years, he sat on the Del Norte County Farm Bureau Broad and several times as President of the organization.

During his time as Farm Bureau President, he formed the Del Norte Resource Conservation District. Brian also served for several years as Chairman of the Del Norte County Fairs Jr. Livestock Auction Committee and as President of Lake Earl Grange #577.

Rest in peace, Coach Ferguson.

The Danger of Research

She vanished in the winter of 1990, coming to Bodie to research the history of the town. A snowfall hid Vancouver Martin’s tracks, and it was assumed that she had become lost in the ensuing blizzard.

The state park service towed her truck. Her family showed to it claim it after notified of her disappearance.

However, it wasn’t her family who showed up to claim it, but herself. She was a careworn woman, ragged, wary, and her story was plain.

She claimed that she’d heard a woman crying and had gone to help her. She never found the woman, and Vancouver Martin almost didn’t make her way out of the long-abandoned town.

She said she had walked endlessly for three years but refused to speak of what she saw, with whom she spoke, or what she had been forced to do to survive.

“But you were missing only nine-days,” the junior ranger said.

Vancouver Martin, her eyes vacant, said nothing.

“Are you going to write that book you were planning?” the senior ranger asked.

“Not that one,” she answered.

When she finished filling out the paperwork, Vancouver Martin stood up, left the office, got in an Uber, and never looked back.

The So-civilized Monster

John is a photographer, who records a lot of southern Nevada and who posts some great pictures. When he’s not off on some photo adventure, he also does some great editing. This is the edit that inspired the following story…

It was the quaking of the ground beneath me as I tried to get some sleep. I had wandered off someplace I should not have gone, and I was now lost.

No longer were there the friendly narrow trails to lead me through this forest. Instead, I found myself racing headlong through a brush that the hand of man had never touched.

Still, I could feel that rumble underfoot, and still, I ran and ran until exhausted. Finally, I collapsed by a stream, ready to accept my fate, whatever it might be.

Then I saw him as he lumbered ever closer to me, a cyclops wearing glasses. I breathed a sigh of relief.

“What are you running from?” the giant one-eyed fellow asked.

“You,” I answered.

“Then why have you stopped?”

“I’m too tired to continue.”

“I see. Are you not araid now?”

“No.”

“And why is that?”

“I have never met a so-civilized ‘monster’ in my life,” I stated, air-quoting the word.

“Really? And what makes you think I’m civilized?” he questioned.

“You’re wearing glasses,” I smiled.

Laughing, he picked me up and took me home, where he placed me in a stock-pen with the rest of his sheep.

Seventh-level Grand Boogens

You’ll probably think I’m pulling your leg or something, but here goes…

Two days ago, we had a large family gathering, the first since Grandma passed away. It did not end well, and here I am now, tasked with cleaning the barbecue grill.

The gathering fell apart shortly after my mother arrived. She was not a fan of Grandma, and every member of the family knows it.

Someone lifted a glass, as in a toast, to the old woman’s memory. That’s when Mom lost it.

“She was nothing but a witch,” she shouted. “A witch, I tell you.”

Mom does not cuss, drink, or smoke, so we all knew what she really meant.

“You’re off your meds,” some shouted back.

Chaos ensued. Now, I’m here alone with my thoughts and memories of Grandma.

Mom was right. Not only was Grandma a bitch, but she was also a real witch.

A Seventh-level Grand Boogens witch, whatever the hell that is, and to prove my point, her dentures are biting the trowel I’m using to clean her ashes from the grill.

“Why won’t she die!” I cried out before remembering that I need to check on her rump roast in the crockpot.

Talk Between a Shoshoni and a Paiute Elder

“All I want to do is walk in the land.”

“Be careful there is great power in the land.”

“There is great power in solitude.”

“Look at the Red-tail Hawk above us.”

“Ahh, great power.”

“I dreamed of you swimming in the lake. You were swimming against the current. We were all admiring your perfect form. Then you dived down only to come up by Stone Mother.”

“There is great power in Stone Mother.”

