Thursday, February 27, 2014

Still Life w/Grapefruit + Amarylis.

Navajo Lodge Neon Sign Endures in Prescott.

We were in one of Prescott's abundantly fascinating antiques shops the other day.  Arriving at check-out we were stopped in our tracks … ooohing and aaahing over this extraordinary neon sign.

Store proprieter, lower left in this pic, explains that the old Navajo Lodge went out of business 20+ years ago.  During tear down the "branding" sign miraculously survived.  Our new BFF explains that virtually all the neon tubes remained intact;  new sign owner did minimal repair.

Visitors from all over the world have asked to buy the sign. "Not for sale," is the answer.  "Unless you want to buy the entire building and the business!"

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Hoyt's Hottie Harem - Hee - Haw!

You've read here on the Poppy Blog that our dear friend Betsy came to visit Poppina and me here in AZ.

From a road trip to Arcosanti (several pics of that Utopian desert experiment are on the blog), to a visit to Prescott, walks and talks and plenty of tube-time watching the Sochi Olympics, what a grand time we had.

Next time you run into Betsy be sure to ask for her side of the story.  And see if she brought home a foto any more fun than this one of Hoyt and His Harem.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Los Cab GC = Veloster (and Golfer's) Paradise.

OK. Here's a place to pedal on over and visit.

Located in Wickenburg, AZ, about a mile south of Hwy. 60 on Vulture Mine Road, Los Cab GC is known by the big jugadores as a muy suave course to play.

Bike guys dig Los Cab as well. Not much traffic on the property, stunning views of the Bradshaw Mountains, fascinating fauna and flora, and an old fashioned caballo coral where as many as 100 head of horses await their buckaroos and the afternoon trail ride.

Outside the gates: perfect photo op. Stunning saguaro cactus adds plenty of authenticity.

First Snake (Skin) of the AZ Season.

The good news is that the snakes made it through another AZ winter.  Check out the skin I nearly ran over on my ride yesterday.

Not-so-good news:  Diamondback Rattlers are out of hibernation earlier than ever, and, boy are they hungry.

Watch your step, por favor.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Poppina is generally the star of the Poppy Blog.  Fotos of her enhance many posts. Nancy's a good sport, agreeing often to be the focus, though not always enjoying the notoriety.

Every once in a while the the lens is pointed the other way.  Case in point, on the way in to Arcosanti today, Old Poppy takes his turn. You see solar energy panels over my left shoulder, main building, visitors center, bakery, cafe and galleries, over my right. 

Welcome to Arcosanti, AZ!

The late Paolo Soleri, Italian architect, artist, city planner and Utopian visionary, established "an experiment in urban design" in Central Arizona some 40 years ago.  This bold, ground-breaking "urban laboratory" is planned to incorporate homes, businesses, and food and energy production alongside cultural, educational and recreational activities in a compact pedestrian environment.

Betsy, Nancy and I drove the 75 miles today to Arcosanti, enjoyed poking around the art galleries, listening to the iconic Soleri Windbells (bronze and ceramic), getting real-time education talking to staff and residents, and enjoyed a picnic lunch as we took in some rays at Arco's 4,000' elevation.

As Newsweek magazine said about Arcosanti, "As urban architecture, (it's) probably the most important experiment undertaken in our lifetime."

Our gang was very excited to be going to see this legendary site. We had a great time, would definitely return, and encourage all of you culture hounds to hightail it to Arcosanti.

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Bike Share, Near Chinatown, San Fran.

They say the City by the Bay was slow to set up its bike share program.  But they've got it going now, though I didn't  check 'er out on last trip to Grant @ Columbus. Why so slow? I assume timing had to do with steep hills, limits on park/exchange places, not to mention riders who were likely in marginal shape! 

Saturday, February 15, 2014

"Come Back Buddy," Rockin' Good Music of the '50's

These guys could have won a Grammy!

Mike Randall on guitar, and lead singer.  Miss Poodle Skirt and Saddles Shoes, on bass and doing close harmony.  A stand-in drummer who still remembers all the songs.  Rockin' good times and tunes from my formative 'teen years, laid down by "Come Back Buddy."  

The music scene at Wickenburg "Gold Rush Days"did not disappoint.

Friday, February 14, 2014

M. Peliedes, South Florida Genus.

My brother Joe is part-botanist, part ichthyologist, and all heart.  He's a volunteer at Miami's Fairchild Gardens, where time is spent caring for butterfly species like the stunning and mysterious M. Peliedes.

Joe sent this challenge:  spell peliedes, and repeat the word, fast, four times in a row.
OK readers:  show us YOUR stuff !

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Wickenburg Ghost Bike Still Haunts.

An anonymous veloist paid tribute to his fallen comrade by draping a Ghost Bike with a well-used riding cap. The addition of a small American flag strikes a melancholy note, if only you stop long enough on Hwy. 60 to listen.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Catchin' A Cab at the Embarcadero.

Pina captures the old man in the back seat of an uber-cool pedi-cab working the iconic Embarcadero area in San Fran.   The pedaler charged us five bucks for the ride, and earned another five-spot in tips.  Dude was strong, strong, strong, didn't need steroids! Young lady in the foto hopes to operate her own pedi-cab someday.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

All the Way from May (Idaho, that is).

Nancy Martiny came all the way from May, ID to take part in the annual leather craft show and exposition. The Civic Center was alive with classy, hand-crafted leather goods; punches and awls and finely milled decorating tools; massive sewing machines to stitch the most daunting bridles and harnesses in the America West; and some good old boys (and gals) who were willing to share stories about their craft.  Nancy, pictured above, also sold pocket knives which I admired so much I bought a half-dozen!

Never Met an Old Caddy He Didn't Paint.

Old Big Caddy

Found this one on a used (very used) car lot while driving through Delta, Colorado. I just can't go by an old car or truck without slowing down to take a look or make a drawing or watercolor. There was just so much more style then, don't you think? We are lucky to spend so much time in the West where aridity is an old car's best friend. Always something interesting parked in the alleys... James

Friday, February 7, 2014

Back When Cars Were Caddys!

What do you suppose this Caddy is? '61 maybe? Did they ever make a longer one? Or a model that squatted lower to the ground.  This baby weighs as much as a semi, gets perhaps 9 mpg?  Check out the white walls, the skirts, the paint job.  Wowzer!!

Saturday, February 1, 2014



Defying Poverty Blog Needs Outreach

Our blog to inspire discussion around tackling poverty with bicycles is in motion. Topics range from model programs to the reasons why these programs are necessary.

The problem is, very few people are reading it. Can you help? Please post its link on your blog or website, forward it to your friends and give it a good plug through your social media devices. Here’s the link

Thanks so much! The more people who connect with this blog the more ideas will develop toward powerful programs that lift people out of poverty with bicycles.