Sunday, March 24, 2013


The noon day sun shone through a skylight in the back room of the newly opened "Twice Told Coffee House" on Bardstown Road near a new clothes shop called "Grateful Threads." Two more of our city's recent tips of the hat to Bohemian culture.

A sunbeam bounced off walls covered with enlarged book covers of titles like "Dharma Bums," by Beat generation icon Jack Kerouac, and a drawing of William Burroughs, the author of "Naked Lunch." Then it landed directly on the bald, bespectacled head of Allen Ginsberg, the poet largely responsible for the literary movement that spawned those books and writers.

In Louisville for the first time, as the guest of U of L's "Thinker Review," the author of the revolutionary "Howl" and over 30 other books sat surrounded by about a dozen admirers, including his "Thinker" hosts, who invited him to teach and recite at the college.

It was part of a "literary explosion" that "Thinker' editors Ron Whitehead and Kent Fielding say is going on in the Louisville area.

As Ginsberg a vegetarian meal of beans and rice, a choice necessitated by his diabetes and recent heart failure, Ginsberg, a long time  human rights activist, talked about censorship, politics and the state of the world.

"It seems like the fundamentalists and neo-conservatives are trying to  reimpose some kind of Stalinist mind control," he said. "They use the same language in attacking what they call corrupt art or dirty art or individualistic art."

What motivates people like Helms?

"I think it's some kind of authoritarian impulse. They just want to be mind dictators. Jesse Helms is always talking about homosexuals. He's obsessed with the subject. He's always waving dirty pictures around. His relation to the gay scene is that he wants to be the dominator, the sadist...humiliating the passive partner. So he's the pervert."

What about the Republican party, Dan Quayle and their stance on family values?

"Quayle is a prig and a draft dodger. Phyllis Schlafly's son is gay. Ronald Reagan's son his gay. The Reagans hardly ever went to church unless it was politically obvious and expedient. When George Bush was head of he CIA, he payed off Noriega knowing full well he was a drug dealer. So the whole family values thing is just hype, a con, a scam."

If these politicians are so bad, why did the American people put them in office?

"Most everybody gets their information from television. And at this point, most public media is owned by 20 or 30 people. So it's like an oligarchy that's really determining what's emphasized in the news."

Do you think that people at the university level realize what's going on?

"Yeah, I think so. I think that everybody knows it. And there may be a reaction with Bill Clinton. But I don't think Clinton is going to be much of an improvement except on the culture front. Reagan and Bush have dug the United States into such an economic hole, I don't think we are ever going to get out of it. We're going to lose the planet in the next 100 or 200 years anyway."

Only a hundred years left?

"A couple hundred. I don't think there is going to be an explosion or an apocalypse. I think just a slow, sluggish gridlock. A Chernobyl here, a hurricane there, an ozone hole here or a weather change there."

Any advice for young people today?

"It depends on what field they are in. If they want to be scientists, I'd say try and help to find some clean energy substance. Besides over population, I think the use of fossil fuel is our biggest problem."

What about the liberal arts? Are people going to be reading anymore or writing books? Is poetry still going to be important?

"Yeah, sure. When they pull the electric plug there will still be books. And when the books rot or the libraries lose their lights, the only thing that will be left are singers like Robert Johnson and Bob Dylan. And they'll be considered the great poets because they will be stuck in memory."

So saying, Ginsberg scrawled a token of his appreciation, a symbolic sketch of a goddess figure surrounded by a circle representing the life cycle. At the bottom he drew a skull.

"Existence contains suffering," quoth a departing Ginsberg.

"So if you're not afraid of suffering, you can be happy. If you are afraid of suffering, then you are going to surround yourself with chemicals, TV sets, skyscrapers and atom bombs and make it worse."

by Danny O'Bryan

The Louisville Eccentric Observer (LEO) magazine


Monday, March 18, 2013

Danny O'Bryan's Louisville Jazz Blog

Louisville jazzman Mike Tracey is always teaching it or playing it

    Remember the old 1950s stereotype of a jazz musician?

    He was the guy who hung out in bars getting strung out on a reefer - or worse - while playing his instrument, usually a saxophone, and grooving to its sensuous, sinful sounds.

    Over the last 20 years, that hedonistic image has been shattered by a new breed of jazzmen (and women) who have been coming out of the nation’s colleges and music schools with a serious and dedicated commitment to their art.