“Shh, they are listening.”

“I know, but they do not understand great power.”

Slats

“What in the hell blew through here?” he asked, though he was alone.

Manny looked at the damaged fence and shook his head. He did so in confusion as he had no more dogs, and the splintered pieces of redwood slats were shattered and strewn on both sides of the property line.

He remembered back when the new neighbors had decided to dig a new well in the corner of their property less than ten feet from the fence. They worked for two months boring into the hardpan with heavy equipment and never once touched it.

Now, this.

As he studied the damage, he noticed what looked to be claw marks in the remaining redwood slats. Upon closer examination, Manny realized they were tooth marks — as if something had bit into the wood.

While kneeling to get a better look at the odd damage, Manny didn’t see the long tendril-like creature slip from the rocky lip of the well. By the time he did, it was too late, and it took him without a sound.

Hours later, and after his wife had called the sheriff, two deputies and an investigator were searching around the still busted-up fence. They would solve Manny’s disappearance, but first, one of them kneeled for a better look at the marks on the remaining redwood slats.

Reflection of a Criminal

They chased after him. The three men had seen him snatch the purse from the older woman as she finished her business at the ATM.

He had made the first corner with no problem but had tripped over the curb as he round the second corning. Now limping, the three men were quickly gaining on him.

As he came around the third, he looked back over his shoulder. He never saw the large mirror being moved by the two workmen as they crossed the sidewalk.

He hit it at full force. He heard the sound of shattering glass and then darkness.

The purse snatcher was never seen again, and the fragments of the mirror were swept up and thrown away.

Ju-Ju

Rusty believed himself to be a ladies-man. All the women in the office thought he was an ass.

His latest conquest, Ciana, had enough of his sexual innuendos and unwanted passes and had decided to put an end to his harassment. With that, she brought in 24 raw crystals and laid them end-to-end in a circle.

She was busy when Rusty entered and leaned on her desk.

“How you doing gorgeous?” Rusty asked. “Miss me?”

Ciana looked at him with a smile and cooed, “Sure, Sugar-shorts, all weekend long”

Surprised, Rusty asked, “R-R-Really?”

“Yes,” Ciana answered. “In fact, I’ve been thinking that with my help, you’ll be going places soon, and you’ll be on top in no time.”

“I love how you think,” he said.

“The only thing I ask is that you don’t do stand or even jump in that circle of cystals,” she said, pointing to the formation on the floor. “I’m experimenting.”

“Sure, Babe, whatever you say,” he responded.

“Now, excuse me, my little Pumpkin-butt, I have a load of filing to get done,” she said.

He watched her swish as she walked away. Once out of sight, Rusty went over to the rocks and studied them.

He looked to see if anyone was watching him before hopping into the center of the circle. No one was, so no one saw it when he disappeared.

Ciana returned to her desk, picked up the crystals, placed them in the plastic bag she’d used to bring them into the office, then tucked them in her desk drawer. Without a word, she returned to work.

Rusty was unsure what had happened. One moment he was at the office, and the next, he was sprawled on his back, stuck atop a 600-foot tall chimney rock formation in the middle of a desert.

Fear of Eyes

She no longer had to wear a mask, and that made Cheryl happy. She did not have a hard time wearing a mask but seeing others did make life difficult.

Cheryl suffered from childhood with ommetaphobia, a fear of eyes. Even the act of looking in a mirror with a mask on caused nausea, tremors, and sweat.

Someone discovered this fear and decided to torture her. Cheryl found a pair of eyes drawn in chalk on her front porch.

Not only did they trigger the usual symptoms in her, but the idea of the act also brought on severe anger. Cheryl even set up a security camera, but somehow whoever was responsible had evaded being seen.

Then last night, she heard a noise at her front door. Cheryl quickly opened it and found another pair of eyes drawn on her porch.

This time, and because the chalk used was still rolling across the cement, she rushed outside, hoping to catch the person. In her haste, she stepped on one of the eyes.

