Scrapbook Two Hundred Fourteen…


October, 2019


The John Ehrlichman Saga.


When John was the Domestic Advisor to President Nixon it could be argued that he was one of the 5 most powerful people in the world. Then along came the Watergate scandal that drove Nixon from office. It also spelled John’s political ruin. He said, “rules in the Oval Office were different from rules anywhere else in the world.” 

He was convicted in federal court of conspiracy, obstruction of justice and perjury, and he served 18 months in the prison at Safford, Arizona.

IMG 1225s

Forrest, John and Diane Sawyer in the library at Fenn Galleries. She has just interviewed John for a nationally televised program. John refused to answer any questions unless both he and Diane were on camera together for fear that the question would be changed before broadcast and it would look like he was answering a different question.

I met John soon after he was released and we became friends. Our gallery had a book signing for his, Witness to Power (there were pickets outside our gallery), we fished the Pecos and San Juan rivers together and went to China on business once. 

John and I spent many hours in conversations about his political experiences and the famous personalities he had met along the way. I found his stories fascinating, especially the one about a criminal plot to break him out of prison and hold him for ransom. He thought it was funny that the government would have to pay the ransom to get him back so they could put him in prison again

John was easy and forthcoming with an answer to any question posed by me. One day John and I were talking about his trial and it was plain to see that he felt abused. He pointed out that, with public opinion so strongly against him, there was no way he could be found not guilty. He said, “When the president of the United states asks you to do something it is very difficult to say no,” thus his perjury conviction.

IMG 1980je02

To fight the boredom of long hours sitting in a courtroom John doodled. He drew portraits of the jurors, witnesses, lawyers, prosecutors, bailiffs, US Marshalls, other things, and Judge John Sirica several times. There were 102 doodles and many were drawn on White House letterheads. 


Original documents by John Ehrlichman

What his doodles lacked in artistic deference was made up in historical importance. They showed what a very important, man on trial for serious crimes, was thinking about while his fate was being decided by a group of people he didn’t know. 

Accompanying each doodle was a lengthy ink-written caption that explained the subject or provided commentary about it. 


I suggested that we publish his art in a leather-bound book. To give it class we needed to gild the edges and put it in a slipcase. The plan was to sell the books, each one with a doodle tipped in. That meant printing 102 books, I knew I was going to lose a bunch of money. John agreed, and we signed a contract. I wrote the foreword for the book. John Connally signed it.

Soon after the book was printed, we had a party at my home. While thumbing through a copy, my attorney turned to me and said, “Forrest, you’re gonna be sued for a hundred million dollars.” 

The comment caught me in mid sip. The small Corona beer I was half way through didn’t seem as necessary as it did when I first started drinking it. 

All of a sudden, I saw my attorney as a lawyer. Although I didn’t know the difference between the two, I think that characterization was correct. He started showing why I had made a mistake by publishing the book. One aberration was the drawing of a woman’s leg. 


I didn’t think that was so bad, but when my lawyer started reading other captions in the book, I balked. I had heard enough already, and I turned to John, who was standing nearby. “John, will you indemnify me for any loss I might incur as a result of what you wrote in this book?” He said “NO” with a halting abruptness that made me think it might be the only word he knew. 

With concern that something might happen inimical to me, I wrote a letter to John dated May 23, 1985. It said, in part, “When the book was printed and we were ready to start advertising and distribution, you took a copy to Morton Janklow (John’s lawyer and agent in New York, whose daughter worked in our gallery). He raised the question of libel, which you relayed to me. At that time, I put a hold on the project until we could find out where we stood.”

Other things were happening that I didn’t like, so one cloudy afternoon I burned 101 beautifully bound doodle books that had gilded edges and were slip cased. With that deed done, my liability was gone. I kept one copy for my own library and that’s all. It’s an orphan. 

There are a small few unbound copies of the book out there somewhere. Morton Janklow has one, my daughters each have one, and a friend in Cody has a copy. 

I just hope Jill Wines doesn’t get wind of it and come looking for me. 

In 1999 John died from complications of diabetes. He was 74 years old. I’m glad that chapter in my life is closed. f





Scrapbook Two Hundred Thirteen…


October, 2019


New Things That Turn Into Old Ones


For a while now, I’ve been on a history kick, trying to think of ways I can influence the thinking of folks in the future. All sorts of ideas are coming in. One of the best involves plant life.

