S4 E39 — Closing in on Uncle Billy’s Lynx Creek Mining Claim

“Stop” I yell as movement to my right catches my eye. Jay slams on the brakes.  He’d been glancing off into the trees on the left side of the road. “What?”


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Hi and welcome to Friday’s 39th Episode in Season 4 of  Our Disruptively Resilient Year” on this 13th day of May in the spring of 2022.

What’s Going On

Literally Bottled and Set Adrift from KnowWhere Atoll

    • @KnowLabs suite of 36 digital magazines, according to my analytics, grew from 12880 this week to 12943 organically grown followers.
    • Orange County Beach Towns 204 viewers stopped by the week before.




Jay began to twitch.  He needed to stretch his legs and he had more on his mind, like the agenda for our afternoon sightseeing before we hit the road for Sedona in a day and a half.

Elle and Emma the Baroness were all for it, but first they wanted to check out where the music came from near where the cyclists entered Whiskey Row to our right as we walked out the front door of The Palace.  

There he was in the flesh.  Kind of like the Greeter in Laguna Beach, only instead of a Scandinavian named Lars, it was a local costumed in Wyatt Earp cowboy with dark pants, a holstered revolver, a billowy white shirt with a dark vest, handlebar mustache and Stetson.  

He nodded.  

We nodded. 

We crossed the street, retraced our steps to the left of the old white courthouse past Buckey O’Neill’s statue and to the street parallel to Whiskey Row.  Picnickers stretched out on blankets on the green grass in the shade under towering trees.  Some leaned their bikes against the trunks.

Just like how the Prescott streets were barricaded for the race the area in front of the bandstand so too was with an orange mesh barrier that sagged and with traffic cones.

Image Copyright 2022 Stephen G. Howard

The message was clear.  It was a pay to hear them play.  Jay twitch returned.  He negotiated with Elle as only husband and wife can out of earshot.  Elle directed us across the intersection to jump into their SUV for the continuing tour.

“Where we going?” I asked Jay after resuming my post riding shotgun in the passenger front seat.  

“You’ll see.”

He took us on a tour of the Prescott suburb so we could see luxury homes overlooking distant vistas and the lush fairways and greens in the valley below.  

Elle suggested stopping in at the Club as the sun began casting long shadows where she would host a Derby-day party for members on the day we headed out.  But, an ‘80s themed party was just started which meant only partiers were allowed.  

Now what?

“I know,” Jay said.

We hit the road for the wilderness.  

Image Credit: Stephen G. Howard Copyright 2022

“I think we can get close to where your Uncle Billy worked his 400 ft. claim at Lynx Creek.”  

Surprisingly it wasn’t that far in the late afternoon.  Soon we meandered down an asphalt road deeper into the forest. 

Oops.  We encounter a road closed sign.  Fire threat.

I crane my neck as we begin to turn around down to where Jay had pointed towards Lynx Lake.

But, except for the place you can rent boats I couldn’t see through the trees to anything that would fuel my Uncle Billy imagination.

Moments later I turn to look straight ahead.

“Stop” I yell as movement to my right catches my eye.

Jay slams on the brakes.  He’d been glancing off into the trees on the left side of the road.


Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

A half a dozen deer clear a fence on the passenger side road and leap in front of Jay’s black SUV and down into a wooded meadow.  Three more do the same behind our vehicle

Through the one-way street maze which throws Jay into a frustrating loop we just can’t seem to find our way through to our destination.

Wait, there’s a city truck with workers in yellow safety vests hanging off the back end grabbing orange cones which allows Jay to navigate through two malls side-by-side.

We only half to walk a block and a half to the entrance of El Gato Azul.

At 316 W. Goodwin, EL Gato Azul’s reputation was “Preskit’s Quirky, Cozy, Friendly Place to Meet!” and known as “Southwest Inspired Tapas & Cuisine”

El Gato Front pic painting

The small yellow building with a blue door framed by a variety of flowers in a dark purple and gray containers in wood and cement.

Our waitress doubles as bartender, she tells us.  El Gato Azul is by popular restaurant standards.  And that equation translates into a small, cramped kitchen and bar.  

Our hostess leads the way to our table.  Not known for ambience, a sheet of plastic separates our table from 3 tanks of propane.

Looking up and out onto the street, we see couples and groups of couples returning from the square which we sense is closing down — party over.