Without warning, she was dragged from her where she stood. Seconds before she slammed into the planet’s surface, Cheryl recognized her greatest fear in the Eye of Jupiter.

Death by Sprinkler Head

To call it anything other than horrifying would be an understatement. I tried calling it cruelty, even neglect, but neither word seems to fit the situation.

It is where nightmares come alive, adding to those that already haunt the short hours of unrestful sleep.

As I walked into the woman’s yard, I saw the live capture cage in the grass near the sprinkler head. The water was on, spraying directly into the metal enclosure.

Unfortunately, the cage had a squirrel trapped inside it. The poor animal was dead, drown.

It had put up a violent struggle to save its life. Its claws were still gripping tight to the grating of the cage, its lips a pallid waxy gray, eyelids tightly closed but puffy, body stiff.

I can’t imagine dying in such a manner, but my night terrors will resolve this.

The Smiling Woman in Yellow, pt. 3

As she struggled, her yellow dress, already short, was now over her hips. She was not wearing underwear.

Still haunted by the memory of what had happened in Iraq, he smiled at the thing in his bed, “I’m gonna fuck you till you scream with pleasure.”

Already naked himself, Nick stuffed his erectness into the woman, and she screamed so forcefully that the bedroom windows rattled. Within a couple of minutes, he released into her, and again she reacted with the same effect.

But Nick wasn’t done. He remained stiff and continued to pound away at her.

Fifteen minutes later, Nick felt her stiffen up. Then she bucked at him, bending in an arch that lifted him from the bed.

Still in her and balancing on her hips, he continued to thrust and thrust. Together, they came in a violent spasm that went finished she collapsed and he on her.

“I must have been dreaming,” Nick said as he climbed from the tangle of sheets.

Weak in the knees and his thighs sore, he walked into the bathroom. As he stood to pee in the toilet, Nick knew he had not been dreaming after all.

A panic set in, and he raced to the full-length mirrors of his closet only to see a woman standing in his place. His fear ebbed as his eyes began to glow red, and the smiling woman in him grew hungry for her next victim.

The Smiling Woman in Yellow, pt. 2

Once inside and with the door securely locked behind him, Nick relaxed a little. As he prepared for bed, he looked out his window at the street and where the woman had been.

He felt himself jump as he looked down on her, and she stood still, staring up at his window. Nick picked up his cellphone and prepared to call the police, but when he looked back, she was gone.

With his 9mm Berreta and phone on his nightstand, Nick turned out the light and settled in to get some sleep. Suddenly, his phone rang, and he picked it up.

“Hi,” was all the text read.

“Who is this?” he texted back.

“The woman under your covers.”

Nick reached over and turned on the lamp. Then he tossed back the blanket and sheet that covered him.

There was the woman in the yellow dress, eye aglow with red and growling. She sprang at him, and he twisted out from under her.

Now on top, Nick held her down at her biceps and refused to release her. Though possessed like a demon, she was no match for the Marine, who had maintained his physical strength since his days in the Corps.

The Smiling Woman in Yellow, pt. 1

The odd walk, the goofy grin, and the overpowering sense of danger were nothing new to him. He had seen it once before while on duty at a checkpoint outside Baghdad nearly 16 years before.

Back then, he was in the Marine Corps.

The night of the incident at the checkpoint remained burned in his memory. A woman, covered head-to-toe in a yellow burka, came out of the darkness and refused to halt before fired upon and killed.

Now he was watching a Black woman dance and pirouette along the sidewalk across the street. She also had the strange smile that the long-dead Iraqi woman had when her veil was finally removed.

Strangely, they had spent most of the last year and a half wearing face masks because of COVID-19. Nick wondered if the woman across the street was suffering some odd effect of wearing a mask for too long.

Still, he kept walking, his mental alertness at its peak and his folding lock-blade knife in his right hand. As he made the corner, he realized the woman was now behind him on the same sidewalk about 75 yards away.

He picked up his pace. Home and a sense of security were only a couple of hundred feet away.

