Mail Order Joe

The cranky cockatoo criticizes Sheriff Joe's new jail mail policy, and agitates the agitators at last week's kooky counter-protest

Then along came Prop 201 last November, and the whole state went pussy on this pelican. By 55 percent, AZ's electorate approved the tobacco smack-down, outlawing the fiery enjoyment of that aromatic leaf in all public places such as taprooms and eateries. The exceptions: veterans halls and Indian casinos. Otherwise, you've gotta light your fag on a patio, if the establishment has one (a patio, that is), or stand 20 feet from any entrance while you puff that butt. Reminds this wild turkey of that crack from cross-dressing Brit comic Eddie Izzard about CA's smoking ban: "[There's] no smoking in bars now, and soon, no drinking and no talking."

Anyway, The Bird decided to mosey on down to two of its fave spots this past First Friday to see how these formerly smoky saloons were handling the new legislation. First stop was Bikini Lounge, where future emphysema patients like DJ Shane Kennedy were fuming on the sidewalk, while the coolios and hipsters who always make the First Friday scene were jammed inside, breathing smoke-free air.

"Smoking is all part of the experience of hanging out at some dive bar," explained butt-head Kennedy. "Without it, it's like sex without an orgasm."

Fred Harper

Makes this magpie recall that joke from Woody Allen’s Manhattan:

Party guest: "I finally had an orgasm, and my doctor said it was the wrong kind."

Isaac Davis: "You had the wrong kind? I've never had the wrong kind, ever. My worst one was right on the money."

Protectors of public safety might as well ban other sinful activities such as unprotected fornication, overeating, drinking and driving, tweaking, or snorting cocaine. Hey, wait a sec: The last three are already illegal. Heh, you get the idea. How're we gonna have any fun if all the good stuff is verboten?

Near Kennedy, Ryan Piscitelli, a scraggly 24-year-old musician and illustrator, was equally p.o.'d as he lit up outside with his hottie girlfriend, Sam Cordova.

"This is killing me. It wounds my very soul that I'm sitting inside there and I can't have a cigarette with my beer," peeped Piscitelli. "If you're really concerned about your health, what're you doing in a bar in the first place?"

Piscitelli and Cordova also kvetched about the voting apathy of their fellow smokers.

"Young people and smokers especially should've gotten out and voted. When I went to vote, I was surrounded by geriatrics. I had to shower for 45 minutes to scrub the smell of Ben-Gay off," quipped Piscitelli.

Over at the News Room, a hole right out of some short story by boozer scribe Charles Bukowski, the drag of taking a drag al fresco wasn't the only thing under discussion, as owner Pete Palandri revealed he'll be closing the downtown mainstay this Saturday after 26 years, selling his joint to developers. Scuttlebutt is this scurvy dive, with its pool tables, stark interior, and pinball machines circa 1980, will end up being torn down for condos or some ASU building. Sigh . . . is nothing sacred?!

Palandri was equally upset about the smoking ban and claimed it doesn't bode well for any bar.

"It's a pain in the ass," squawked Palandri. "Applying for patio permits and everything. The rules and regulations won't work for every joint. A patio wouldn't work for me because I don't have the room. Contractors are just gonna get richer off of this."

Palandri also took time to berate some of the smokers outside, saying "I guess you lazy fucks didn't get out and vote."

Palandri's point is well-taken. Plus, it just ain't the same driving home from a night out without that magical reek of stale ciggies all in your feathers. Suddenly, Phoenix and all of AZ is a lot less Kool.


To paraphrase Mick Jagger, this migrant-lovin' macaw went down to the demonstration May 1, to get its fair share of abuse.

The demo in question was actually the counter-demonstration to the big pro-immigrant march that drew about 15,000 people to Wesley Bolin Plaza last week. As much as this heron's heart was with those shouting "Si se puede," or "Yes, we can," in Spanish, this avian loves agitatin' agitators more. So it flew straight to the extremist picnic for United for a Sovereign America, a local anti-immigrant rights org.

There, under a big tent, skinheads, rednecks, and senior citizens alike lined up for apple pie and ice cream after signing up for the latest anti-Mexican legislation. U.S.A. kingpin and Kia-titan Rusty Childress was present, but generally avoided chatting with this chestnut-rumped warbler, scurrying away whenever The Bird approached.

Others weren't as shy. Gabby Hayes-lookalike and crippled Vietnam vet Buffalo Rick Galeener scrambled up, pointed at this tweeter's chest and screamed at the top of his hoarse voice: "Liar! Liar! This [bird] is a liaaaaaaaar!"

