Posted by: Brad Nixon | January 29, 2018

To the Beach for the Sun, the Sand, the Surf, the Giant Chicken

There’s nothing more marvelous these winter days (or almost any day) than to stroll along the beach as the sun settles lower and the light wanes.

Redondo Beach Brad Nixon 9125 (640x466)

Although it’s an oft-expressed truism, one remarks again and again how the surface of the ocean constantly changes appearance. The angle of the sun, direction of the wind and sea swell, the presence or absence of clouds can color the water a thousand shades of blue, purple, green or gray. It can reflect the light with the brilliance of a mirror.

Ocean light Brad Nixon 1214 (640x468)

As some previous writer may have observed, it can also seem as dark as wine.

A nearly-deserted stretch of sand at this time of year can have an appeal all its own.

Redondo volleyball Brad Nixon 8666 (640x491)

Recently we walked at street level on top of the bluff above Redondo Beach. Beach level, where we usually walk, is about 100 feet below. There, closer to the water, you make your way toward the pier.

Redondo Beach Pier Brad Nixon 3044 (640x414)

Up on the bluff that evening was a lively scene. The sidewalk was full of couples, families, people walking their dogs, people carrying their dogs, dogs walking their people. Many of the parking spaces were occupied, with people sitting in their cars, waiting to catch the sunset. We are all, as Ishmael observes at the beginning of Moby-Dick, water-gazers.

Palos Verdes ocean Brad Nixon 1180 (640x479)

The street, as always, was busy, too. Here in car-crazy southern California, the beach is a car magnet. Spiffy Ferraris and Maseratis cruise by; so do big, bruiser SUVs large enough to deliver S.W.A.T. teams (though usually carrying only one or two people). You might see a vintage Mustang, Corvette or the occasional GTO. This is Beach Boys territory, after all.

Enter the Chicken Coupe

Then, a noteworthy appearance. Does something like this exist only in America? I don’t know, but how many cars like that can there be in Finland or Slovenia?

Chicken Car Brad Nixon 9127 (640x410)

We are, after all, the nation that gave the world the Wienermobile.

IMG_1965 Brad Nixon (640x453)

Advertising doesn’t have to resemble fine art to be effective. “Good” advertising gets attention (and presumably moves you to buy something). Although the chicken coupe grabbed my attention, the diet here at Under Western Skies doesn’t include what they’re promoting with that automobile, and I won’t bop up to Hermosa Beach to find out if, indeed, it’s the “Best chicken around.” I took a picture and moved on. Nearly time for sunset. The last, low light on the sand with the peninsula looming beyond was as compelling as a giant chicken.

PV Peninsula Brad Nixon 9132 (640x480)

The beach at sunset and a large, mobile chicken. The sublime and the, um, not-so-sublime. Another day in California.

© Brad Nixon 2018


  1. You know, there’s a giant egg in Mentone, Indiana to go with that chicken car :-). It used to be the capital of egg production, alas, now a dying little community.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I see it there along Main Street. Fort Wayne is about as close as I’ve been to Mentone. Another classic bit of Roadside Americana. Looking around the map, I see the Bell Memorial Library and the Bell Aircraft Museum, leading me to learn that the founder of Bell Aircraft was born in Mentone. More to see in the word than time allows. Thanks a lot.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The gauche-mobile MAY have a certain temporary eye catching quality about it. But, would you EAT there??? 😆

    Some are born with good taste. Some acquire it over time. Others never quite get it. 🧐


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