Instead of passing in front of the restaurant, they follow a path down a green overgrown slope onto what would have been a creek. 

Jay says it’s a shortcut to a parallel street behind El Gato Azul.

We pass on any hint of dessert, I pick up the check and we climb up to the street from the restaurant’s entrance, turn right and make our way back to the strip mall’s parking spot.

Before the night is over I describe the article about Prescott, prefacing it with how infrequently Siri finds something for me in Apple News.  

“We know her.”

The headline read, Aggressive coyote attacks woman walking dog — and nips at others, Arizona police say” and, get this it ran in The Kansas City Star.

Jay’s daughter, who lives in Northern California,  saw it too and sent it to him.  Elle said she’s a fitness instructor and used to getting out on the trails around their community.  

Joe stood up, poured more wine from the bottle we brought as we continued to relax on their back patio and then he put more wood in their outdoor fireplace to take away the chill.

“Adding insult to injury” Elle said .“She had to get all of those rabies shots too.”

“It’s pronounced like ‘Havelina’” Elle corrected me.  Like La Hoya instead of La Jolla she suggested as I brought up the other Apple News story about a Javelina in Sedona, “Hungry Javelina Gets Stuck in Car, Goes for a Ride in Arizona” from Chedder News.

Image Credit: WikiMedia Commons

They have a family of Javelinas that pass through in their back gravel and rock “yard” into their neighbors.

We thought they were a wild pig or something, but apparently they are their own species, they said.

In Sedona the Javelina rooted around in an empty vehicle, knocked it out of gear into neutral and took a joy ride.

Not quite as accomplished, nor as notorious as the Lake Tahoe bears, we trade stories about bears demolishing cars and trucks and breaking into kitchens usually through Tahoe garages and hibernating under second homes while unintended.

The next morning I swore I heard that Javelina family outside our window in the guest bedroom, but now I believe it was just Jay sweeping dust off his sidewalk and front entry.

The Tau of Steves: What You Don’t Know Could Fill a Book

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“5” Steve Carell, 57; Steve Martin, 74; Steve Wozniak, 69: “You’ll notice you’re of a different mind entirely from where you were last year. You’ve dispelled a few myths and course-corrected accordingly. You’ll get a chance to go back and pick up something you lost along the way.” Leo

We concluded the three-year examination of how bits of wisdom changed — during the “normal” pre-pandemic year compared to the pandemic year, and more recently to the paradoxically normal year. 

Season Four continues now within domestic and global chaos.

Previously in Season Four, The Disruptively Resilient Year

S4 E38Billy and Buckey Blow My Brain in Whiskey Row’s Palace; S4 E37Racing a Little Wobbly on Whiskey Row; S4 E36Big Rigs, Skull Valley and Yarnell Hotshots

Related from Season Three, the Paradoxically Normal Year

S3 E39Ready for Your Big Leap Forward?; S3 E38Sliding on a Super Slippery Slope to 2nd or 3rd Cousins; S3 E37Tell Me More Lies I Can Believe In; S3 E36Placebo, Meaningful Coincidence or Just Feeling Lucky

Related from Season Two, the Pandemic Year

S2 E39The Best Tau for the Pandemic Year, Don’t You Agree?; S2 E38What Should You Do If You Stumble Across Loaded Information?; S2 E37How Deep is the Chasm? What Do We Do?; S2 E36Turning Lemons into Margaritas

Related from Season One, the Normal Year

S1 E39What’s Up with Facebook?; S1 E38Day 38 of My 1-Year Experiment; S1 E37Day 37 of My 1-Year Experiment; S1 E36Day 36 of My 1-Year Experiment


Holiday Theme for Friday the 13th:  

Many tall buildings avoid naming the 13th floor and go right to the 14th (or more conspicuously to “12B”) in hopes of getting around the bad luck. There are airports without a 13th gate and teams without a player No. 13. What superstition do you keep alive to avoid bad luck or engender good luck? Is it working?

“4”  Steve Zahn, 51: “Some say everything happens for a reason. Others say life is random. You’ll have a little evidence for both arguments today and whatever you get you’ll leverage into a tidy chunk of good fortune.” Scorpio

Okay, this appears to be sufficiently mysterious.  Yes, my mother after something bad happened would say, “Everything happens for a reason.”  She never could tell me why.  Now I should wait for my good fortune to appear, right?

Random ones that make me want change my sign.

