Thursday, June 30, 2005

In the Words of Emerson Drive

I Should Be Sleeping. But instead, I just watched an episode of Blind Date and played a game of ESPN 2K5 Baseball. My 2005 Mets rock, by the way (35-10). So screw the real ones, who lost to Philly again tonight.

Bags packed, ready to go, etc. Really looking forward to the trip (but not the 24 hours it'll take to get there). A little nervous to join the ranks of the alone travelers, but keeping tabs on Big Al (LINK IS IN THE SIDEBAR!!) gives me courage.

You all be good while I'm gone. Gonna go get a few hours sleep.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Final Leg

On the last day of the ride home . . . I got home. Frankly, nothing exciting. Breakfast at Denny's in PA, where a waitress poured a pot of hot coffee on some guy (I only got splashed a little, and didn't feel entitled to complain). There was horrible construction traffic, so (after sitting through one 45 minute mile earlier in the morning) I decided to make myself a little detour, driving for a while on US highways and state roads that (sort of) parallelled the Interstate. If I ever drive cross country again, I'm gonna take a shitload of time and avoid Interstates altogether. Got home a little before 4, and got a spot right outside my building, which is near impossible. And that's the deal.

Leave for Asia on Thursday. I think I have it under control, but I'm sure I'm forgetting something. Oh well. I'm really gonna try to keep a comprehensive journal and take a ton of pictures. It should be awesome.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Homeward Bound Day 3 (6/15)

Woke up pretty early and took off from Pup's place when he took off to go to work. HA! Some people still have jobs [yeah, I'm all talk. Ask about the conference call I had yesterday on one of the cases I used to work on at my old firm. That's right - I quit 3 weeks ago, and still had to spend 1/2 hour on the phone with some asshole partner from another firm basically accusing me of not doing my job].

I just drove, yo. Stopped for breakfast at a Waffle House. My first WH of the trip, believe it or not. Considering it's one of my favorite places on Earth, that's shocking. This particular WH was in Blue Springs, MO. Had my waffle, Hash Browns scattered & smothered, and coke - my regular WH meal. God it's good. And then, back on the road. Not a whole lot interesting happened.

Decided to stop for lunch in Vandalia, IL. Apparently, it's IL's historic former state capital. Though I didn't discern any capital-like characteristics at the Sonic where I chose to eat. It was my first trip ever to a Sonic. And it showed, when I tried to go inside to order. Apparently, that's not OK. So a nice chick on Roller Skates pointed me in the direction of the walk-up drive-thru like board thingamajiggy, and I placed my order. I know Sonic is best known for their burgers (and their "tots," ebruce, I know), but I thought I'd do the responsible thing and order a grilled chicken sandwich. Responsible and prudent. Because my stomach, I thought, would be much more likely to react negatively to unfamiliar burger than to unfamiliar grilled chicken. I apparently didn't take into account the unfamiliar mayo-based sauce on the grilled chicken factor. After eating, I filled up with gas [pun not initially intended, but now that I see it, holy shit, that's pretty funny!]. While at the pump, I overheard a conversation between two women also refueling, in which the words "taters" and "bedclothes" were both used entirely seriously, without the slightest hint of facetiousness or irony or anything like that. Jesus, people! Chicago is in this state - come on!!

Hey, remember the Sonic sauce?? There is a truck stop in Cloverdale, IN that will never be the same. My long haul rig-driving friends: I apologize profusely.

For literally hundreds of miles along the highway, there are signs for America's # 1 RV Dealer. I guess if I were in the market for an RV, it might make me feel better to purchase it from the # 1 dealer in the country. Except that his name is TOM RAPER! And it's in huge letters like that on every sign. Raper?? "Ma'am, this is one of the finest models around. Just come on here in the back and let me show you the bedroom . . . ."

I was still feeling the effects of the Sonic sauce, and decided to call it quits around Columbus. I did, without shitting my pants, manage to make it to the far suburbs, and stayed at a Red Roof Inn in Reynoldsburg, OH. After destroying the bathroom there, I walked across the parking lot to pick up dinner at a Tim Horton's, which is apparently a Canadian inspired sandwich and donut shop. I had a turkey sandwich and a Toffee-flavored donut, in honor of one of the random girls from Texas who drank beer in our pool cabana in Vegas, who swore that her name was actually Toffe (one e, I believe).

Almost home, folks.

Friday, June 24, 2005

Return Trip Day 2 (6/14/05)

Much as it pained me to leave Le Cite de Limon, I had places to go and Pup to see. So I hit the fuckin' road, with the KC Metro area as my goal. I left pretty early in the am, because my aim was to make it to KC in time to get to the Royals game against the Dodgers. Pup assured me getting tickets wouldn't be a problem. Colorado from Limon to the Kansas border was . . . nothing (though the map tells me I somehow passed by the Kit Carson County Carousel -- say that 3 times drunk -- without taking note of it; next time). I also passed through Genoa, CO, making me feel better about Europeanizing Limon. As beautiful as the mountains of Western Colorado were, that's how utterly unremarkable the flat expanse of Eastern Colorado was.