The changing leaves of autumn are bragging about their new fall colors, I’m taking advantage of the situation.

I’ve gathered some of the prettiest newly-fallen leaves from around my yard. Then, with a felt-tip pen, I write the type of plant, the date, and print my name.

So far, I have a yellow from an aspen tree, a beautiful red from a vine that climbs one of my ponderosas, and a maroon from a group of weeds that keep coming back into my garden each year, much to my chagrin. 

Then I place each each inside the cover of a book to dry out and wait for some smiling face to find it in the far-distant future.

You should do that too. It’s a way to leave your mark on history and someday cause a smile. Please don’t underestimate your importance. What fun it would be to find an old book with a leaf that George Washington had signed. 

If you don’t want to do that, please go out someplace and plant a tree. f






Scrapbook Two Hundred Twelve…


October, 2019


My Rubloff Experience



Arthur Rubloff, Chicago Real Estate Developer

In the 1970s, when our Santa Fe gallery was in full flourish, one of our good clients was Arthur Rubloff. He personified aristocracy in its finest moment. Wearing a 3-piece suit and patent leather shoes, he looked like a Prime Minister. The only fault I ever found with Arthur was that his shoes looked to be too long for his feet, although I didn’t profess to be an authority on either subject.


Massasoit Bronze

Somewhere along those years, we sold Arthur a bronze portrait of Massasoit (1581-1661), the great chief of the Wampanogas tribe. At more than 10’ tall, some said the feather in the Indian’s hair reached clear up to the sky.

The bronze was installed in one of Arthur’s Chicago shopping centers, and he invited me to attend the unveiling ceremony. When we walked into the mall, I saw that the bronze had been cordoned off, about 10’ around, with an obtrusive white picket fence. Arthur smiled and said the fence was there to prevent the kids from damaging the bronze. 


Grizzly Bronze Outside the Natural History Museum in Denver.

After telling him that there was no way anyone could harm that piece of sculpture, I reminded him that he wanted the bronze on display to give something back to the many shoppers who frequented his mall. I told him of the giant Jonas Brothers grizzly bronze that stood outside the entrance to the Natural History Museum in Denver. “As high as the kids can climb, and reach with their hands, it has the most beautiful patina in the country, and above where they can touch, it is dull and lackluster.”

As the fence was being removed, the band played Hail to the Chief.

Arthur said a few words to the small crowd of people who had paused in their shopping to listen, then he introduced me. It fell my lot to explain who Massasoit was and say how much the art meant to the city of Chicago. It was one of my classic red-face speeches that lasted just long enough to satisfy propriety. 

Arthur’s limo took us to his office. The driver, dressed in a casually pressed black suit, sat erect and always faced forward. His matching colored leather cap, daintily tilted, seemed to evoke a festive mood. The lady in the shotgun seat I guessed was one of his secretaries. I couldn’t see her face because a glass partition separated the two of them in the front from the two of us in the back. 

During the 30-minute ride Arthur and I didn’t talk about architecture, but I couldn’t help but notice the name Rubloff written on the sides of 2 or 3 buildings. He asked what I would like to have for lunch. My reply was something like, “Well, under the circumstance, maybe champagne and pheasant-under-glass are in order.” 

We laughed and I asked him about his celebrated glass paperweight collection that he had promised to the Art Institute of Chicago. The question was a mistake because he started dropping types and names about which I knew nothing. Out of respect, I listened intently, and frequently nodded.

When we entered his spacious office spaces and sat at his dining table, we were served glasses of chilled sparkling champagne, which had to be from a very good year. Although I didn’t like the stuff I sipped and smiled in celebration of the moment. After a nice salad came the pheasant-under-glass. (His secretary had listened on a secret limo intercom, and phoned ahead). 

It didn’t take me long to realize that I was way out of my cozy element, and I probably wondered if Arthur knew what a hot dog was.

