Sunday, October 01, 2006

October 1, 2006
My first speech yesterday was in the Glendale Main Library Auditorium. Had a full house to hear about publishing books (it was an all day seminar featuring many speakers). I was telling them that they somehow, someway have to get past the crowd at the foot of the ladder. I told them how we all have been trained to get in the back of the line, and not speak out, but wait for someone to recognize our talents and how that rarely, if ever, works. As I'm finishing this point, a Native American Woman down front stands up and says, “I have been researching and researching and I want to write for True West.” She reaches out and hands me her card, which said, “Theda Goodfox Kresge” and I thanked her and looked at the audience and said, “And that’s a perfect example of how you get past the crowd at the foot of the ladder.”

After lunch at Earl’s with Betty Radina and her friend Jo Jo (and admiring Brad’s new paintjob extravaganza on the interior of the restaurant), Kathy and I drove to Mormon Lake (south of Flagstaff) for a speech to the Arizona Trail Association. This is a group of 700 volunteers who are building and connecting a trail all the way from Coronado Point, below Sierra Vista and right on the Mexican border, all the way to Utah. They were celebrating another link in the trail near Mormon Lake and invited me to come up and regale them with all the stories about all the historic characters who crossed the trail. I gave them the laundry list, from Cochise to Geronimo, from Billy the Kid to Doc Holliday, Wyatt Earp and Big Nose Kate, and from Elvis to Ev Mechem. We had fun and many laughs. Kathy was so inspired she wants to do the entire trail (we heard several stories about people spending ten weeks to do it). They also need more members and I told them we could help them with that. They are doing a great thing to preserve the heritage of Arizona and it’s a perfect fit for the magazine. Here’s their website if you want to check them out:

Came back this morning by the backtrail, via Clint’s Wells and Camp Verde. Got back here at about noon. Went down to check on Rob but he’s out getting “transportation.” Said he’d see me in the office tomorrow.

The leaves were just starting to turn orange up on the rim and it was quite stunning. As I drove down the winding back roads I pondered my own artistic trail and wondered how I will ever find the truths I seek.

“If you really want to discover profound artistic truths I’ve found one of the best ways is to cut off your ear and give it to a prostitute.”
—Vincent Van Google

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