The back entrance to Waynesville is guarded by Fort Leonard Wood. But the sentry along the east approach is the world’s greatest frog, if size means anything. Sure, to most observers it looks like a giant rock outcropping, but to the tattoo artist who painted the rock green and yellow, it’s a frog. His best side faces the traffic coming downhill on old Route 66. The highway department erected a “Frog Crossing” sign. Somebody bitched about the expense of the sign. But the sign is well worth your tax dollars for two reasons. First, the frog is a roadside attraction like no other, including that world’s largest ball of twine in Kansas. Second, it causes every passing eyeball to look for live toads crossing the road. So drivers tweet less for fifty yards or so, until they spy this brightly-painted twenty-ton hopper, poised to jump across the highway from its perch four stories above the road, or perhaps flick its ninety-foot igneous tongue to zap passing traffic. And toad found, driver smart phones come out like lightning bugs, turning selfie angles. The end is near.
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