Looking back on that day now, more than 4 decades removed, I am reminded of other experiences that similarly favored me during my gallery years. But none of them were as good as being at home in the friendly surroundings of my family. f






Trying To Read Between The Lines…

October 2019

By James Collier


Trying To Read Between The Lines

For this solve, I tried to keep things relatively simple. One day, about a month or so ago I was reading some replies on Dal’s blog. The discussion was in reference to some of the things Forrest Fenn has said in the past, as well as the 200ft and 500ft quote. I began to wonder why people were able to get within 200ft and 500ft of the TC, but not realize they were so close. How!? In almost 10 years, and the countless amount of searching, on top of the amount of people who have had very intellectual ideas, why has it not been found? So, I began to think. I sat around for an entire afternoon and asked myself the following questions:


1.How did people get so close and not realize it?
2.Why did FF tell people if you didn’t read anything else in the book, read “My War For Me.”
3.Why did ff tell a kid when asked if he thought a kid could solve it, “Yes, quite possibly one of the “smart” ones.”
4.Why did he say that “telling people when he found the location” would be too revealing of a clue?
5.Why did ff say there were clues “sprinkled” throughout the book but they weren’t deliberately placed to aid the seeker?
To answer these questions, I wanted to approach my next solve by simply sticking to the notion that all you needed was the book, the poem, a map, and an extensive knowledge of Geography. That’s it. Nothing else. I began this solve by taking Fenn’s advice and re-reading “My War For Me.” I went back to this chapter and tried to focus on what he was saying. I tried to find something that would punch me in the face. I tried to put myself in his shoes, and when I did, something stood out to me. After all of the narrow misses, the war, getting shot down, finding the soldiers grave site, what would I look forward to most? If it was me? I would look forward to nothing more than coming home to my family. Being done with it all and in the arms of the people I love the most. That day was December 22nd for him, and when he walked into his home it was Christmas Eve. This is what hit me in the face…the punch so to speak. “So what?” you might be asking. Well, let me explain as to why this was important to me.


This goes deep into question #3 & #4 above. Why would it have to be one of the “smart” ones? Why would the time he found the location be too revealing? I was wondering if there was place in the book he specifically mentions an age. I knew of one for sure, but I wanted to go back to the chapter it was in and read what was being said. This chapter in TTOTC is “Looking for Lewis & Clark.” Fenn states “I was thrilled and wished I could have been part of those great adventures. Sixteen-year-old kids are like that I guess.” Could this be the age he was when he found the spot? A specific age that would be too revealing? It was also in this chapter where question #3 came right back around to slap me in the face. On page 63, ff states “ A few days later with the luxury of hot chocolate, I made some notes that might be helpful to any future “SIXTEEN-YEAR-OLD GENIUSES” who think looking for Lewis and Clark might be fun. “One of the smart ones,” “Sixteen-year-old geniuses.” There is no way this was a coincidence in my mind. It is because of this chapter I believe the “map” you need to have is very specific. The map you need is a map of the Gallatin National Forest. A map that will “come in handy later on.”


From here I went on a google search for a Gallatin National Forest map from the late 1800s-1940s. A map he might have used. It was then I found this map:
When I found this map, my jaw dropped. Could he really have laid everything out for us? Is this the idea he said to his recollection no one has come up with for the possible solution? With this solve, the clues in the book tell you about the location, tell you about a specific time period, but they are separate from the poem. The poem is to guide you from a directional standpoint. The sprinkled clues are literally there to tell you about where you need to be once you follow the poem…IMO. He stated you could find the location by the clues in the book if you could “recognize them.” I also believe this is why he wanted the cover of TFTW to be very specific. I think the cover of OUAW tells something very specific as well.


Let me start with the Poem and bring everything full circle so it makes sense to everyone. Now for the explanation:
Begin It Where Warm Waters Halt: Madison Junction


Take it in the canyon down: Madison Canyon


NFBTFTW: The 10 river miles where he put the rubber dinghy into the Madison River and fished “downstream” towards Baker’s Hole.


PIBTHOB: I believe the home of Brown is Bakers Hole. But, we don’t put in there. We put in BELOW the home of Brown. This would be Barns Hole.


From there it’s no place for the meek: The meek will inherit the earth, so we are talking about water.


The end is ever drawing nigh: FF has stated if you follow the clues and can’t find it, go back to the beginning. I believe this is the meaning of Nigh (One definition states: Draw the covers nigh towards you). Pulling them up towards you before you go to sleep, so we are going back towards the beginning. Back towards Madison Junction.


