Posted: May 10, 2005 3:33 am
J. Ross Browne, a wandering journalist, visited Tucson in the late 1850s and had this to say: "Tucson was a place of resort for traders, speculators, gamblers, horse thieves, murderers and vagrant politicians. Men who were no longer permitted to live in California found the climate of Tucson congenial to their health. If the world were searched over I suppose there could not be found so degraded a set of villains as then formed the principal society of Tucson. Every man went armed to the teeth, and street fights and bloody affrays were of daily occurrence. It was literally a paradise of devils."
and so I examine some of the high points of this place which does not have too much going for it (including locations, for those of you who might find yourself here for some god forsaken reason; and photos for those of you lucky enough to never come here)
a 20' Paul Bunyan statue on the corner of Glenn/Stone ave that gets dressed up like Santa/a ballerina for xmas/halloween
a full bar in a Denny's restaurant Broadway/Wilmot
Sonoran style Hot Dog carts all over the place
big giant archetype cactus / coyote vs. roadrunner cartoon land
El Tiradito shrine, right next to El Minuto Café downtown. The story is that back in the late 1800s a philandering railroad worker was caught by a cuckolded husband and was chopped to pieces for his troubles. To add insult to injury, the husband then scattered those pieces along the Southern Pacific tracks leading to Mexico, thus leading to the name El Tiradito, "the little castaway," and, ultimately, to the only shrine devoted to a sinner in the entire Southwest.
a bar/hamburger joint named after and run by sub genius followers, Bob Dobbs ...5th/tucson
The Garden of Gethsemane between the Santa Cruz River Walk and the traffic on westbound Congress Street. Created on the river banks in the late '40s to house the religious sculpture of Felix Lucero, it was moved to the current cite in 1971. High stuccoed walls with intermittent wrought-iron grillwork surround concrete renderings of the Last Supper, the Crucifixion, Jesus, Mary and Joseph and others.
the No-Tel Motel ...last remaining seedy hourly motel in town
Broadway Boulevard, just west of Euclid Avenue
and yes the tail rattles when you cross it
The Meet Rack
210 W. Drachman St.
there's a sex room you can take tours of, and you can get branded by the owner if you want drink discounts (maybe not anymore a woman sued him and the case went to People's Court so....) free cigarettes in glasses on the bar, free mystery jukebox (just push some numbers)
plus a damn fine cheeseburger.The owner "God" sleeps in the back
a fine mural I like to stare at outside the local meat packing plant