Can’t Made This Sort of Stuff Up

A gunman held up a U.S. postal carrier in the early evening hours of June 7, along Kipling Drive in Dayton, Nevada.

Investigators with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (USPIS) describe the suspect as a Black male, about 20 years old, five feet, seven or eight inches tall, last seen wearing a red hoodie, black shorts, and gold-colored shoes. The USPIS is offering $20,000 to anyone who can provide information leading to the arrest and conviction of the robber.

While there were no injuries during the robbery, the irony is that the U.S. Postal Service is advertising to hire another Dayton-area mail carrier.

Who Cares about Budgets?

Part of Center Street in Reno, between UNR and the railroad tracks at Commercial Row, was renamed University Avenue in 1920. Then in 1957, Reno renamed Center Street from Virginia Street north to the University as University Avenue.

Both times, Reno changed the name back to Center Street.

Now, in time for its 2024 sesquicentennial, UNR wants Reno to rename nine blocks between the Truckee River Bridge and the University gates along Center Street to University Way.

“The potential renaming provides a powerful testament to how important the University’s position as the doorstep to downtown Reno truly is,” said UNR President Brian Sandoval.

The Social Media Winner

Perhaps I’ve been slow in recognizing that people love to argue, win at all costs, and for no reason at all. Worse yet, we battle over unimportant stuff.

For example, I like to post historic photographs. I don’t post them without first vetting their background.

In the recent past, I’ve posted stuff without checking first, and some of my posts have come back to bite me in the ass. So I am careful.

Yesterday, a friend forwarded me a picture of a 16-mule team pulling two empty wagons up Geiger Grade in the 1870s. After researching it, I posted the photograph.

Within 24 hours, someone claimed that the photo was of “a 20-mule team returning empty from Daggett up the grade 1895.” Daggett is in the Death Valley area of California.

After following the link they provided, it was the same picture I’d posted. But once again, it is a 16-mule team and not a 20-mule team.

The person also claimed to know that the grade up the hill was “never that steep.” I wasn’t alive to know how steep Geiger Grade was in the mid-to-late 1800s, so I cannot argue that point.

But the clincher for me: They ended their argument with, “I got my information from an official government website.”

“There’s your problem, never trust the federal governement,” I wanted to argue but didn’t, and that makes them the winner.

The Wind

She awoke lying in the tall grass of the prairie. Despite being wrapped in a quilt tightly from head to toe and in the sun, Sarah still felt chilled.

It was much better than what she had been going through. The night before, she was deathly ill with a fever so high it was believed she would not make it till daylight.

Slowly Sarah pushed apart the blanket and sat up. She looked around but saw nothing save the high waving grasses.

The only sound was that of the unceasing wind that blew day and night, playing tricks on the mind. It was a maddening tumult that made a life among the Conestoga wagons nearly unbearable.

Though unnaturally quiet, Sarah did feel better and was soon on her feet. As Sarah pressed through the grass, she found no sign of the thirty wagons she had been a part of since St. Louis.

She called out to her husband. He did not answer.

Finally, she found deep wagon ruts gouged into the thick sod. She followed it for as far as she could before finally sitting down and crying in utter despair.

How long she sat there and cried and screamed and wailed, Sarah did not know. What she did know was that she knew the sound of a wagon train, with the plodding of the oxen hooves, the crack of the whip, the sound of the wheels creaking and cast iron pans clanking beneath the heavy wooden wagon frames.

Then she saw the first Connie of the westward-bound wagon train. Sarah scrambled to her feet, racing towards it.

The startled oxen tried to move off the trail. They were beaten back onto the path by a man walking on the left side of the team.

“Help me,” Sarah said. “They left me behind.”

The man failed to acknowledge her. He didn’t even look her way.

Sarah ran down the line screaming for help.

The fifth wagon back, where a woman walked beside a man, she wailed, “Please help me.”

“Did you hear that?” she asked her husband, her face a mask of fright. “It sounds like a woman crying.”

“It’s only the wind,” he said.