No paddle up your creek: There will be no paddle because we are walking, and you are not allowed to have a boat/rubber dinghy in this section of river.


Just Heavy Loads and Water High: FF stated he liked to fish in the bends of the Madison where the water turned green and deep. He also stated he could throw a bike into water high. This is where we start to bring the clues from the book into the solve. Heading up stream from Barns Hole you meet an area considered “Riverside.” This is one area where stagecoaches use to bring people down to the water. Due to this, and the deep water in the bends of the Madison, this was my “heavy loads and waters high.”


If you’ve been wise and found the blaze: I believe what we are supposed to be looking for is some kind of “Star.” On a rock, on a tree, something. My reason for thinking this is because of the 3 Wise Men (More on that in a little). Also, because of the cover of OUAW. I thought he was telling us what we are fishing for is a STAR.


Now that we are here at this location, let me explain as to why I believe the clues in the book tell us about a specific time, a STAR, and the location.


Clue 1: Green Olives
Clue 2: All the references to the color Green
Clue 3: All the references to the color Red
Clue 4: In the chapter Gypsy Magic he stated the Gypsies came through town several times a year
Clue 5: All the references to food and baking
Clue 6: All the references to fire
Clue 7: The references to dancing (gypsies and fairies)
Clue 8: The darkness behind the gypsies dancing
Clue 9: The darkness of him in the cemetery looking up
Clue 10: Page 146 in TTOTC shows a man with an ax, standing with his foot on a stump around cut down trees. Darkness around him. Looking up towards a bird that looks like a dove, and behind it the head of a turtle (More on this in a minute).


I think these clues are telling us about a specific time. I then believe he created the cover of TFTW for the same reason, as well as the cover of OUAW. This brings in some of his scrapbooks as well. The Cloves (Scrapbook 49) His Peppermint and Spearmint plants in his yard (Scrapbook 146).  Imagination is more important than knowledge quote.


“Come on already!” you’re probably saying. There are some people speculating throughout the blogs that we need to be at a specific place, at a specific time, to see a shadow cast across something. I believe a specific time is correct, but not for that reason.
I believe, he is referring to the Winter Solstice and Christmas Time. The time he left the war was on December 22nd. He walked into his house on Christmas Eve and for the next month “the flourish of activities related to homecoming and reuniting with family and friends put my jungle thoughts on hold.


1.Green Olives and Green Olive Wreaths are associated with Christmas
2.Imagination is more important than knowledge (Kids have the most imagination around Christmas time).
3.Green and Red are the colors of Christmas
4.Gypsies celebrate the summer solstice and the winter solstice. They celebrate with fire and dancing just like in the book when they came to down several times a year.
5.The winter solstice is known for: celebrations of festivals, spending time with loved ones, feasting, singing, dancing and fires. It more often than not falls on the 21st or the 22nd of December
6.The bird with the turtle head behind it I considered to be a reference to “Turtle Dove.”
7.The dark night sky in the pictures: The winter solstice is the time when the day is the shortest and when your shadow is the longest (Back to the cover of TFTW (Cast a lonesome shadow across the Madison)
8.In TTOTC he talked about being in the middle: The winter solstice is also referred to as “Midwinter.”
9.The moon during the winter solstice is called the “Cold Moon.” Effort will be worth the cold.
10. Cloves are considered the Christmas Spice
11. Peppermint and Spearmint are candy cane flavors
12. I believe the Blaze is a star due to the three wise men following the north star to baby Jesus when he was born on Christmas. Also, why the stick figure is hooked on a star on the cover of OUAW.


This brings back the map above and “Christmas Tree Park.” Christmas Tree Park is entered right across the street from the Dude Motel. Referred to now as “Riverside Trail.” It takes you down to a gated off area that, if you go beyond the gate, leads you down to the area considered “Riverside.” You can also get there from Barns Hole, but the walk is a lot longer walking upstream.