    A case in point is saxophonist Mike Tracy, 33, who is now appearing with the jazz band Chameleon at Howard Johnson’s Greenstreet Tavern, 100 E. Jefferson St.
    Tracy, unlike the 50s stereotype, neither smokes nor drinks, and his goal in life is to ‘become a better person.” He hopes to achieve his goal through playing jazz.

    Tracy, who holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Louisville’s School of Music, has been playing jazz and teaching jazz theory in local high schools and colleges for more than 10 years. Besides being an artist in residence for the Jefferson County School system, Tracy is teaching jazz classes at both the University of Louisville and the University of Kentucky.

    And he does this while holding down a four-night-a-week gig at the Greenstreet Tavern.

    Tracy said his love of music developed early in life. “When I was a kid, my parents kept the stereo on all the time the way most people do the television. We listened to all kinds of music, from classical to big bands.”

    When he was in the fourth grade, Tracy began playing the saxophone. Later, while he was attending Seneca High School, he played in a number of all-state and all-county bands, plus stage bands.

    But it wasn’t until 1970 when he was a student at the University of Louisville School of Music that his jazz mania began. That year he met his mentor, New Albany jazz educator Jamey Aebersold, who was then teaching at U of L.

    “Before I met Jamey, I never really thought about jazz and improvising - but after we met, I knew that’s what I wanted to do,” he said.

    In 1974, when Tracy graduated from college, Aebersold quit teaching full time in order to devote more time to his mail order record business. “I thought that was a perfect opportunity for me to jump in and start teaching because Jamey and I are a lot alike. We both like to teach jazz and be around young people,” he said.

    Tracey said a lot of people have made comparisons between him and Aebersold because they are both thin and have a lot of energy. “But basically we just enjoy doing the same things. I enjoy giving and getting from my students. And I was fortunate that Jamey saw something in me that he could use,” Tracey said.

    Over the last ten years, Tracey has traveled to Nova Scotia, New Zealand and Europe teaching at Aebersold’s jazz camps. “It’s been great and I’ve learned a lot and had the opportunity to teach with great jazz saxophonists like Joe Henderson and Dave Leibman,” he said.

    Tracey is very excited about the new job at the Greenstreet Tavern.

    “I think Chameleon (which includes pianist Glen Fisher, bassist Tyrone Wheeler and drummer Daryl Cotton) has the best rhythm section in town. Our goal is to play good jazz with a lot of variety, everything from fusion to bebop,” he said.

   “Jazz requires you to search within yourself and be inquisitive about things. I’m very busy, but jazz has given me the freedom to look deep within myself and become a better person, a better teacher and a better musician.”

By Danny O’Bryan
Nightlife Columnist - Louisville Times’  SCENE magazine
October 1985

From the up-coming book “Derby City Jazz.”

Friday, February 1, 2013

My 1993 LEO article on the Literary Renaissance


Ron Whitehead and Kent Fielding, co-editors of  "The Thinker Review," a University of Louisville student literary journal, were having a leisurely lunch with the famous Beat Generation poet Allen Ginsberg ("Howl") after his reading at the UL Student Center in October 1992.

Ginsberg commented that is plane was to leave Standiford Field at 2:30 p.m.. "I told him to look at his ticket," Whitehead says. "He pulled it out and it read 1:30."

By then it was 10 minutes to lift-off, so Whitehead and Fielding packed the poet into a car and took off for the airport at 90 miles an hour, disregarding red lights along the way. When they got to the terminal all three jumped out and sprinted toward the boarding gate.

"We'd almost made it when Ginsberg started running away from us. "Whitehead says, "Kent and I both began running to keep up, when suddenly Ginsberg turns around, bends down on one knee and pulls out a camera and takes our picture."

The resulting snapshot, which catches both men in mid-air, arms and feet flying, is emblematic of the frantic pace at which Whitehead and Fielding have operated for the past two years while trying to make Louisville a world literary capital. (Whitehead teaches literature at UL, Fielding is working on his master's degree in   creative writing.)

Last spring after collaborating on the last of three widely praised editions of "The Thinker Review," the dashing duo joined forces with Louisville business man Judah Thornwill to form the "Literary Renaissance,"
a non-profit organization whose ambition is to make Louisville the home base of a global literary community.

