please see below

An Arizona Poem
4,000 B.C.

The Devil was given permission one day
To select a land for his own special sway.
So he hunted around for a month or more,
And fussed and fumed and terribly swore.
But at last he was delighted a country to view
where the prickly pear and the cat-claw grew
With a brief survey and without further excuse
He stood on the banks of the Santa Cruz.

He saw there were still improvements to make,
For he felt his own reputation at stake.
An Idea struck him; he swore by his horns
To make a complete vegetation of thorns.
He studded the land with the prickly pear,
And scattered the cacti everywhere;
The Spanish dagger, pointed and true,
And last the cholla to outstick them too.

He imported the undesirables direct from Hell
The size of his sweat-scented ranks to swell,
And a legion of skunks, whose loud, loud smell
Was to perfume the country he loved so well.
And then for his life he couldn't see why
The Rivers showed any more water supply;
And he swore if they furnished another drop
You might take his head and his horns for a mop.

He sanded the rivers until almost dry
And poisoned them all with alkali.
And he promised himself on their slimy brink
The control of all who from them should drink.
He saw there was one more improvement to make
So he imported the scorpion and rattlesnake,
That all who came to this country to dwell
Would be sure to think it almost a hell.

He fixed the heat at one hundred and eleven,
And banished forever the moisture of heaven,
And remarked as he heard his furnaces roar
The heat might reach five hundred and more.
After fixing these things so thorny and well
He said, "I'll be damned if this don't beat hell."
And he flapped his wings and away he flew
And vanished forever in a blaze of blue.

And then no doubt, in some corner of Hell
He gloated over the work he had done so well,
And vowed that Arizona couldn't be beat
For thorns, tarantulas, snakes and heat.
For with all his plans fulfilled so well
He felt assured that it simply beat Hell.

Illustration by Tony Bustos
Graphics by Mark Waters
Arizona Republic Newspaper

don't go away -- there's more ..... . . . . . .

(true or false)

It's So Hot In Arizona That......"

The birds have to use pot holders to pull worms
out of the ground.

The potatoes cook underground, and all you have
to do to have lunch is to pull one out and add butter,
salt and pepper.

Farmers are feeding their chickens crushed ice
to keep them from laying hard-boiled eggs.

The cows are giving evaporated milk.

The trees are whistling for the dogs.

You no longer associate bridges (or rivers) with water.

You can say 113 degrees without fainting.

You eat hot chilies to cool your mouth off.

You can make instant sun tea.
(almost true) takes about 10 minutes

You learn that a seat belt makes a pretty good branding iron.

The temperature drops below 95, you feel a bit chilly.
(true at times)

You discover that in July, it takes only 2 fingers to drive your car.

You discover that you can get a sunburn through your car window.

You notice the best parking place is determined by shade instead of distance.

Hot water now comes out of both taps.
(true, in an Arizona city they installed a water cooler a few years back
because they were forced to use water
from a natural hot water well
-- about the right temp for bathwater when it comes out of the ground.
We were told at one time to turn off our water heaters
and draw our cool water from the hot water tap,
and get our hot water from the other
until they could get the coolers installed)

It's noon in July, kids are on summer vacation,
and not one person is out on the streets.

You actually burn your hand opening the car door.

You break a sweat the instant you step outside
at 7:30 a.m. before work.
(five minutes after, would be more accurate)

No one would dream of putting vinyl upholstery
in a car or not having air conditioning.
(absolutely true)

Your biggest bicycle wreck fear is,
"What if I get knocked out and end up lying on the pavement
and cook to death?"
(hahaha- depending on how rare you like your meat)
However, you can cook eggs on the hot pavement or sidewalks.

You realize that asphalt has a liquid state.
( no, but gummy.)


Excerpt from Arizona Republic - June 21, 2000


"One of my Masters wants me to fry an egg on the sidewalk.
He thinks we should video it
and put it up on the Web.

"I don't know. I figure if it's hot enough for a sidewalk egg fry,
it's too hot to be standing around outside frying eggs.

"I told him it was a good idea, but perhaps we should wait
until it cooled off.

Then I gave him one of my ballpoint pens and showed him how it works
and he went away happy.

"I think the last time we did the egg-frying thing
was in 1990, when it hit 122
on June 26. It was so hot that some big jets were grounded
at Sky Harbor International Airport.

"This is why, according to Arv Schultz, a retired commercial pilot
and publisher of Arizona Airways and "Sky Harbor Airport News:
At the time, the calculations in the operating manuals for some jets
didn't take into account temperatures over 120 degrees."

PS: We stay indoors, it's nice and cool in here!


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