This is what it looks like today


The Entrance to the trail

I hiked around here for a good 4 hours. I did a total of around 9.4 miles and took some amazing pictures. I kept and eye out for grizzly bears while trying to find anything that resembled a STAR and came up empty. The only thing I fo und I considered “Interesting” was this:
I didn’t want to mess with it because I didn’t feel comfortable doing so. There were rocks all around it, and my gut instinct was to leave it intact. It wasn’t a STAR so I left it alone. I came up empty handed, but the scenery and the sounds of the Madison River are something I will never forget. I still believe my theory make sense, but if it wasn’t for this theory, I would not have been able to see this amazing place. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did:

Heading towards Earthquake Lake once my searching was complete


Horses near Red Canyon Rd. I wanted to check that road out due to FF stating they made their way up Red Canyon. Maybe on my next trip I’ll make the hike at the end of the road.


This was around one of the deep bends of the Madison River, the guy was fishing into water that looked to be at least 15 feet deep.


Another area between Barns Hole and Bakers Hole


The Madison River before sunrise

-James Collier





Scrapbook Two Hundred Eleven…


October, 2019


Requiem for a Wreck

A few months ago, I pulled out of my garage, successfully negotiated the turn around a big pinon tree, and headed for the street. I had done that about 58,688 times before. But this time I was fiddling with the radio trying to find Meryl Haggard singing Me and Bobby Mcgee. 

Everything was going great until I hit an awkward looking box elder tree. It was in front of the bunk house where Shiloh lives. There was a loud careening noise that resonated around the inside of my car, and parts of something were flying through the air. 

It was the housing that covered the mirror on the passenger’s side of my jeep. I suddenly went into denial and hoped Shiloh had not heard the crash. I thought about blaming it on Willie, but he wasn’t in the car.

So I picked up as many of the pieces as I could find and hurried them into the big trash can stationed by the gate. As I drove away, I noticed that the mirror was working fine. Only the covering was gone. 

Broken Mirror

And you know what? Even to this day no one has noticed the damage, and I’m not talking. The unfortunate mirror still needs a little cosmetic surgery, but I don’t care about that.  My wife would be appalled if she knew. 

The wreck made me start thinking. Maybe the gods were telling me to pay more attention to things that were happening in my life, and be more in charge. So I will, starting right now.

Who says I have to repair the fool mirror? It’s my car isn’t it, and I get to make all of the decisions related to it, don’t I? 

And while I’m on the subject, who says I have to eat broccoli, cauliflower, rhubarb, and certain kinds of squash?  Men my age are supposed to do as they’re told but from now on, I’m gonna do exactly as I please. 

With my new found freedom I might even get a piercing someplace, who knows?

And maybe I’ll make myself a hot dog for lunch, with sauerkraut and whatever else I want on it. But for now, I’m going out and thank that great box elder tree for giving me inspiration. f  






Scrapbook Two Hundred Ten…


October, 2019


Canoncito Church at Apache Canyon

Painting 1

Click on the image to view it larger.                                                             photo by Lou Bruno

This painting hangs near the kitchen door that leads out to our portal. I look at it several times every day. It was painted by Joseph Cestmir Svoboda (1889-1953), and was exhibited at the Chicago Artists Exhibition in 1934 where the listed price was $5,000.

 Joseph was born in the Austro-Hungarian Empire but came to America early on so he could study at the Art Institute of Chicago. There he met Walter Ufer, who was elected to the Taos Society of Artists in 1917. Under Ufer’s influence, Joseph painted in Taos on and off for 30 years. 

I think it is a sweet little painting, but I like it for another reason. I acquired it from a neighbor lady one morning while we were sipping green tea and munching on Oreos. She was Joseph Svoboda’s daughter and her name was Olga. f


Contemporary photo of Canoncito Church at Apache Canyon






Cabin Creek…

cabibcrOctober 2019

By A&M


Cabin Creek Solve

As I have gone over many of the reasons for this solve in the related “Beaver Creek Solve”.  Please click HERE and read that one first.

We got up early on that Wednesday morning in order to solve this thing, find the gold and still be able to make it to Canyon Village in Yellowstone to see the waterfalls before heading home Thursday morning.  We started with breakfast at the Campfire Lodge Resort.  It is a campground located at the confluence of Cabin Creek and the Madison River.  The breakfast was only bested by the view while eating.and they have a fly shop if you want to go catch something else to eat.  Our waitress told us that there were two momma bears on Beaver Creek and Cabin Creek one with a cub and one with twins.  We figured one down one to go.  On the way out, this old stove caught my eye and I knew it would be a good day.