Thornwill, 31, owns Integrated Customer Services (JCS), a telemarketing company that specializes in promoting  the arts; it's past clients have included the Louisville Orchestra and Stage One: The Louisville Children's Theatre. Thornwill said that he became involved because he thought what Whitehead and Fielding was doing was unique.

"The volume and variety of things they had already accomplished amazed me," Thornwill says, "I thought this was a once-in-a-lifetime chance for me to lend my expertise to something I really believed in."

In addition to revitalizing the UL student review, Whitehead and Fielding has published numerous chapbooks (small, paper bound editions of poetry) featuring local and national writers; put out "The Dark Woods I Cross," an anthology of Louisville woman poets; and sponsored readings at UL by several world renowned writers, including Ginsberg, fellow Beat poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti and African American poet Amiri Baraka.

Most of the products of the Literary Renaissance - locally produced cds, posters and chapbooks - are aimed at college educated consumers younger than 30 who attend music concerts and poetry "slams", competitive readings.)

One division of the Renaissance, Riche's Lemon Herb Media, records and markets cds - the first being "Omphalos," a wild combination of a  poetry reading by Ferlinghetti, Baraka and several Louisville based poets with music ranging from classical to experimental rock.

Sales of "Omphalos," were brisk during October's 62-hour, Renaissance sponsored "Insomniacathon," featuring 90 poets and 40 bands over three days and nights at the Brewery Thunderdome and Tweligan's Tavern.

Whitehead says he's is happy to leave the marketing to Thornewill.

"It's a good thing that Judah is helping us," he says, "but I don't give a damn about money. All I care about is the generation of the creative spirit, which is the imagination."

(Whitehead and Fielding's lack of concern about money landed them in controversy last year, when their stewardship of "The Thinker Review," left the magazine $5,000 in debt and the two of them in dutch with UL's administration.)

In Whitehead's view the ultimate purpose of the Renaissance is to bring people together.

"When a new poet reads on stage during one of our events, he or she gets the same respect and appreciation as someone who has written six or seven books," he says.
"This is not an elitist organization. We want to be inclusive rather than exclusive."

Ferlinghetti told Whitehead during his visit last spring that "not since the 1950s had he seen such energy and interest in poetry."

Especially that of the Beats. Whitehead and Fielding clearly are fans. They recently read their own poetry at a festival celebrating Beat icon Jack Kerouac ("On the Road") in the writer's hometown Lowell, Mass., and even put a "Insomniacathon" ticket  on his tomb stone. More recently they sponsored a Louisville appearance  by Beat poet/enigma Gregory Corso.

And Rant, the literary journal of the Renaissance, a 12 by 12, 400 page publication due out early next year, reflects a diversity of tastes; it will include the work of writers from South Africa, Ireland, Norway and Kentucky.

The featured artists will include Wendell Berry, Sarah Epstein and Diana Di Prima, whose poem "Rant," provided the journal's name and its anthem, "The only war that matters is the war against the imagination."

Danny O'Bryan
Louisville Eccentric Observer (LEO) 1993

Saturday, January 26, 2013


As I mentioned in an earlier blog I am going through a purgation, a spiritual renewal, a casting out of the devils. The scales have dropped from my eyes. It's now 3 a.m. and I'm back at it after dropping like a rock on-to my new couch (newly acquired furniture is analogous to my present situation) in my studio.

Yesterday I felt like playing my saxophone, which I haven't in months and of course I have been singing every day. Purgation requires it. Also yesterday I ate very little. I'm fasting before Mardi Gras. It doesn't  matter, it has to do with my timing no one else's. Speaking of Mardi Gras my new Mardi Gras wreath came in the mail yesterday and I hung it on my front door. All the way from Louisiana it's bright colored strings of gold, purple and green announce my allegiance to the holiday season. The one that began with twelfth night and ends with Fat Tuesday.

During one of my last purgations several years ago I accumulated the strength to assemble all my old photos in binders along with other memorabilia. I haven't gone through it in years but yesterday I found this written poem in the binder across from  some of photos of my very young mother and me as a toddler:

My darling little Danny boy
you have been here just a year
you've filled my every hour with joy
each day you've grown more dear.

With your eyes which are of deepest blue
and hair with touch of gold
and laughter like a  tinkling bell
you've brought me joys untold.

Each minute of this precious year
has been so full of fun
for mother and for daddy too
your such a darling son.

