A scam ? Maybe she was chasing the Tiger on her way to the City of Sin and ran out of gas on this highway in Arizona Photo by Royal Hopper
Chasing the Tiger
By Royal Hopper
Once upon a time .. I was working at a casino on the Midwest, which is kind of like working in at an out door swimming pool in Alaska….I saw a woman walking through the casino moaning like a regretful spirit at the consequences of her life and gambling habit.
The woman moans as she walks _ actually moans as she walks…occasionally looking down at her hands and at the floor and moaning “How am I going to pay the rent?” ,,,
She would take a few steps and then moan again…”How am I going to pay the rent?”
There is an old saying from a western cowboy movie that I have watched several times _ one that is often ignored by fans of the epic telling of this mythic old west heroes and villains ….
“No one forces you to chase the Tiger,” says Wyatt Earp to one of his brothers in a movie dedicated to the Earps and their infamous showdown with a ring of criminal cowboys. The Tiger being a decoration on a gambling game popular in the old west called Faro that drained many a poor cowboy of his hard earned money. The Earps as we all know ran a series of Faro games in casinos in Tombstone Arizona in the Old West. People who kept gambling after they should have stopped were said to be chasing the Tiger. The phrase chasing the Tiger describes the City of Sin to a T.
Tail gating Arizona style at a rest stop between Phoenix and Arizona _ Royal Hopper
Every one has a Tiger _ an inner demon _ an appetite that they chase and hope they never catch….becauase they know in their hearts it will eat them if they do.
This chick chased the Tiger and it caught her ….
I remember riding down some well traveled commuter roadway in the City of Sin and stopping for some traffic jam or another and a spied a man looking down at a small vial in his hand like he was trying to make a hard decision. Right before the jam cleared up and it was time to drive on the man sighed and downed to vial of liquid immediately dropping his hands down to his side in resignation holding the vial in his right hand out of habit before simply letting it fall to the ground.
Arizona style hospitality _ Royal Hopper
Taking another sigh and looking over at me sighing and shrugging his shoulders with a dark acceptance of what he had done.
The traffic moved on and I pressed the accelarator out of habit and as I drove away the man turned and looked out toward the starkly beautiful landscape of the City of Sin and then he faded back into the jumbled neon and asphalt; conrete and sand painting that is the City of Sin.
I often wonder what became of the man. Was that just an energy drink? Was it something more. Was he just trying to stay awake or was he chasing the Tiger waiting for it to catch him????
Phoenix cityscape, Arizona Air National Guard F 16s and a assorted Americana
I have not met a person yet who didn’t have some kind of Tiger he or she was chasing dreading the day it would finally catch him.
That si the great lie of the universe and of the wonderful/horrible city. We think we are chasing the Tiger but maybe it is waiting for us to catch it so it can eat us ….
That my friends is one of the small wisdoms that life in the City of Sin teaches
Love you Sinners
Two people on a street corner _ Royal Hopper
The Glory of talking to strangers or breaking down the walls for a full minute
By Royal Hopper
On a corner in the City of Sin you see a collection of people waiting for the light to change on a pedestrian cross walk. A man in a suit stands next a chick in a psychedelic jump suit/ sun dress and a dirty unshaven troglodyte dressed in yesterdays tossed away relics.
Suit guy stands heads down scanning a newspaper of some kind _ his outfit the very model of precision and social camouflage. His movements are sparse and necessary nothing more.
The psychedelic chick scans her cell phone flipping her carefully groomed purple hair her crystal pendant jumping and skipping across her neck as she does. She moves as if every gesture has some cosmic significance chosen by fate.
The scruffy character stares out at something in the distance lost in his own world and the beauty if mother nature.
All three occasionally look up at the red neon hand telling them it was not safe to cross and all looked impatient to stalk back into their individual worlds.
A flag on the ground lays where it fell off a truck or SUV or wheelchair on a Sin City byway Boulder Highway. An accident I’m sure but strangely appropriate for today’s world _ Royal Hopper
Absent mindedly pointing out something he read in the paper the suit guy quickly slips back into his metaphoric world when something psychedelic chick says with equally absent minded automaton like grace catches his ear. Scruffy guy pulls himself out of his unique trance and says something that catches both of their ears and soon three people who have never met and would likely never given a second thought to the other are having a conversation.
Each says something and each in turn shakes their head in agreement each unconsiously grasping an item like it was a talisman of power..the suit guy clutching his paper like a life preserver and fiddling with his expensive watch…psychadelic chick clutching her crystal and tapping on the screen of her cell phone without thought.
Scruffy guy for his part cannot help occassionally sniffing the air holding a piece of something in his hand, a twig or dried out plat or leaf or rock. What it means to him is just as unclear as what it is but it clearly means something to him.
The conversation becomes more animated each momentarily abandoning their icons to participate in the developing interaction each contributing at their opwn speed and acknowledging the others and chiming in with their own contribution _ not in competition but rather in an impromoptu dialetic.
Cityscapes _ different corners of the City of Sin _ Royal Hopper
They seem freed by the idea they will likely never see each other again ..and the conversation builds in intensity as it continues each actually smiling a bit at the others.
As it reaches a state of genuine friendliness and respect the conversation suddenly comes to a halt. The red hand on the other end of the crosswalk has changed to bright green. It is time to cross to the other side. All seem reluctant but each is in a hurry for some reason and beging stepping out onto the cross walk as they shake hands and promise to meet again and talk _a promise all likely know is doomed but seems the right thing to do …
Vacancy hotel _ Royal Hopper
As they near the other side the psychdelic chick pulls a piece of paper out and scribbles on it tears it in half and hands it to both of her fellow commuters pointing at her phone. Social media can be a wonderful thing says the suit guy his deeper voice filtering across the static city noise. The psychadelic chick smiles as an infectious giggle also pierces the city static and scruffy guy… “All right man …all right ….”
Not a fairy or total bull It is just life in the City of Sin
(pieces of different stories in this city that could be true)
Love You Sinners
People on a corner _ Royal Hopper