The day before, after the Beaver Creek solve, we had gone to the earthquake visitor’s center and learned about the devastation and the science of that dreadful night almost exactly 50 years prior.  One of the things that visually interested me was the scarp.  I had never heard the word but a scarp is the actual place where the plates of the earth slip and is raised or depressed depending on your perspective I suppose.  The ranger at the center told us that the scarp at Cabin creek was so vertical that it took one of the benches from a picnic table up while leaving the table and other bench in place at the bottom of the scarp.  The picnic table was no longer there but the photos told the stories of this place and many others in the Hebgen area.  We went to check it out.  That is me on the top of the scarp.


From there, we walked into a small glade just north of the scarp area and down to Cabin Creek.  We saw this friendly otter having her own breakfast.


Getting back in the car, we drove to the other side of the creek and began our hike up the creek.  About a quarter mile up the trail, you see a manmade dam.  It was built to keep fish habitats from intermingling or some such thing.  Anyhow, it is made of concrete and I can only imagine the amount of work that went into getting those materials up to that point in the creek.  Maybe I think about these things too much but I’m always amazed at the amount of work we humans do for the “good” just to be lazy and let the “bad” happen the same.

The hike up Cabin Creek Trail is beautiful  at least the first 45 minutes is.  Sheer cliffs of rocks mixed with trees and sloped meadows abound.  After the 45 minutes, there is a turn into the woods that is seemingly uphill both ways with lots of roots to trip on.  This is bear country so if you are hiking alone, find a pet rock and keep conversation with it…Loud conversaion.  This is no place for the meek. 

Our solve was to follow this trail until we got to the crossing at Cub Creek at which time we would follow the trailless Cub Creek upstream to Indulgence.  When we got to Cub, we began crossing the creek back and forth on the rocks available.  We came across one bend and saw a large embankment of red.  This was the closest thing we had seen to a blaze so we checked it out thoroughly.


We even checked holes where it seemed like someone had set up some rocks but it was only mother nature smiling.


upstream a little bit further, we came across a small pool area that had paw markings and some fur caught on logs and branches.  


further yet, there was a small waterfall that went into a deep pool.  I took a stick and jabbed it down into the hole.  Right in the center, it made a hollow sounding thud whereas all around the sound or the stick hitting rock was solid.  I’m not one to think that Indulgence is at, near, or under a waterfall so I wrote it off as whatever.  But then I started thinking about it and I knew that I had to make sure so that I could sleep at night.  So I removed my clothing and went into the frigid water.  I was not mistaken that there was a reason for the hollow sound.  Somehow a flat piece of shale or fieldstone was resting on top of other stones making the four walls and a roof.  While climbing out of the small pool in the buff, I realized that a thin layer of clothing makes one a lot more confident in the wild than perhaps it should.  I hastily put on my coat of armour and with the dignity it provided, we decided to head back.  It was at this moment (again) that I found the remains of another creature.  I do not venture to guess what beast this once belonged but I will leave the picture for you to judge for yourself.


So listen all and listen well we did not find what Forrest hid.  However, by going on this adventure with the love of my life, I have treasure abundant.  If either of these stories helps you find the treasure, good for you.  I don’t know that we will go out searching again for this particular thing as there is so much adventure in this world, it seems a shame to dwell in one place too long but then again as we are all different, so are our goals and ambitions.  

Good Luck to All,


If you have any questions or comments, please ask away but know that a speedy response isn’t a guarantee.





Scrapbook Two Hundred Nine…


October, 2019


IMG 3589a

Chaos                                                                                                             photo by Cynthia Meachum

IMG 3588a

Embroidery                                                                                                    photo by Cynthia Meachum

I love these two objects.

They found their way into my collection via a friend of many years past.  Are they soul fairies bred in chaos, demoted angels, nascent beings – what? Their exaggerated personalities are somehow persuasive to me. Why is that?

Both are wrought with a penchant for trickery. Maybe it’s because their armatures are made of spring wire. When I push one away, it comes leaning back at a nervous angle, as if were ordained to taunt me – or protect me. 