I know as  each year passes
that you will have to grow
I want to see you be a man
but I love my baby so.

Margaret Shaw O'Bryan - August 22, 1948

Friday, January 25, 2013

Like a Cathedral

"My experience, my passions, my ideas, my images and memories are all I know of this world-
And they are enough. The absurd person can finally say "All is well."

"The purest of joys is feeling and feeling on this earth."

Albert Camus
"The Myth of Sisyphus"

I'm currently going through a cyclical purgation, using the old Catholic term. Gregory Corso said  "Once a Catholic always a Catholic." And he was right. But while I'm tossing my spiritual demons aside, I'm also dealing with more mundane things like cleaning my office loft, which manages to collect tons of detritus from my life-long passions. Latest find, a short poem written by one of my English 101 students at UL in 1996.
I have no idea where the author, Laura Reisser is today but if anyone reading this piece knows her please inform me. I'd like to know how her life turned out 17 year later. I nearly cried reading her beautiful piece this morning. Dig it:

A Trip to New City

My first poem ever, that's what this is.
Well, unless you count the made up versions of  "Roses are Red" or the diamond shaped
poems I used to do when I was a kid.
But now life is not so  rosy.
I just have a few questions.
Why do we work to make money that we won't have in a few weeks and why do we
sleep when we'll only be tired again tomorrow and why do we clean our house when
it's going to get dirty again.
Something keeps us going.
Something gives us the strength to witness things like rape, serial killings, animals
dying in oil spills, car accidents, fires, shootings, bombings, earthquakes, plane crashes.
I almost can't watch the news anymore or even scary movies because they're not so
far from the truth.

And then one time I went to New York city and it made me feel even worse because
just this one city has more people than the entire country of Sweden and it made me
feel so small and insignificant.
My cat is chewing on my pen right now and all I can think about is how lucky she is
because she doesn't even know what kind of world she lives in or maybe even that
she is going to die someday.
She's not afraid.
And in New York city there was never a sign that I was there.
I met lots of taxi drivers but they don't remember me now, and I guess I left some
garbage in my hotel room but I'm sure it's cleaned up by now.
A least in a smaller place you can leave parts of yourself around places.
I get my haircut in Plainview and the ladies there know who  I am and what I look like
and my neighbors recognize my car when I pull in at night and at work I have a desk
with my name on it and at school teachers notice when I'm not there.
But New York city was different.
People were everywhere.
Walking their dogs in Central Park.
And they all have their own story and they all eat and clean and work for the same
reason I do.
And if I were to die today none of these people would notice or even care.
They'll go on doing what they've always done until they die.
So, I guess we are all insignificant.
So what keeps us going?
I guess for some people trying to get to Heaven keeps them going.
But what about people for whom Heaven doesn't exist?
What do they live for?

You know, I guess that's why I like to go to Spain.
I mean, families talk to each other and little kids play in the Plaza Mayor and eat ice
cream and people relax with friends and are true to themselves.
And besides in the United States, what do we that's really that old?
In Spain there are towers and medieval walls and castles and Roman theaters and
cathedrals so beautiful and powerful that when you walk in you can feel centuries and
centuries of souls and spirituality.
Maybe that's why I like to go there.
Because people left things and did things and felt things.
So, it's hard sometimes.
I wish I were a kid again so death wouldn't exist and mommy would fix everything.
And the worst that could happen is that I'd be sent to my room where I'd sit on the
bed by the door and stick my foot out and say, "Look mommy I'm out of my room."
And now that I'm grown up and will someday be a mommy it makes me wonder why
I'd want to bring a life into this world that is so painful and may not even be here in
50 years because someone want to see what happens when you set off a nuclear

But I guess I will definitely have a child because it's an emotion that I don't want to
miss before I die.
So women are lucky because we get to feel something that men never get to.
A new life comes out of your body and you know you're leaving something behind.
Something beautiful and powerful.
Something kinda like a cathedral in Spain.

Laura Reisser

The Freaks, the Wonders in Wonderland!

I had a meeting last night with Ray Smerlin and the "Wonderland" crew. My kind of meeting. In attendance two magicians, two comics, a fire dancer, a contortionist and me. I was in heaven. We're planning to perform singly in multiple venues for up-coming Louisville trolly hops hawking the March 14 "Wonderland" performance. Don't forget, anyone reading this blog is invited to "Mardi Gras at Wonderland," pre-performance party on Sunday - February 10 - 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. at my studio - 3541 Nanz Ave. in Louisville.

