On Denver Radio Thursday Morn with Peter Boyles

I will be back on the Peter Boyles show on KNUS AM Radio in Denver on Thursday, October 8, at 9 a.m. EASTERN.

I’m not sure of the topics. I sent him the Public Policy Hooligan outtake on how I almost got arrested hitchhiking the first time I visited Colorado. Or maybe he will want to hear about why almost all the women I met when living in Boston were “pre-lesbian, post-lesbian, or homicidal.”

Or maybe neither of those topics will pop up but I hate to waste a chance to pop in a JPEG. Maybe we will stick with foreign policy like last week’s interview.

You can listen live by clicking here.

The Peter Boyles show is posted on podcast each day. I will do another blog with that link when it becomes available.

FWIW- Here’s the Hooligan Colorado hitchhiking riff

[1979] After a week sampling brews and knocking around Denver with my brother, I headed for California. I caught a bus to the far side of the city and began thumbing on a road leading to Interstate 70, which goes West forever. Five minutes later, I realized that I should be on the other side of the road to snag a ride to the interstate.

As I was crossing the grassy median strip in the center of the four-lane highway, a Colorado state trooper pulled up, flipped on his siren, and started hollering as if he’d caught me throwing bricks at school buses. I might be a scofflaw, but I wasn’t moron enough to thumb in the middle of the road. He took my driver’s license and went back to his patrol car for 15 minutes, perhaps checking if I was wanted for robbing the Federal Reserve Bank in Kansas City. When he returned, he snarled that I’d go straight to jail if I was caught hitching illegally again. The dude’s spiffy Smokey the Bear hat harmonized poorly with his half-sunken face and jaundiced eyes.

The pre-game penalty was not a good omen.

Since my goal was San Francisco, my hitchhiking sign said “Frisco.” I later learned that Frisco was also the name of a town named Frisco 75 miles west of Denver. After I passed that town’s exit, many Coloradans naturally assumed that I was a nitwit on the wrong side of the interstate. Other drivers found different pretexts to presume I was a knucklehead.

Five hours later, I was stuck on a Rocky Mountain peak with snow swirling down and wind blustering through my flannel shirt. It had been sunny and 60 when I left Denver. I never expected to get blind-sided by Mother Nature. And there were no turnpike tollbooths to commandeer.

My snowstorm stakeout was ended by a grizzled 30-ish guy wearing a battered cowboy hat. After I hopped in his old pickup truck and jammed my knapsack by my feet, he gave me a long slow look with faraway eyes buttressed by thick dark eyebrows. “Every person I ever met disappointed me,” he somberly announced. I listened intently as he expounded on the depravity of humanity while racing down snow-covered mountain passes.

Towards the end of the day, two giddy high school girls picked me up and went tearing along a twisting road along the Colorado River. Their hysterical laughter was probably the result of good weed, not my “Frisco” sign.

They dropped me off not far from the Utah border on an exit ramp that was used only by tumbleweeds. The distant buttes arising amidst the serene desert were utterly charming. But solitude and hitchhiking are not a fortuitous combination.

On that stretch of I-70, there was only a lone car or two sailing by every few minutes. So thumbing directly on the interstate would pose no peril to drivers.

I strolled down the entrance ramp and raised my sign on the main drag. The next car that came along had a siren rack on its roof.

The state trooper pulled over and stepped out of his car like a king arising from his throne to smite a miscreant peasant. The trooper glared at me from behind reflector sunglasses and solemnly declared that hitchhiking directly on the interstate was illegal.

“No shit,” I didn’t reply.

I strove to come across ignorant and amiable – the hitchhiker’s recipe for staying uncuffed. In cases where I was clean as a hound’s tooth, I enjoyed giving guff to cops who gave me grief. But, if I was caught dead to rights, then, as Thomas Carlyle wrote, “Sarcasm is the language of the devil.”

He took my license and returned to his car to check what other atrocities I had committed. The next 20 minutes provided me ample time to speculate on the amenities of western Colorado jails.

The trooper returned, paused for dramatic effect, and then sternly warned me not to hitchhike on the interstate again.

“Yes, Sir!”

Since I was leaving Colorado, perhaps he and his supervisors figured: “Good riddance”! Or maybe I was saved because cops have trouble spelling my last name.

I mentioned that there was no traffic on this exit ramp. He allowed that I could walk along the interstate to the last town in western Colorado.

I didn’t see any rattlesnakes on the six-mile tromp to the next exit. I arrived at dusk in Grand Junction, a dusty two-horse town that looked like a Colorado version of Front Royal [my Virginia hometown]. It had taken me 12 hours to slog 220 miles that day. I could straggle thorough Colorado, but there was no way I could muddle like that across the Utah desert, which included a 100+ mile stretch with no exits.

I bee-lined for the first gas station to scarf up the biggest Dr. Pepper they had.

An almost-overloaded small car with an Ohio license plate pulled up to the pump, and a young guy with brown curly hair and horn-rimmed glasses bopped out and started filling up.

“Are you going west?” I asked cheerily.


“Can I catch a ride?”


This guy traveled the country doing the initial hiring and launches for Burger King franchises, and he was heading to San Diego to open another eatery. He had just opened up a joint in Cleveland and was elated to exit Ohio for California. His rock n’ roll cassette tapes blared all night as we sailed past hundreds of intercontinental ballistic missile sites hidden not far off the highway. As he chomped amphetamines, I stayed awake to mutter occasional responses to his fervent riffs about pesky bureaucrats, lazy teen workers, and the travails of his nomad lifestyle. This guy sought out the most pressure-filled challenge and triumphed time after time. He was the type who could turn Death Valley into a tourist Mecca if he set his shoulder to it.

He dropped me off in Vegas at 4:30 a.m., where I dove into a casino’s 99-cent steak-and-egg breakfast…


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