Look at their faces, each has an eerie diabolical grin as if is possessed by some unknown seminal moment. Their clothing is made of spangly materials, luscious forested vegetation, and woven woolen fabrics from around the world. Ancient beads adorn their necks while silent fetishes secret themselves beneath the understated colors.

Everything on their bodies is sewed in or tied down. Nothing can be removed, not even an ancient Afghani turquoise necklace that rests amid a cluster of old beads and precious amulets.

Doll 1

Chaos Full Frontal                                                                                        photo by Lou Bruno

Doll 2

Chaos Full Back                                                                                                   photo by Lou Bruno

Doll 3

Chaos Front Bottom                                                                                                photo by Lou Bruno

Doll 4

Chaos Front Top                                                                                                    photo by Lou Bruno

Doll 5

Chaos Back Top                                                                                                     photo by Lou Bruno

aaaa copy

Embroidery Full Frontal

Have they been thrown out and are now suffering amidst the wreckage of failed marriages? I don’t know, but never mind, I like them as they are. I can relate somehow, especially now that I am past middle age and unwilling to postpone or subjugate any part of my life. Maybe they have the power to protect me and that’s why I keep them close. I hope so. f




Beaver Creek…

October 2019

By A&M


I learned of  Forrest’s treasure hunt earlier this year and became hooked on it not so much for the money (although that’s what draws people and makes it competitive) but for the challenge of solving the puzzle and being the person to find the dang thing.

I’ll just quickly go over how my wife and I chose our Beaver Creek solve but know that the Cabin Creek / Cub Creek solve was using very similar logic.

Of course this thing could be anywhere that Mr. Fenn has suggested.  However, it would be difficult to convince me that there is a better WWWH than Madison Junction.  The preponderance of thermal hydrogeological water features of the world flow down the Firehole and Gibbon rivers.  When the two come together to form the Madison they move further from the geysers and hot springs.  Add to that the fact that Madison Junction was the origin point or birthplace of Yellowstone and you could see how it would be a good spot to “Begin It….” From there I am not as sure of my solve but here goes.  We took the Madison Canyon down by car as it was too far to walk.  

Put in below the home of Brown:

Ok so I am not in love with the idea that Hebgen Lake is the home of Brown.  Sure there are Brown trout there but they are up and down the Madison from there as well.  Because the lake tilted from the earthquake in 1969, one of the banks was brown from exposed soil without vegetation but that didn’t last forever.  What drew me to this answer may make some laugh but I think it also ties to a story in TTOTC.  When Mr. Fenn talks about sliding down that rusty fire escape slide from Spanish class, he adds that it left the bottom side of his pants brown but it was worth it.  You can’t get to close to it anymore as I imagine you could bet back in Fenn’s day but where Hebgen spills over to reform the Madison, the overspill is a slide of sorts.  You can see the end of the “slide” from Hwy. 287 near Big Wig Loop but to get a better idea of what I’m talking about, look at it from Google Earth.  Anyway, for our purposes this is the home of Brown Damnit so lets put in.

From there it’s no place for the meek:

So I’m not one of those people who is counting every vowel in every line and thinks that this means something astrological or that Fenn was thinkig on so many levels that you need to know 5 different Native American languages to solve this thing.  That said, I don’t see why the word “meek” keeps being misconstrued to mean “less than brave” or “afraid”.  The word means quiet.  It can mean weak as in “easy to convince to change mindset or opinion”.  But I think lets just go with simple.  No place for the meek is no place to be quiet.  You don’t want to be quiet in bear country unless you want to meet a bear.  In Grizzly Bear country, you don’t want to meet a bear period.  Add to that it rhymes with creek and there’s your meek.

So we drove up USFS Rd. 985 that runs adjacent to Beaver Creek.

The end is never drawing nigh;

There’ll be no paddle up your creek,

Just heavy loads and water high.:

I’ve heard the “nigh” equals left idea but I think he’s looking for a word that rhymes with high.  There will be no paddle up your creek means walk up a creek that is very small and obviously unnavigable.

