El Deora, CA. August 1977

In spite of the fact that the vast majority of the Central Valley was as flat as a regulation pool table, the engineers who built this road had chosen the gently undulating hills in the western side. They carved slots through the soft, featureless peaks and filled in the soft, featureless depressions until they had built up a runway-straight, 4-lane pointer to either horizon. On this day however, there was no horizon. The heat rising from the hot asphalt reflected the featureless sky beyond until the road simply vanished in the haze of the featureless distance. Fata morgana.

The blacktop directly at our feet now had a fair amount of blood from where Danny had cut his hand pretty bad on the blown out steel belted radial. The spare had both tread and air. Unfortunately, the wheel it was mounted on was for a Chrysler and that Mopar rim was not going to play nice with the hub on Roy's '65 Continental. The tow truck driver gave us the news. Elvis was dead. Overdose, he said. ...

77 El Deora
Oblique Americana: a verbis ad verbera
Jenn Courtney and Maurice Tani examine the battle of the sexes from the streets of Bakersfield to the South of Market. Intelligent, original, neo-noir honky tonk in the classic rhythms and themes of western America.