The Double-Slip

Wally Barrieau, Sergeant, U.S. Marine Corps, returned from his third tour in Afghanistan a different man. He knew it, and so did everyone else, and that is why he felt it necessary to exit the service.

His sudden personality change happened after he became separated from his squad and ended up wandering around the desert, lost. During this time, April five through July 15, 2006, something so incredible happened to the Sergeant that he could not bring himself to speak of it.

It began with a massive dust-devil in the early morning hours. Once cleared, Barrieau found himself surrounded by wood-framed buildings, the kind he had only seen in old Western movies.

As he was assessing his situation, he heard a woman scream. Before he could react, he watched a man race from the nearby building.

Then he heard a door at the back of the building open and close.

“Where in the hell did you come from?” a voice asked from deep in a shadow of the building.

Barrieau paused, “You American?”

“Yeah?” the voice returned. “What else would I be.”

Barrieau had no time to answer as a man stepped out of the shadow and struck the confused Marine on the side of the head. Barieau dropped to his knees as a second blow fell.

Without thinking, Barrieau drew his service pistol and fired four times point-blank into the man’s body. The gunshots fell him instantly.

Bloodied and bruised, he was arrested while lying in the street outside the building with the man he’d shot on top of him. He was taken to jail to escape a quickly forming lynch mob.

That morning, Barrieau was presented before a judge, and a jury was hastily gathered.

“Why are you dressed so oddly?” the Judge asked.

“I’m a Marine and we’re at war,” Barrieau answered.

“What war is that?” the Judge asked, adding, “Not the Phillipines again?”

“Shut your mouth,” said Patrick McCarran, his defense attorney.

“Where am I?” Barrieau asked.

“Tonopah, Nevada,” McCarran responded. “Now shut up.”

The young man argued that his client had acted in self-defense against an attacker trying to avenge his mistress and not a lawman who was working in the line of duty.

Questions arose after Nye County Sheriff Tom Logan, a family man with eight children, was found dead clad only in a blue nightshirt. Logan had been spending the night with his mistress and brothel madam, May Biggs, not the heroic fight to stop a “pistol duel” between two “gamblers.”

Biggs claimed that Barrieau had been asleep in her parlor when she tried to rouse him and send him on his way.

“He elbowed me, and I yelled for him to ‘get out,'” she added.

“I was never inside any house,” Barrieau shouted before being ordered to remain quiet or be removed from the courtroom.

“At my scream, Tom burst from our bedroom and began beating him,” she said.

Seeing Logan had a gun and not knowing he was the county sheriff, Barrieau fired four shots, each striking Logan. The jury found Walter Barrieau innocent on July 13, 1906, and he became mostly lost to history.

Afghan sheepherders found Barrieau half-dead and informed a nearby Army patrol of his location. Barrieau laid in his hospital bed in Germany, not only suffering from a severe concussion and dehydration but unable to get the hallucination off his mind.

Eleven years later, Walter Barrieau saw the historical article in a newspaper column. And while his name was misspelled and the facts incorrect, he realized why he had disappeared from the pages of history.

“It’s one hell of a story and no one to tell,” he chuckled as he folded the paper up. “Besides who would believe me.”

As he left the casino’s restaurant, he walked to a corner store to buy a bottle of whiskey. Barieau would treat himself to a solid drunk because not only had he experienced a one-hundred-year-old time slip, he had also slipped the noose.

Bucket Listed

As I sat down to begin the job of researching news articles and seeing whom I might be able to call or visit to get a quote or statement, my wife came into the room, looked around, and sighed heavily.

“What’s wrong?” I asked.

“This mess,” she answered. “What am I going to do with it if you die before me?”

“Honestly,” I returned, a bit surprised, “I haven’t a clue.”

“Then we should get rid of it,” she said.

“That is easier said than done,” I protested.

“Why, if you don’t have any plans for all this crap?” she added.

It was my turn to sigh.

