Tag: Sights from the Road

New Jersey’s Cowtown Rodeo Muffler Man

New Jersey’s Cowtown Rodeo Muffler Man

Well, this is embarrassing. The Cowtown Rodeo cowboy and I showed up to the party wearing the same shoes.

muffler man boots

 

For its petite size, New Jersey is really full to the brim with silly roadside stuff.

cowtown rodeo muffler man

They’ve got a high concentration of mufflermen including one of the highly coveted Uniroyal Gals. There are giant teeth, Gundams, dinosaurs and even a giant mariachi band.

Oh, New Jersey. You’re so weird. Don’t ever change.

cowtown rodeo muffler man

A Day in the Life – Will Ride For Nonsense

A Day in the Life – Will Ride For Nonsense

me and the peg leg pirate in paWhat is it about a giant, fiberglass peg-legged pirate that will make me ride 170 miles out of my way?

Is that the dumbest sentence you’ve ever read?

Sometimes my ‘reasons’ for riding must seem completely ridiculous. And on more than one occasion I’ve wondered: it is really the thing that I want to see – or – is just an excuse to go for a ride?

Maybe it’s a little of both?

Roadside stuff taps into the whimsical parts of life that I love.  So much of my day to day life is… serious. Excursions to see giant chickens and pirates and muffler men (oh my!) offer a perfect silly escape from the same old same old. If seeing something like a humongous cauliflower doesn’t bring a smile to your face, I think you’ve got problems.

Of course, when I do have a specific destination in mind I do try to string together a great ride to get there. It becomes a win-win situation. Seeing something silly and getting in a great ride. Will ride for nonsense.

How About You?

Are you often focused on something specific when you go out for rides?

 

Visiting The Queen of the Roadside – Nitro Girl

Visiting The Queen of the Roadside – Nitro Girl

For all of the cliche popular images of the scary, hardened bikers – I feel like I must exist on the opposite end of the spectrum. When I’m out and about on my bike strangers approach and talk to me all the time. So much for a tough image.

I don’t think that I have an exceptionally friendly face or anything. Besides, most of the time people seem to want to talk to me when I still have my helmet on. No one talks to me when I drive my car anywhere. Is it the same for you?

nitro girl uniroyal gal

Just last week while traveling through New Jersey, I stopped off to snap a picture of Nitro Girl. She’s the coolest Uniroyal Gal around. She stands outside of Werbany Tire Town  in the town of Blackwood.

nitro gal new jersey uniroyal gal

I parked my bike, took out my camera and snapped a few photos. One of the customers who was having his car worked on walked over to me and said “If you like her, they have bobbleheads inside.”

Jackpot! Thanks, helpful stranger guy!

nitro girl bobblehead

Ten bucks later I was jamming my very own NG into my sidebag. Admittedly, I was probably more excited than is healthy. 🙂

Interesting – The website lists the bobbleheads at $25. The fella in the shop charged me $10. Did I get a deal because I looked like a hobo or have they been marked down? Who marks down Nitro Girl?!

Roadside Americana: The Scary Pie Lady of Frackville PA.

Roadside Americana: The Scary Pie Lady of Frackville PA.

I may have to start rethinking my penchant for visiting roadside statues.

Exhibit A:

Just check out the cold, dead eyes on these two.

Scary pie mama statue

And that poor kid… I’m not sure what’s more tragic; the headless doll, her haircut or the fact that she looks like she’s listening to the ocean in her mom’s pelvis like a giant seashell.

What do you think the pie is stuffed with? The souls of kittens? The hopes and dreams of children? The doll’s head?

scary pie lady shoes

By the looks of things in the (tres manly) shoe department, zombie pie lady must pull away from her bolts nightly, leaving her lofty perch behind to terrorize unsuspecting townspeople.

I hope they didn’t haunt my topbox.

scary pie people

Pie lady – so scary, so wrong, SO RIGHT! 

If you want to visit scary pie people:

115 West Coal St.
Frackville, PA
Roadside Treasure Map

Fading Americana: Ceresota Flour Barn – Lehigh County, PA

Fading Americana: Ceresota Flour Barn – Lehigh County, PA

Fifty years from now, what will my generation have left behind that tugs at the heartstrings of people who like to play the “Remember when…” game? What will our contribution to fading Americana be?

Painted Barns

If you’ve read this blog for any amount of time then you probably know that I am completely enamored by Mail Pouch Tobacco barns and advertising. But, I’m certainly not one to turn up my nose at any of the other lovely painted barns that decorate the landscape of rural America.

There is something perfect and sweet about the life that I imagine being attached to such places. In my mind they represent an ideal, a kind of life that is fading from the fabric of America as sanitized suburbia creeps further and further.

Ceresota Flour Barn Lehigh County Pennsylvania

This Ceresota Flour barn on the Limeport Pike near Coopersburg, PA has to be one of the most lovely painted barns I’ve seen. And as it turns out, this mural replaced a fading Mail Pouch ad. I thought that the blue trim around the barn edges was reminiscent of Mail Pouch.

Ceresota painted barn pennsylvania

It makes me happy to know that there are people out there in the world who are working to hang on to the shadows of our popular culture.

See it on the ole Roadside Map.

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