by Jake Gavin
Recently on a warm summer night in the sparsely populated far North Phoenix community of New River, neighbors were awakened by an explosion that destroyed a large metal building belonging to a neighbor, Charlie Pogue.
Charlie lived alone in a doublewide near his shop on 10 acres. Had 480 three-phase power brought in back in the ‘80s.
Not well known by neighbors. Kept to himself. Moved to New River back when it was mostly vacant desert. Nowadays there are shopping centers and pricey new homes within easy driving distance.
Charlie had long ago given up on people. Details about his life are hard to come by. Some that sold him unusual equipment remembered him. Always paid cash.
UPS drivers remember seeing several older cars and trucks around the place. Many remembered Charlie being friendly.
Used his early ‘60s Chevy pickup mostly. A neighbor commented that he had once seen a ’50s-something Buick sitting near the shop.
They can’t find Charlie.
They did find in the rubble the remains of lots of unusual parts: truck batteries, large generators, transformers, and some really big capacitors.
In the doublewide there were piles of receipts of what appeared to be an odd assortment of parts and equipment dating back decades. On the walls were photos and newspaper clippings about his father.
Shortly after the explosion, NASA picked up a curious signal from an unknown source on the surface of Mars, not too far from the Rover’s then current location.
“This is Charles Nelson Pogue, Jr. of New River, Arizona. I have teleported myself to Mars. And, no, I will not share how I did this. I don’t want company. Besides, you wouldn’t believe me anyway.”