“All I want when I die is to be remembered for more than taking up space,” I said. “I don’t want to be famous, and I don’t need butt-loads of money, I jus’ wanna be remembered as someone who wore his heart on his sleeve and worked hard to make that happen by writing, painting, taking pictures and collecting stuff that people tend to no longer value.”

“So, in other words I’m stuck with all this shit until after your dead,” she replied.

“Pretty much,” I smiled. “Unless you kick the bucket first.”

Abductor Minimi Digiti

Instead of writing as I would have liked to have been doing, my day has been a myriad of chores. That is how Wednesday’s go as it is the only day I have off from my usual duties — in other words, I do not chase news stories on this day.

No. Wednesdays are filled with stripping the beds, washing and drying the sheets, and then remaking the beds. I also do all of the towels in the house, from both bathrooms to the kitchen.

I also wash all of the white cloths, fold and put them away.

Between washing, drying, folding, making, and hanging, I listen to music or do some reading. This morning I picked up my old copy of Gray’s Anatomy for no particular reason.

The book is a bunch of line drawings of the human body and labels. I used to use it for my emergency medical studies.

As I was looking at an illustration of the foot, I saw the name of the small strap of muscle that controls the outward flexion of the little toe. It is called the “abductor minimi digiti.”

Our hands have the same muscle, which also controls the outward flexion of the little finger. While I was quick to realize I could flex my little fingers outward from the accompanying four, I cannot move my little toes in the same manner.

Because I became obsessed with making my little toes do my bidding, I ended up behind in my chores. And this is why I am so late in writing this evening.

I have concluded that my little toes are not actually attached to my nervous system, and therefore the little band of muscle is as beneficial as a ruptured appendix.

The Politics of Plants and Drought

It’s been a long-held belief of mine that the politics between plants and drought are a double-edged sword that cuts both ways. Case in point…

A new Nevada law outlaws about 31 percent of the grass in the Las Vegas area to conserve water.

The ban targets what the Southern Nevada Water Authority calls “non-functional turf.” It applies to grass that virtually no one uses at office parks, in street medians, and at entrances to housing developments, but excludes single-family homes, parks, and golf courses.

The measure requires the replacement of about six square miles of grass in the metro Las Vegas area. By ripping it out, water officials estimate the region can conserve 10 percent of the water supply and save about 11 gallons per person per day in an area with about 2.3 million people.

When the ban takes effect in 2027, it will apply only to Southern Nevada Water Authority jurisdiction, including Las Vegas.

Meanwhile, Tiehm’s buckwheat, which grows only in Nevada’s high desert, should be protected according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

The six-inch tall wildflower with yellow blooms is fewer than 30,000 individual plants and hasn’t been found growing anywhere else in the world. It can only be found along Rhyolite Ridge, west of the Town of Tonopah, in the Silver Peak Range.

This is “another man-made problem” problem.

Up the Down Stair Well

It was jus’ before midnight as I left my friend’s home in Virginia City. Once out the front door, there is a set of well-lit stairs to the right of the porch.

The night breeze coming down from Sun Moutain, now known as Mt. Davidson, felt delicious, and so I paused, letting it cool me off. As I stood there, I saw a quick movement from the side of my eye.

Someone had peeked around the corner at the bottom of the stairs. I was sure they were planning to scare the crap out of me.

“Hello?” I called. “I saw you.”

No answer.

So I raced down the stairs to see if I could catch them. As I did this, I turned my camera on and let the flash engage.

My plan was to ‘blind’ them temporarily. It did not work out that way.

When the flash lit the area beyond the corner, I realized I was not dealing with anything ordinary. Whatever it was, it left my butt puckered as I stumbled up the stairs and ran to my truck.

The House of Lester

A tall, beautifully-built blonde with green eyes met him at her apartment door as he was preparing to knock. Vicky had a way of doing that to Tim.

Raised in what some would call a “commune,” but what followers believed was a “community, Vicky intrigued him, and he hoped that he did more for her than that. She was like two different people, one fun-loving and adventurous, the other academic, serious, and he was still learning to distinguish between the two.

She was fun-loving and adventurous today.

