Category Archives: Cars and Racing
Somewhere in Oklahoma…
How dare you, Union Pacific, block off the ONLY road to the neighborhood I need to get to!! Alright, fine, roll on through…
…keep it moving…
…geeeeeeeeeez how long is this train? Hurry up slowpoke…
…wait, WHAT? Why are you stopping? Here?? IN FRONT OF ME???
(several torporific minutes pass)
BACKWARDS?!?! You just went– you were going — GAWDDAMMITSUMBITCCCCHHHH!
I HATE THIS PLACE!!!
But I have promises I have to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
- from “Stopping By Woods On A Snowy Evening,” by Robert Frost
Fatigued yet excited, I pushed my truck up a slithery thin road coated with sticky, humid fog. No lights along or on the road to guide, I lowered my high beams and windows, using sound and smell to help me through the most uncertain of situations: finding my campsite at a state park I’ve never been to, completely shrouded in tall pine darkness, in a state famously known for horrific acts upon humans who didn’t look like they belonged. I not only tested Fate but I mocked her, and after some back and forth on the windy roads, I found the site, my lot, and praise Allah, a full restroom with functioning showers!
Bobby Tiberius took the role of guard dog as I rinsed off the agony of Arkansas. Friggin’ Arkansas with its major construction, which the locals will appreciate and I will refuse to traverse anytime soon. My bunk, the back of the truck, with my faithful senechaux to one side, and the local radio station broadcasting from the dashboard, lulling us to quick slumber.
The following morning, I used the dictation feature of Inkpad to capture my thoughts en Existenz. Here’s my best transcription based on the choppy voice file:
8 AUGUST: I woke up this morning to the sound of chimmy chimmy chimmy chimmy, a bird I am not familiar with … [and all I can think is] it’s a great way to wake up in the morning. … it’s been a while since I’ve woken up before sunrise; got cleaned up, walked the dog, got breakfast [out of the truck,] a nice bento box of peanut butter sandwiches and fruit for breakfast. The way the sun hits the pine tree behind the picnic table, just so warm and inviting I don’t feel any anxiety here, which kind of [strengthens] the fact that I’m much more comfortable in nature then I am in society. Waldo Emerson, David Thoreau were absolutely right; the man in nature is truly complete.
Think about for a sec…you got a running shower, you’ve got gorgeous atmosphere, scenery, isolation…man! People are too afraid to go outside! That is based on fear.
If you’re one who understands that fear is a motivator, or you’ve broke past fear … use it rather as an engagement of intention, you can pull into a state park at any evening in the dark of night and feel completely at ease.
I hate that I need a cigar to wake up, but frankly I don’t have any heating element to which I can quickly make hot water to make a cup of hot tea.
So I already have it planned for next time; book lot #2 and lot #3 of the campground, which is right across from a playground with a Frisbee golf course, a beautiful walk along the side [of it.] Waking up listening [huh?? to birds, maybe?] is the life for me. For 14 dollars you can’t get that shit in a hotel! You can’t have a conversation with the gods in a hotel! (NOTE: I recall looking up into the pines taking pictures while saying this) To which makes me think that hotels are for the lonely and fearful … I think this is the best way for me to travel, feeling most at home. I can totally see me coming out here, plugging into a outlet with my laptop, writing from sunrise to sunset. The potential to imagine would be limitless, words undisturbed and I feel, [would be] of the best quality.
I noticed that my lot neighbor has a camper and a city truck and I can only assume he might be living here. (NOTE: Waved at him when he pulled off to work, so think I was talking towards him) I don’t blame you; this is perfect.
I imagine the reason why young people don’t like to camp is because they have watched too many horror movies, like they learn from what they see on the screen, and think that’s reality… equal to reality; the reality is that you can, with nature, transcend into something greater than one is used to, become truly connected. I don’t feel I can ever longer advocate for society, I certainly can [advocate for a] transcendental experience.
“You know what my dad calls this place?”
I look above and around the chinch hanging on the walls and between tables, leveling my eyes at the sight of wooden peg games on each table top. A myriad of names pop in my mind.
She laughs as she says it, “Honkey Bucket.”
I’m careful not to laugh too loud. “I will never UNknow that! Let your dad know I’m gonna use it.”
We’re both being sensible; eating as much meat product as possible. While she does the ham-bacon-sausage trifecta, I go for grilled catfish ‘n’ eggs. We discuss the benefits of packing food vs. stopping to eat where we go. “My plan is to save every dollar towards gas.” “Me too.” I tell her about hurricane sandwiches, where you take the whole loaf of bread out of the bag, dress with nonperishable, processed foods, then return all of it back into the bag, the idea being, you can survive a hurricane landfall with this bag ‘o’ food. Yes, the butts are their own sandwich, or you can give them to the dog.
