The muffler man of Mentone, California stands watch over the desert valley from behind a fence in someone’s front yard. The plaque on his middle, like an ersatz giant belt buckle says “Outboard Inn, Mentone Beach.”
With his baseball bat at the ready it seems like he’s ready to rough any wayward trespassers up. Doesn’t he look like the type of guy that might tell someone they’re “cruisin’ for a bruisin’“?
Look at him! You just know he tells dad jokes. Or maybe lights his own farts on fire with a lighter. You can totally see that, right? It’s the stifled, sly smile.
The hot desert sun has bleached this poor fellas irises to a rusty orange tone. Either that or he’s really seen some stuff. It was 2020 when I visited, after all.
The Buyan spends his time amongst other interesting Mentone Beach-dwellers like a soldier in the Giant Chicken Army on the roof (naturally) and a Statue of Liberty head. Not to mention a bevy of outboard motors, antique car wheels, and a mountain of other yard junk.
If you take a look at the Google Maps streetview, you can get an idea of what’s doin’ in that yard. It’s quite something!
Though it was very tempting to try to get a peek over the fence, I heard dogs on the property so I opted to keep my distance. I’m sure they get plenty of visitors stopping for a look, but I wasn’t interested in being mauled. And when visiting these types of private home stops, even though they are a spectacle, I feel it’s important to respect their space.
Thank heaven for the weirdos. They keep life colorful.
Wouldn’t you know it? I had myself another run-in with a member of the Giant Chicken Army.
At the end of January, I flew to California to do a little ride about. While cruising along Route 66 for a spell, I decided to stop in to the museum that now occupies the building that is touted as the first McDonald’s location in San Bernardino.
When I pulled in to the parking lot, to my surprise I was greeted by a card carrying member of the Giant Chicken Army.
Didn’t see that coming!
Just look at this majestic beast in his McDonald’s livery. Isn’t he something, proudly strutting his stuff around the parking lot like that?
And if his colorway wasn’t enough? Notice, friends, that he’s outfitted with grab handles for the bravest of buckaroos who try to tame him. Can you imagine saddling up on this big ass mother-clucker and trying to last 8 seconds on this buckin’ bronco? Only the mightiest need apply.
How do you suppose he hurt his pecker? That beak has clearly sustained some serious damage. What are the odds on it having been the result of a tangle with Godzilla, or maybe Bigfoot? Or, maybe just a run of the mill tussle following a weekend bender with the guys down at the coop. We may never know. But keep seeking the truth! It’s out there.
Lastly but not least, rounding this dynamite package out? Super-70’s tube socks. I’m lovin’ it!
Don’t sleep on the Giant Chicken Army. I’ve warned you all before but it’s the same old story. No one does anything until it’s too late.
While heading towards the Dragon in October, I encountered another mobilized soldier, but this time the scaly legged critter was in uniform. Or… disguise.
Perhaps, as previously postulated, it is the same chicken following me but the long way ’round and he’s wearing a new t-shirt to try to blend in. This theory is terrifying on several levels. The most troubling being that this chicken has ESP to know where I’m going before I do. I mean we’re talking about Men Who Stare at Goats-level PsyOps.
I’m telling you, people. They/He is everywhere. Next time you see a pair of beady eyes staring in your window one night, don’t say I didn’t warn ya.
At the time I remember feeling like I was moving too fast, that I wasn’t taking enough time to linger. I don’t know why that happens but it does. You long for time away and then while you’re in the midst of it, you won’t slow down to savor it.
Looking through my limited selection of photos through Kansas and Missouri, hindsight tells me that I did it wrong. I hurried too much.
While traveling along ’66 in Illinois, I saw a vibrant blue Selz shoe wall ad in the town of Chenoa. While this one doesn’t quite compare aesthetically, it was still nice to see. This faded ad was in the town of Galena, Kansas.