Hot hot Arizona, stubborn obituaries



Phoenix broke a record on April , though we can't imagine anyone celebrated the event. The temperature climbed up to 105 degrees -- six degrees hotter than the previous record for that day.


A recent paid obituary in the Denver Post for a man named Michael "Flathead" Blanchard made for some delightful reading. "Weary of reading obituaries noting someone's courageous battle with death, Mike wanted it known that he died as a result of being stubborn, refusing to follow doctors' orders, and raising hell for six decades. … He enjoyed booze, guns, cars and younger women until the day he died." He also said that "so many of his childhood friends that weren't killed in Vietnam went on to become criminals, prostitutes and/or Democrats. He asks that you stop by and re-tell the stories he can no longer tell." But it's probably best to leave all children under 18 at home, the obituary advised, because of the "adult material" they might hear.


Robert Biggs, 69, encountered both an unfriendly lion and an unexpectedly altruistic bear in the mountains above Whiskey Flats, in northeastern California. Biggs had been quietly observing the bear and her cubs, when suddenly the lion sprang at him, crunching his backpack and shredding the skin on his left arm. Much to his amazement, the bear ran up and pulled the lion off Biggs "during a wild 15-second scuffle," reports the Paradise Post. Then "the mountain lion bolted and the bear returned to her cubs before they moved on." 

Tips and photos of Western oddities are appreciated and often shared in this column. Write [email protected]

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