I reach for my phone. “Let’s talk route.” As Google Maps activates, I watch her watch our server pour water into her glass. Just as I think, ‘ooh, there’s a side spigot on that pitcher,” she says, “Umm. That was Sprite.” I want to laugh, but the server’s expression indicates she’s kicking herself internally. “It’s okay,” we both say, and the server explains, “I just got here. Haven’t had my coffee. I’ll get you another cup.” She says, “I totally understand,” as the server whisks off.
I felt compelled to admit I’ve never been a server. Either I was the manager or I was in the kitchen. “Hard to hit the floor when you’re not ready,” I assume. She’s the opposite; she prefers service positions. “Yeah, but sometimes once you’re talking to people it wakes you up.” I nod. That’s why I was never on the floor. I hated dealing with people, but I loved telling them to go fuck themselves. That’s when I realize, this person is good for me. I need someone who is naturally friendly and compassionate who I have no sexual attraction to. We can compliment each other without complicating each other.
I swipe the screen to enter an address somewhere in the American Midwest. The blue ball indicating our current location shrinks as the image expands upward, displaying the green penis of Florida and the expanse of North America above it.
In an act of complete abandon, a huge leap of faith on my protective part, I position the screen towards her. “Pick our route.”
She tightens her face to scrutinize the options. “We’re taking our time?”
I’m amused as she rubs her chin, clearly putting much study to the North America map.
“Either 20 or 40 but west for sure.” I have done the Florida to New York drive too many times, sorry Atlantic seaboard. I want to see some new shit. I hope she wants to see the Grand Canyon.
She points to Louisiana, a certain city I’ve never hung out in, just driven through. “I can talk to her about staying the night.”
“That’s cool. Definitely save on getting a hotel. But we need that confirmed before we leave.”
She nods assuredly, “Oh that’s fine.”
“She needs to be cool with us showing up at 3 in the morning with a dog.”
“Oh that’s fine.”
The paranoid part of me is screaming, but I let her rock out. I have to do this; I have to resolve my crisis of faith, and it starts with trusting this person.
Neither one of us has the will to clean our plates. Maybe if we had smoked prior to brunch, but, oh well.
I lift our ticket from the center of the table. “Honkey Bucket’s on me.”
[NOTE: Got big news for you, but why just blurt it out when I can make it a three-part reveal? :P Here's an attempt at flash NON-fiction...]
“The thing is, it’s been a long time since I traveled with anyone across the country. Thirty two states I’ve done completely on my own. But when I did have someone I could travel with, it was nice. I liked the company. That’s why I’m putting it out there; I need a wingman. A travel buddy. I figured since you’ve been trying to get out of town for awhile and you really don’t care where you’re going, as long as it’s outside Florida, I should give you a try, you know, see if you can really hang the way I need you to hang.”
She nods with understanding, then cranes her neck.
“You see, I have severe trust issues, like, SEVERE. I’m always the go-to person, the rely on person, the one who has to start and end the fights, you know…”
“The Protector type.”
“I can see that about you.”
“Well, I’m a practical person.”
Her order arrives but she’s not touching it. I float my left hand over her tray and insist, nonverbally, she start, but she waves me off, nonverbally saying, I can wait.
“You have to understand when I’m out on my own, I do whatever I want. I engage whoever I want. I plan to be in a state of constant discovery. If not discovering new places and scenery, then discovering how far over the edge can I push someone.”
Now that was a deliberate line because I want to see her reaction. Instead, she offers this:
“I can tell you’re the kind of person who does things within reason.”
“And if you can reason an action, you’ll do it.”
“Also yes. And I need you to go along with it, see? Something’s going down, I give you an instruction, there’s no time for discussion, you do it, you’re in, you’re out. Just like that.”
“Like, if I call your phone, you NEED to pick it up.”
“Right, because if we’re travelling together, what other reason can there be for you to call?”
“Exactly! And if I’m on the other end and I say, ‘go to the car, get the tire iron, bring it to me now!’ you gotta do it.”
Her face turns up, and she makes a half snarl, half sneeze expression to her right side.
“I’d come back with like, seven tire irons because I wouldn’t know which one you’d prefer.”
Left fist into right cupped hand signaled confidence in this proselyte possible progeny.
“Right! And if I only need one, you throw the rest!”
She stands and mimics one crazed urban ninja, tossing tire irons like shurikens.
My order is delivered to the table. The tattoo-sleeved, dark-haired, bearded fella would have been flirtable had I not caught the flatness of his ass.
I part my meal, she divvies hers, and we share plates across the table…