Read excerpts from TIN LIZARD TALES

Bakersfield in the Rear View Mirror...Veils of sagging chain link and raggety razor wire have failed to keep the trespassers out. Spray paint art covers the rusting buildings. I enjoy the fantasy of a long-armed ghost reaching from the gloom and dragging an unsuspecting grafitti artist inside for an ass kicking.

Angel on the Hell Train...Then I see her. She's sitting in a huge wheel chair facing us and she has the face of an angel. She is terribly physically challenged with the body of a small child and the head and face of a beautiful teenager. It's obvious she's a real music lover because she is absolutely beaming at me. I take my headphones off, smile back, and apologize for disturbing her.

Lincoln versus Douglas...Douglas maintained that the Negro was inferior to the white man and was not considered a citizen under the Constitution. "This government was made by our forefathers on a white basis...made by white men for the benefit of white men and their posterity forever, and was intended to be administered by white men in all time to come," Douglas stated. He went on to claim that this meant, under the Constitution, that the "negro is not a citizen, cannot be a citizen, and ought not be a citizen."...In our time, Douglas's position would brand him a racist and probably relegate him to pumping gas, if not to prison.

Arrival in New York City...Here he comes -- the supervisor. He walks into the ticket area like he is walking onto a yacht. His hair strategically dips below one eye; he is sucking on an apricot. You're so vain; you probably think this song is about you. My apologies to Carly Simon because he's actually carrying a Big Grab bag of Fritos and has crumbs all over his sizeable belly."