“5” Steve Carell, 57; Steve Martin, 74; Steve Wozniak, 69: “You’ll notice you’re of a different mind entirely from where you were last year. You’ve dispelled a few myths and course-corrected accordingly. You’ll get a chance to go back and pick up something you lost along the way.” Leo

Wait, isn’t this all about how events conspired to entice me to drag this natural experiment into four seasons now? But, what was it that I lost along the way? 

“4”  Steve Aoki, 41; Steven Spielberg, 74: “There will be pressure to take life at a hurried speed. Push back — change lanes or remove yourself from the race entirely. You’ll be happier going at your own pace.” Sagittarius

Well, I am an introvert.  And like all introverts, our brains are wired differently.  It just takes more time to process what’s being shot at us through a firehose of events.  Is that why I’m an advocate for anticipating how the convergence of trends shapes our futures?  So I have more time to plan contingencies?  And at the slightest hint of a pivot or a new direction required I’ve anticipated enough that I can activate if this, then that plans.

“4”  Steve Harvey, 62; Stephan Patis, 53;  Stephen Hawking (1943 – 2018): “‘No matter how brilliant your work may be, it won’t play in the wrong crowd. Do your research, find out what appetites you’re dealing with, and aim your efforts to serve those desires.” Capricorn 

This just seems to be a lesson I still haven’t learned the hard way.

“5”  Steve Nash, 45: “It’s weird, but it does happen… people can be good, enjoyable company and yet be, nonetheless, bad for you. For whatever reason certain people bring out a side of you that you’d rather keep in. Noted!”Aquarius 

I don’t know if it is arrogant or from a streak of elitist in me, but just like Ian one of my clients told me, “I don’t suffer fools” easily.  If you’re asking my opinion, I believe our former President took advantage of the ignorance of his followers like PT Barnum had all those decades ago.

“4”  Steve Jobs, (1955 – 2011): “You have something that the others need. Position yourself to be available to those who have best earned your offering or those who most desperately need it.” Pisces

Except for making myself available for people one-at-a-time I don’t seem to command a wide enough audience for those who desperately need something from me can find me.


    • “Here, Right Matters: An American Story” by Alexander Vindman. “We’d long been confused by the president’s policy of accommodation and appeasement of Russia, the United States’ most pressing major adversary. Russia’s president Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine, seizing the Crimean Peninsula, attacking its industrial heartland, the Donbass, from the capital, Kyiv. By 2019, little had changed, Russian military and security forces and their proxy separatists continued to occupy the Donbass. The biggest change was to Ukraine’s importance as a bulwark against Russian aggression weeks earlier, the White House had abruptly put a hold on nearly four hundred million dollars.” 
    • David Enrich begins his book with a suicide in “Deutsche Bank Dark Towers: Deutsche Bank, Donald Trump, and an Epic Trail of Destruction” and then meticulously details the bank’s Russian money laundering operations. Deutsche’s Russian business surged after revenues had fallen 50% due to the 2008 financial crisis. Putin’s Russia, poured in to Deutsche from deals it did with VTB Bank, linked to the Kremlin’s intelligence apparatus. Deutsche positioned itself as a crucial cog in “The Laundromat” by doing what couldn’t be done — processing cross-border transactions for banks that were too small  and didn’t have offices outside their home countries.
    • “Unthinkable: Trauma, Truth, and the Trials of American Democracy” by Jamie Raskin recalls one tragedy no parent should endure — the suicide of his son — and then a second tragedy at almost the same time — the insurrection on January 6th 2021, that terrified he and his congressional peers who were tasked by the Constitution to routinely oversee the orderly transfer of power from one former president to the duly elected new President. 
    • “A Warning” by Anonymous (Miles Taylor) written prior to the January 6th Insurrection as an insider’s account documenting how frequently the former President’s behavior and rage without any “guard rails” showed just how far he would go to win the next election at any cost while spinning lies and misinformation on top of each other.  
    • “Peril” by Bob Woodward and Robert Costa provides anecdotes, stories and inside reporting documenting the controversial last days of Donald Trump’s presidency, as well as the presidential transition and early presidency of Joe Biden. 
    • “Devil’s Bargain: Steve Bannon, Donald Trump, and the Nationalist Uprising,” by Joshua Green tracks the money behind the scenes leading up to the 2016 presidential election and the growing influence of Steve Bannon’s network of extreme nationalists.

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Inspired by Holiday Mathis – Creators Syndicate