A VEGAS VALLEY NEWS EXCLUSIVE:
Greetings sports fans and welcome as always. As very few of you surely know this column started life as Valley News Sports Beat. My stated intentions for the column at that long ago-far away time of January 30th were to cover sports, travel, entertainment, and special events in and around Las Vegas.
A wise man once said if you want to hear God laugh just tell Him your plans.
That certainly manifested itself as a truth not to be taken lightly on Valentine’s Day when shortly after posting my review of the Mountain Springs Saloon I caught the alert to the active school shooter in parkland. I forwarded it to my editor-in-chief, Mark Satorre and he dropped it back in my lap with an order to write it up. The next 24 hours were a mite harried, to say the least.
Since then my beat has expanded from anything local or inter/national. Now it’s at a place where I can cover whatever I choose to when I choose to so if you’re looking for the box scores my good friends at William Hill sports book can accommodate your every sports-related need I assure you. Works for me anyway.
The past 4 1/2 months writing for Vegas Valley News has been the experience of a lifetime that happened during a dream that came true. I never would have thought I would wind up writing for a media outlet of any note but Mark gave me a shot, I took it, and Bob’s your Uncle.
It was this progression of this column then that took me and my dear friend Jim, who is an expert horseman up into the Cold Creek region of the Spring Mountains around Mount Charleston early Saturday morning.
The BLM was starting an emergency roundup of an estimated herd of 470 wild horses due to their overpopulation of the 102,000-acre range they roam. Locals in and around Cold Creek had expressed concerns that the BLM was wrong in their assessment of the horse’s condition relative to their environment and availability of food and water.
We were both concerned to know the truth of the matter one way or the other but only for the sake of the herd. All other considerations being secondary at best. My report on what I found is available here.
On our way back home I asked Jim to stop at a rock formation which we’d passed on the way in so I could get a picture of it. I’m one of the more dedicated rockhounds I guess. Whether it’s I’m picking up a cool little stone or climbing the face of El Capitan a rock’s a rock to my mind and these monoliths looked really cool but we didn’t stop the first time by and I was unable to get a shot of them as we went past in the RZR.
I got my picture and we took a couple shots of one another and the buggy in front of the larger of the two monoliths and then we went on home.
It wasn’t until much later that I sent the picture in a text message to some kids I sponsor in Holland and Africa that I noticed there was something rather odd about the rock formation that I had taken the picture of. It seemed to be looking back at me.
The more I looked at it the more it looked like a man sitting in on the ground looking back over his shoulder at me. I opened the photograph in Paint where I could magnify the image and that’s when I got the shock of my life. It was a man looking back at me over his shoulder.
As I examined the stone it became clear that someone had spent a great deal of time and energy and turned this once weathered and eroded monolith into a sculpture of monumental proportions.
I named him, Groot after the character of the same name from The Guardian’s Of The Galaxy movies. (for what should be obvious reasons to other fans of those movies) And then I called Mike Sullivan the Geologist and CEO of Nevada Geo-Tech in Pahrump and he said bring Groot to see him in the morning.
Mike took one look at Groot and said yes it is really a sculpture and he said this was a certainty. This morning I found this email from Mike in my inbox.
From: Michael Sullivan <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: Charles Ramos Jr <email@example.com>
Sent: Tue, May 15, 2018 1:45 pm
Subject: Re: Groot
The plot thickens.
Whoever, whatever, however, why-ever this sculpture was crafted the world might never know the answers to. How is it that those modern cuts on Groot’s shoulder blade came to be there and was the whole thing done by modern methodology as well are questions that Groot is surely going to raise amongst archaeologists, geologists, Native Americans, and artists alike. Just to name a few.
Groot stands approximately 45 feet tall so why you may very well wonder has nobody ever seen him before? How should I know? I took the picture and didn’t see him when I was standing there taking it. Up close to Groot you cannot see him. All you see is a weatherbeaten rock monolith. He is very well camouflaged. He looks just like a rock.
For many years to come people are going to be scratching their heads over this monument and many many folks I’m sure are going to be kicking themselves in the rear-end for not seeing him before. There I am smoking out on his arm without the first clue of what is above me.
Because not only is he sitting in the middle of a national park he’s sitting in the middle of a national park road. The road has a fork in it and both forks go around him. Most human beings anymore never look up and they zip past Groot every day on dirt bikes, 4-wheeler’s AYV’s, Jeeps and whatnot. Some folks must stop and look at the rock formation every now and again. Surely many pictures have been taken of him in the past and yet nobody has ever noticed him sitting there.
Until now that is.
I saw him sitting there but had I not taken that picture Groot would still be sitting there watching the tiny happy people zipping past him. I saw him and I claimed him, and I named him.
HE IS, GROOT.
As he is sitting in a national park already that makes this even easier. I have said it now several times online on Twitter and on Facebook and it is my prerogative as the discoverer of this monumental sculpture to take the initiative and give it to the people of America for a national monument dedicated to the Peoples of the First Nations.
I hereby move the Governor of Nevada, the Honorable Mr. Brian Sandoval and the Nevada state legislature to second this motion that President Donald Trump should declare this national monument by executive order. (Doing best Captain Piccard) Make it so #1.
He is Groot.
Wastelo. It is good.