To use an old carny line, we will be featuring "the freaks, the wonders, the strange, the unusual people. We are going to whirl you way into the land of mirth magic and mystery!"

So far, my college class is going wonderfully. At our last meeting I think I singed their eye brows with my enthusiasm (en-theos) full of the gods, whatever, it's back and I'm going along for the ride.

They all read their first two page paper on writer Stephen King's "On Writing." King believes that you must be totally immersed in language in order to be a good writer. Passion is the word. He believes this applies to any endeavor, giving the example of his son who wanted to play saxophone but wouldn't put in the hours of practice needed to master the instrument.

The students all read their papers aloud. Good flowing, sweet, enthusiastic prose. Sharing their ideas on King's essay with vigor. Monday we will all meet downtown at Hotel 21 C. I think this is going to be one hell of a  good semester!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Danny O'Day is Back in Wonderland

I haven't had anything really extraordinary to write about in this blog for many a moon. But today something occurred which is worth scribbling about. I have been going through one of my down periods. Months of dullness despite teaching a college class and producing a weekly two hour radio show on the best public radio station in town. This month alone I hosted "Wonderland" a new variety show at the Vernon Club and appeared on WHAS television's "Great Day Live."

But the last two weeks have been amazing. I'm on fire, my creative energy is flowing without cease. Everyone I talk is in the opposite mood, sick with flu or winter depression. On the phone last week I told  my friend, writer Ed Mcclanahan, "I'm flying." He said , "I'm dying." Sick with the flu he wasn't all that eager to hear about my ecstasy.

Maybe it's the recent return of my alter-ego Danny O'Day, the saucy burlesque comic and singer I created and lived as for nearly ten years during the 1970s.

At the time, I was working my way through college with my sights on a "straight job," thinking at the time I could possibly do such a thing, foolish me.

You see, O'Day is back and just like old times will be singing, telling jokes and hosting Ray Smerlin's brand new variety show at the Vernon Club for the second time March 14.

I will be introducing a huge variety of magicians, ventriloquists, dancers, circus acts and artists of all kinds.

But back to my extraordinary experience. I was cleaning out my office loft this morning when I unearthed one of my old journals. I've kept daily journals for years. There is a stack five feet high in one corner of my loft. But this one was by itself, covered by a bag of old Mardi Gras Beads, that's another amazing fact I'll tell you about later.

As I said the journal was by itself on the floor open to the first page, the first entry February 23, 1994. I yelled down to my wife, "What day is it?" She says, "I think it's the 23rd."

I nearly had a stroke. "Something, somebody, somewhere is trying to tell me something!" Then I realized it was still January. I always get mixed up this time a year. But still that's pretty cool. My journal was talking to me, from 21 years ago.

Let's see, I wasn't having a bad time back then. I was acting in a "short silly" play written by a local playwright and had recently attended a benefit for "Kentuckians for the Commonwealth" at writer/teacher Gurney Norman's home in Lexington.

When you keep a journal it's always nice to go back and read what you were doing decades ago.

On a another note, I spent yesterday arranging new furniture in my studio, singing and getting ready for the party I will be giving on Sunday, February 10.

Entitled "Mardi Gras at Wonderland," it will feature many of the musicians, poets, magicians, performers and artists that will be part of Ray Smerlin's "Wonderland," a large variety show that will be held next, we did the first one in January, on March 14.

Stay tuned for more in the mean time "I'm flying." 


Sunday, January 20, 2013

My 1993 Interview with Arlo Guthrie

Arlo Guthrie is back. Not that he ever left, but with the current craze for music and culture of the 1950s and 60s, Guthrie and people like him, Bob Dylan for instance, do appear to be back in the saddle again.

Dylan gave a concert in Louisville just last week and Guthrie brought his long locks and guitar to the University of Louisville on March 27.

Guthrie and I engaged in a sort of extemporaneous dance outside UL Students Activities Center that evening. He had just finished a sound check and was getting a breath of fresh air, when I approached him tape recorder in hand.

The bearded, long-haired Guthrie, who was dressed in jeans, cowboy boots and a patterned shirt, didn't look quite old enough to have been one of the performers at Woodstock.