So, with that, our idea was to walk up the West Fork of Beaver Creek which, yes is a fork that enters from the left hand side when one is charting a path up Beaver Creek proper.  We parked at the West Fork trailhead and began hiking.  I am very aware that Mr. Fenn has said that Indulgence is not near a human trail but when you are out there, in order to get away from the road, the only logical solution to enter nature is to take a trail or to start walking in the creek.  The second option is very slow moving and there are fishermen and women that frequent these creeks but if you think it is hidden where there is a moderate amount of human foot traffic, I have no reason to dissuade you from just walking around in the creeks and look for the blaze.  We chose to take the trails and to look for places to diverge from the trail on our quests.

We started down the trailhead and made it about 3 minutes in before I decided that I would like to change out of my shorts and into jeans.  This trail isn’t well trodden and the growth would have been uncomfortable at the least.  Plus, I figured this to be another layer for the bear to chew through so I would at least get to see the annoyance that the bear would face having to chew through the denim of my trousers to get to my leg flesh.  I imagined that, if I was lucky enough to remain conscious long enough I could see the humorous mouth calisthenics of trying to spit the jeans without fumbling my fibula into the canyon below.  Anyhow, I put on jeans.

We walked approximately 1:45 in stopping at several small mountain streams that resembled washouts.  We walked up and explored a few that would have been great hides including this small waterfall next to a log that looked like it had been burnt. 


We went through a few switchbacks until we came to one, at which point we decided that Mr. Fenn would not have come this far in.  We knew we had at least an hour and fifteen minutes to walk back.  We figured that for an 80 year old this is at least a 3:30 round trip even if you know exactly where you are going and I am not convinced that a man of this age would do it twice in a day.  The unmarked switchback upon which we turned around was the fork at which the hiker would decide to go to the right to go to Avalanche Lake or to the left to go to the triple small lakes.  This junction, and actually the trail in general, was unmarked which is a shame because if we had known that we were that far in, we would have carried on and went up to Avalance to see it.  Oh Well.

On the walk down between scaring off bears with our singing voices, we decided to walk off the trail to see where the west fork met the main Beaver Creek.  When we got off the trail, we began seeing a lot more evidence of animals from trodden grass, moved rocks, and, of course, poop.  We began to get an erie feeling that we were on someone elses land and ignoring the no trespassing signs.  When we saw fresh bear tree markings we felt like we should turn around now lest we make some markings of our own in the aformentioned jeans.  At that thought, I saw a jawbone that turns out is the bottom jaw of an elk.  We decided to take the jawbone home and leave the rest of this elk for some other treasure hunter to find.  


Good Luck To All,






Scrapbook Two Hundred Eight…


October, 2019


Ode to a Friend

edard2 1

Edard and friend

Edard has passed. 

We were close friends for about 83 years. He was my best man when Peggy and I were married in 1953, and I was his best man twice, again after his first wife died of cancer. 

In 1950, Edard and I joined the Air Force together. He was physically imposing, so they made him an Air Policeman. After 4 years he resigned from the military to get a degree in Hospital Management from Baylor University. The doctors at King’s Daughters Hospital in Temple were impressed with Edard so they hired him as their manager, a job his brother, Howard, held before him. 

When Peggy and I threw parties in Santa Fe, Edard would sometimes drive 12 hours to attend. He usually walked in with a smile that insinuated “You must have known I would be here,” a thought that did not underestimated the depth of our friendship.

In recent years Edard’s health fell into disrepair and I watched him slowly wither. He died peacefully in the Veterans Hospital in Temple, on whose golf course we used to play. He well understood that, at age 89, his tenure on this planet was finally fading. 

I shall not mourn the passing of my friend, but instead, will smile and remember the many good times we had, like when we both played big shots in a high school football game, and put plugs of Red Man chewing tobacco under our cheeks. After the first tackle we both were sick and had to leave the game. Our punishment was having to run 50 laps around the football field. We turned that penalty into a victory by running 55 laps. We sure taught that coach a lesson. Those were the good old days when our victories were small enough to match our egos. 

Keen are those whose eyes were used and saw the total fruit he bore, and remember yet, whose dyes were used to make the pride he wore. 

And now my life is a little emptier. 

An asterisk. 

Frank Harlan (RIP) was another close high school friend who joined the AF with me and Edard. His father, Dr. “Dipok” Harlan, delivered me in the King Daughter’s Hospital in Temple. That was August 22nd, 1930. I am told I was born to politically off-set George Soros, who came along 10 days before me. 

Now I think I will go out and water my trees. f