Asked what this loon lied about, Galeener said he didn't have a New Times in front of him, and so couldn't answer. Galeener's life is devoted to going to every anti-immigrant event possible, and it's hard not to feel pity for the coot, no matter how obnoxious his views.

Speaking of obnoxious, nearby, a snaggle-toothed biddy named Harlene, carrying a jumbo-sized Good Book, informed this egret (regarding illegals) that "the Lord said we are to keep man's laws," no doubt referring to the Jesus Christ quote "Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's."

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When is someone going to do something about that idiot, Sheriff Joe?? He's out of control. After he was not found negligent in the Tent City beating, I have to now question our judicial system. Kinds of makes you wonder....


I wish Sheriff Joe was the head of Homeland Security.

cactusman, One thing you can say for sure: The vast majority of those pouring over our southern border are not patriots from Mexico, Columbia, Brazil, or other countries.

Instead of demanding reform in their homelands they took the easy way out. I have empathy for their situation, but they garner no respect from me by turning tail and fleeing north. Most of them are men - who left their women and children behind. No - they get no respect from me at all. I consider them cowards.


You people don't realize it do ya?

This sheriff is just focusing in on matters non-relating to his real job as a police top dog. Who is he trying to fool?

Of course, the American people he wants to keep happy by going against illegal immigrants -thats the only way he can make someone happy- and not going against the real criminals such as drug-dealers, gang-members and other trash.

Arpaio GET TO WORK ... do your real job


i'm interested in the anti-Hispanic Hispanic lady. does she think her shit don't stink for some reason? sounds totally like some weird class thing. like, if you have the money to follow all the rules and come here legally you're better than all these wetbacks who are so poor they have to cross the desert to get here! are there other Hispanic like her, i wonder who diss their own people just because they've been here longer or came through accepted channells?


That's Sheriff Joe for ya! This is yet another example of one of his famous, ridiculous publicity stunts; he was overdue. There's no valid reason for this action. His office states it was done for "safety" -- I guess papercuts are running rampant throughout the jail! Heaven forbid that happen.

Peggy Simpson
Peggy Simpson

Well, I'm getting out of Republic of Arizona ASAP. Anyone in the market for a small house in Wickenburg? View (from both sides), horse property, 1.28 acres, Botanical Garden with lush and varied desert plants, 1 mile from town. A real steal at $250K.

Worried American Citizen
Worried American Citizen

I went to the U.S.A. rally last week just see how many other concerned citizens like myself would have the guts to show up and let their concerns about the future of this country be known if only in their numbers but they did'nt because they don't want to be called racists,skinheads,idiots or any of the other derogatory names the open borders crowd hangs on them. Just like the smokers you referred to in your column they're lazyand afraid to be associated with what most liberal mainstream media tells them is an unpopular and unwinable cause. But someday like the smokers they're going to wonder how the hell someone who came here illegaly is now given the same constitutional rights they've always had. but sadly were to lazy to exercise, like the right to disagree with people like you. That jackass Pres. Bush tells us that social security will be broke by 2041 and in the McCain kennedy bill they say that someone can come from mexico and claim they worked in mexico for 8-1/2yrs. and have worked here for 1-1/2yrs. and they are eligible for social security and medicare. An american citizen has to work 10yrs throughout they're lifetime, reach a certain age or become disabled before they're eligible if they're lucky. Which is where I come in, I have been paralysed since 1970 and am now 50yrs. old, I left california 12yrs. ago I saw first hand what a drain on the medical system all these poor illegals brought about. With so many americans now being screwed out of they're pensions and medical coverage tell me how the hell we can afford to bring millions of mainly low wage earning people onto social security and medicare they're not getting any younger either. Maybe if they demanded the same so called rights in they're country as they are here things would be better for they're entire nation and not just themselves but I guess thats the whole point bring em' all right. I don't know if you have children but, if the teacher came to you and said Mr. Birdbrain you're chicks are'nt stupid I just do'nt have the time I need to teach all of these poor illiterate non english speaking children or your children a decent education.But I'm sure that you would gladly let childrens education suffer, since they really don't need it anyhow because it seems like the only jobs we have left in this country are jobs AMERICANS won't do right. Keep on sticking to Sheriff Joke and Janet from another planet. I look forward to seeing this posted you might be surprised someone might agree with my opinion, for the record I do not believe in mass deportation or mass amnesty a little common sence would be nice though.


Ha-ha! "The Mexicans didn't shhot it off." Keep fucking with these pricks. They deserve every smack you give 'em. Just moved to the valley, and these sorts of people disgust me. Why don't they get a life? A: They have none, just like Buffalo Patty there, or whatever his name is.

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