He insisted on standing throughout the interview, but he answered all my questions thoughtfully and in a refreshing sanguine manner.

What does Guthrie think about the renewed interest in the music and culture of his generation?

"I see it being like a spoke in a wheel. And every time it comes around you hear it. And when you're in a time when you're not hearing it, you look back to the last time you heard it," he said.

According to Guthrie there are times in history when people wake up and become very creative and spontaneous and explore what it means to be a human being.

"But there are also times when other people say well enough with that, we got to get back to selling washing machines," he said.

Does Guthrie think the sixties was one of those creative times?

"Absolutely, if not one of the major times," he said swaying back and forth, the toes of his cowboy boots pointing in one direction and then another.

How do the 1990s differ from the 1960s?

"Wavey Gravy said the 90s were just the 60s upside down. I saw some bell-bottom pants for sale in a store the other day and it scared the hell out of me," he said.

"People talk about the sixties as if it were a decade worth of stuff. But to me the sixties were really between
1967 and 1972. And the real heart of that time was a moment when all of a sudden things changed. And I remember the day. It lasted about three months and that was it," Guthrie explained.

On that day according to Guthrie, a large number of people woke up and began to notice the world around them.

"You could look into somebody else's eyes that happened to be a little awake and it was like one of these monster movies. You knew they were awake. And you could walk up and talk to them. And they could be white, black, yellow, red, or they could be big and fat, skinny or thin.

It didn't make any difference what they looked like or where they came from. They were just people who were a little more awake than everybody else, and they all knew each other, even though they'd never met. And it lasted for about three months," Guthrie said.

Why did it end?

"Pretty soon everybody thought well, this is pretty good, whatever these people are doing I want to do it too. And pretty soon people were marketing blue jeans. And then people were saying 'Geez lets make some sheets and wall paper like the stuff they're wearing.' And all of a sudden it became a consumer culture.

And we took something spontaneous and we started to sell it," Guthrie said.

Don't you think that's pretty bad?

"I don't think it's good or bad. It's just the way it is. And I have a kind of criminal instinct to be wary of the way it is, no matter how it is," Guthrie said.

But don't you worry about people becoming zombies like in the move "Night of the Living Dead," getting up every morning and working 9 to 5 jobs, coming home to watch television and never thinking about social issues?

"My dad thought of it this way. He said a certain amount of people are working right now and a certain amount of people aren't. And he said if one of these people stop what they're doing he might have to do it.

"So, Woody Guthrie said 'Thank God that everybody is doing what they're doing. Because that means they're sparing me the job.' We should congratulate each other on the work we do. I'm very appreciative of people who are doing things I would hate to do," Guthrie said.

By Danny O'Bryan

LEO Magazine April 21, 1993

River Tails

When I got to Cox Park today it was already mid-afternoon but the bright winter sun was still high in the sky casting a glorious winter light on the river. I got my two dogs, Rufus T. Firefly and Charlie "Chihuahua" Parker out of my car and headed for the concrete walkway by the river-side only to find it covered with debris and a foot of dirty brown water.

When I turned to make my way up the hill is when I saw them. A large flash of white wings high above the river swirling in the air. Not one but two or three dozen seal gulls. More than  I've seen on my trips to Gulf Shores. Beneath the gulls where at least thirty or forty  mallard ducks floating on the water, some with their heads down and tails up in the air feeding on the bottom. Every now and then a gull would swoop down from the air and land in the river sometimes hitching a ride on a long piece of drift-wood, looking like a feathered captain manning a ship.

I watched the show for a while before moving on down the river bank where I encountered a young woman with a camera.

"I've never seen this many gulls on the river before," I told her. "I saw some people feeding them a little while ago," she said. "I guess that's the reason they congregated here," I thought it might be something more dramatic like global warming." Laughing she agreed pushing her long brown hair out of her eyes. "This is the first time I've been down here because a birding group told me they'd seen a rare, long, necked duck here yesterday."

For a moment I thought she was talking about the "old duck" she was talking to then Charlie suddenly began growling and lurching toward her. "You know, if a large dog had the ferocity of these small ones they'd be like having a "Hound of the Baskervilles," I told her.

"That's true," she said laughing and quickly walking back to her car. I think it was Balzac that said, "Never bring a chihuahua along if you're trying to meet women," lesson learned.

Photo and story by Danny O'Bryan