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Matt Weinstock, April 12, 1960

April 12, 2010 |  4:09 pm



1960_0412_peanuts 



An Escape to Nature

 
Matt Weinstock     There's this hideaway up near Lake Hughes and Sunday, responding to an urge to get away from mundane affairs, a group of weekend pioneers, equipped with enough picnic lunch for twice their number, headed there.
 
    We drove up the Ridge Route, Highway 99, always an enjoyable journey for those who remember it as it was in more primitive days.  Approaching Gorman we came upon one of nature's most glorious sights.  The hills were covered with soft blankets of brilliant gold  poppies. Here and there the gold was trimmed with blue  lupine.  A gas station attendant attributed their profuse growth this year to the heavy early snows.
 
    From there we headed east on Highway 138, which connects with Lancaster, but turned off on the Lake Hughes road and came eventually to the place -- acres and acres of acres.

   




 April 12, 1960, Abby
 
   
    A FAMILY USED to live there but the house burned down several years ago and it was abandoned.  It is heavily wooded with oak and pine trees and abounds with friendly lizards, sage-covered meadows, evidence of trespassing hunters, marvelous views, crisp, smogless air and incredible silence.  There's no water.  You bring your own -- beer.
 
    I was hiking up a crest on what was once a dirt road but is now overgrown with brush when a  young deer came charging out of the trees.  He headed for me, became frightened -- I always do this to deer -- turned and disappeared. 
 
    Another time I was walking along a path and almost stepped on a pair of quail concealed by a bush.  They took off, saying hasty things about intruders in their domain.
 
    I also captured a large, beautifully colored horned toad, one of the first I've seen running wild in years.  His underside was canary yellow.  The children wanted to take it home but I turned it loose.  Nature always affects me strangely.
 
    It was real wild and in a couple of days I expect to be entirely recovered from my aching muscles and the pure air.
 
::
 
    SPEAKING OF peace and quiet, a loud fellow was sounding off in a coffee shop yesterday to the extent that others near him had trouble being heard.  After an earful of it, Arthur Morley remarked, "You know, he contributes very little to silence."
 
::
 
    WHEN IT BECAME known last week that the actors' strike was virtually settled and only a few details needed to be worked out, speculation arose as to what was under discussion.

    One version was that the actors were holding out for psychiatric care, as the retail clerks once did, and the products were demurring on the grounds that this added benefit would bankrupt the industry.  All in fun.

::

    IN CHECKING what she considered an exorbitant telephone bill a woman in Palos Verdes discovered a $3.50 call she hadn't made.  She complained and the phone company promised to investigate.

    With her next bill she received an apologetic note stating the $3.50 had been erroneously charged to her.  The phone company also thanked her for her patience and informed her the error was attributable to the changeover from human to automatic billing and wouldn't happen again.  However, the bill had two more calls she hadn't made and now she asks, "Who do I write the letter to this time -- the billing machine?

::

    TRIPLE TERROR
The Dodgers and Braves
    have the pitchers,
The other teams, too, have
    some dillies;
So why are they faced with
    the jitters?
The Giants will give them
    the Willies.
        JULIAN BROWN


::

    MISCELLANY --
Understand an octopus at Marineland is known affectionately as "Omar the Tentacle Maker" . . . Frank Barron tells of an ad exec who refuses to wear Ivy League clothes.  He graduated from a Big Ten university . . . Better Mottoes Assn. selection for the month is "We like your attitude -- but what are you doing?"  But the judges passed up a  better one among the also-rans:  "Knowledge is power if you know it about the right person."
   

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