“I have a surprise for you,” she said as she pulled the door closed behind her.

Tim followed her out to her Mini Cooper, “But we can’t take my car, so we’ll have to take your truck.”

“No prob,” Tim said.

Forty-five minutes later and several miles of rugged dirt road behind them, they came to a rise that overlooked a ghost town hidden in the folds of the Nevada desert. Vicky smiled as she watched the look of amazement on Tim’s face.

“Wow,” he said.

“I knew you’d love it,” she said.

They slowly drove down the steep embankment and into the wide center strip of land that had served as the main street at one point. The buildings, though old and abandoned, were in good shape.

Tim reached behind the seat of his truck and pulled out his camera. Vicky could see that he was excited about the photographic possibilities of the place.

“How did you find this?” Tim asked.

“I didn’t,” she answered. “It found me.”

He wanted to ask her to explain, but it wasn’t the first time she had said this, so he knew it was useless. Instead, he allowed his mind to wander to a favorite subject, the Spann Ranch.

The ranch, as it was known, had been a one-time movie set. Forgotten since the hay-day of Western films, save for Charlie Manson and his followers, Spann was hardly used, except for a hang-out.

Not counting location, the abandoned town could be the same.

Without thinking, he said, “And to think I’m here with a woman whose family was considered ‘the Manson family of the East Coast.'”

The smile slipped from Vicky Lester’s face as she replied, “I know, why do you think I brought you out here.”

Tim felt a sudden chill of death’s hand surge over his body as he came to realize his mistake.

Exposing a Pattern of Fauci’s Fraud

It was no surprise that my wife knew about the possibility of having to get a booster shot for COVID-19. It was also not surprising that she did not know about the Freedom Of Information Act that netted three thousand emails from Dr. Anthony Fauci’s government account.

While I do not want to go into the email’s contents, I will say that Fauci’s integrity is under fire. They are online and searchable if you are interested in learning more details.

That aside, I have not liked the man since the AIDS ‘epidemic.’ I like him even less since I recognized a pattern.

In many of his emails, he seems to agree COVID-19 may have been a viral bat-to-human transfer. We know that is not untrue.

It is the same direction he took with AIDS. In 1984, the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases reported that HIV (the virus that causes AIDS) might be a monkey-to-human viral transfer.

Though no one knew it at the time, Fauci is the one who developed that theory. So when I heard of the bat-to-human viral transfer premise and that Fauci was involved, I knew it to be bull shit.

Teaching the Fad and Not the Truth

Try as I might listen to President Biden speechify on the so-called ‘Tulsa Race Riots,’ I simply could not stomach the pandering. Of course, to use ‘riot’ is wrong because it was murder — and there is a difference.

How and why it happened, I will not go into as I cannot and will not attempt to explain or sidestep the morays of a period gone by. I will explain why this was not a “hidden” event as so many, including Biden, would like us to believe.

It was the new school year, 1974, and I was 14 years old Freshman. I had U.S. history, a subject I enjoyed but was not need to taken until I was a Junior.

In this particular class, the Roaring 20s, the Wall Street Crash, and the Great Depression were being taught. Oddly, students were getting extra credit for swallowing live goldfish, a fade from the 1920s.

Deciding I would pass, I skipped class in favor of ‘hiding in the library,’ as I called it. There, I enjoyed reading books on various subjects, including history.

It was also in the library, in 1974, at 14, that I learned of the Tulsa Race Riots. I was appalled by this, and the following day I asked why we were “swallowing fish” instead of learning about things like the wholesale murder of people.

Simply put, I was told to sit down and shut up and to quit skipping class. I failed the subject that year.

Now, why do I call the President’s remarks pandering?

Because this has never been a “hidden” incident. Not only was it reported in every major and minor newspaper across the U.S., but it was widely reported in the foreign press too.

Where it did become “hidden,” was in the classroom. Instead of teaching the stomach-churning truth, we were being fed “live fish,” until our stomachs churned.

This is a lesson in the dangers of selective history.