Good Sports

Well, it’s not like one can attend a sporting event (unless one is a cardboard cutout). Even if a bunch of tiny tots wishes to get together and play a sport, it’s just not happening. In lieu of this, here’s a not entirely unsatisfactory substitute, pinball.

How about the classic American pastime of baseball? My brothers and me played baseball all summer long when we were kids, and completely obliterated the grass in the backyard (which makes mowing quite easy). I did watch baseball until I got rid of cable tv, so I suppose I don’t miss it. (Apparently they held a World Series this year for the many cardboard fans.)

From the vintage look of these machines I would guess that this sport is not currently popular (except among cardboard persons).

The other sport that I usually watch is ice hockey, and I typically go to a couple of games each year.

Hockey has also been around as a sport for quite a while, my brothers played alley hockey but I didn’t (and I never got the hang of hockey skates).

But supposing one didn’t want to see a sporting event, but wanted to see their favorite band (too bad for you).

There’s a game for that too.

Or how about the pinball wizard from the 1975 movie “Tommy”? it doesn’t have nearly the features of the previous game, but it does make all the proper pinball noises.

And then there are the grandfathers of pop music, with a rather elaborate machine that celebrates their early years. But wait a minute, there’s a “kiss meter” right next to this. Maybe it means that Kiss rules! (or not as the case may be).

These substitutes are now available to play, at least until 5 pm Friday, when everything goes into hibernation.

Up Close

Back in the spring (during this past century) I made a post about looking out over the town and the sorts of things one might see (if one had telescopic vision). I took a drive over to the the other side of town, and got a closer look at these sights that I had mentioned.

It was a fine, smoke-free summer day when I took this photo. One can see the numerous antennae atop the mountain that gives a connection to the outside world. Not visible is the military base that is a mile inside the mountain, right across from the giant Army base. It was possibly a secret at one time, but lots of people have worked there over the years, so it’s not much of a secret at this point.

Right at the end of this rather expensive neighborhood on the north end of town is an active quarry.

It’s a huge operation, as they are slowly moving rock from the site into the many building projects going on in our city. I have seen clouds of rock dust when they set off the explosives (really, it’s worth watching), but I don’t think I would care for this in my backyard.

Here is the fabulous downtown as seen from the south. Once upon a time it was the mercantile heart of the area, but now it is mostly bars and restaurants (some of them are even open).

And from the west it looks pretty much the same. The houses in the foreground are built atop mine tailings from early gold mining on the other side of the mountain.

So basically the locals have been turning the mountains inside out for over a century, and they are still at it.


There are a lot of the usual sorts of trees about town; there are avenues of elms leading to downtown, cottonwoods and mountain ash by the streams and river, aspens here and there, and lots and lots of pines, Scotch, Ponderosa, Mungo, etc. and of course Colorado Blue Spruce. Then again, if one looks closely, there are a few other species to be found.

For example, here are some “palm” trees located just outside of a cowboy bar. Easy to care for, these trees require no water and are quite sturdy.

I’m not sure what sort of tree this might be, perhaps it is something tropical.

Although this looks rather like an ordinary pine at first glance, it is actually a cell phone tower, which is quite a different species of tree. And it is very useful to have around.

With the leaves turning yellow on the top of this tree, it almost seems like it might be Fall. However this a a special grove of aluminum aspens, it’s not commonly found in nature, so they are perpetually the same.

So far no birds have been fooled by these trees, by a few people were horrified by the way these aspens had been trimmed. I guess that shows how much people love trees, whatever the kind.