Of course, then I hit Kansas. Before I get into the details of what I experienced in Kansas, let me flat out declare that I can't imagine there is a more boring state, topographically/scenically etc., anywhere in this great country of ours. And how do they attempt to deal with that? By lowering the speed limit 5 mph from what it was in CO. As if to say, "Hah! It's boring as shit and you need to spend an extra hour driving through. We spend our lives here - pity us!"

Now, the whole ride out and back, I had been exceeding the speed limit. Significantly. But I was also sure to drive responsibly - the roads are straight and not overly crowded for the most part, and I was just keeping pace with traffic. Or setting the pace for the traffic to keep up with. Whatever. I did not have a radar detector with me; I've soured on them as they give off false alarms making you slow down for no reason, and also sometimes fail to go off as you cruise past a cop at 90. But I had been conscious of scanning the highway for 5-0. I must say, I'm pretty good at spotting them - ahead or behind - and adjusting my speed accordingly. And there should have been no easier place to do so than WaKeeney, Kansas - it's totally flat and you can see 100 miles in either direction down the road. So just how I totally failed to spot the Trooper until he pulled alongside me in the left lane escapes me. But I looked over and there he was - just behind me in the next lane. Now there were other cars ahead of me going just as fast. One that had actually pulled out to pass me just a few minutes before. But I looked up and knew who he wanted. The guy in the BMW with NY plates. I slowed. He slowed, pulled in behind me in the right lane, and lit me up. I pulled over, and didn't even think for a second that I could avoid a ticket. I thought maybe he'd cut me a litle break - give me a ticket for a slightly lower speed. So I did everything right - stayed in the car, rolled down the window, ignition off, seatbelt on, don't reach for the glove compartment to get the registration. Didn't help.

Trooper came over to the window and said, "I matched ya doin' 92. Can I please have your license and proof of insurance." I said, "Of course, sir. I didn't think I was going 92." As I got him my license and insurance card, he said that he paced me at 92, the radar said 92, and that even as he pulled up behind me, I was still doing 91. This was all likely true. I know that I had, at points, exceeded 110. There were a few times where I said to myself, "Hey, you should probably slow down," took my foot off the gas, and, 15 seconds later, watched the needle slowly ease back to the left of 95. I had to explain that neither of the addresses on my license was current, and waited while he went back to the car to make sure I wasn't wanted for passing bad checks in Little Rock. Long story long, he returned with a ticket, explained to me the procedure for pleading guilty or no contest by mail (assuming I didn't want to appear in Trego County District Court on July 18, which would have been difficult considering I'll be in Shanghai), and left me with the following pearl of wisdom: "Limit in Kansas is 70. I suggest you slow down, sir." For $168, he could have given me some more sage advice, no?

But I didn't let it faze me. I pulled away, determined to enjoy the rest of the ride. Except the rest of the ride was still in Kansas. One thing that Kansas does have that NY doesn't - an abundance of country music stations. It's true, NY has ZERO country stations. And LiAps loves the country. So I was switching back and forth between listening to my ipod and scanning local stations for good country (and other) stuff. During the lunchtime hour, I was, apparently, listening to Boomer's Noon Saloon on Y102, The Country Bull, out of Hays, KS. At one point, I was invited to dial *102 on my cell phone to make a request. So I did. And damned if I didn't get through to Boomer and make my fist ever radio station request. In the middle of fucking Kansas. I got reception on that station just long enough to hear my own voice on the radio 20 minutes or so later, followed by Callin' Baton Rouge by Garth Brooks, played just for me. It didn't quite put the $168 back in my pocket, but I felt a little better about Kansas.

Speaking of Kansas (as I will for the rest of this post), somebody tell me: are a disproportionate number of astronauts from the state, or is it just the only state that feels the need to put up a sign on the highway proclaiming every dipshit town "Home of Astronaut XX YY?"

I didn't stop at any astronaut towns. But, after 50 miles or so of seeing signs for "The Heartland's Premiere Winery," offering free tastings, I decided that, since I was due for a pee break anyway, I'd sample some vintage Kansas Jesus Juice at Wyldewood Cellars in Paxico. I didn't have great expectations, but figured I'd go in with an open mind. And I'm proud of myself. Because I think I kept a fairly straight face as I tasted several fruit-based wines out of screw-cap bottles, swished them around in my mouth and spit them in the basin thingy, making conversation with the guy behind the counter about the subtle hints of . . . wait . . . don't tell me . . . ahhhh! Rhubarb! I, of course, had to buy a couple of bottles, one of which was gifted to the 'rents, the other of which is currently aging in my rack. I'm considering going out and buying some Boone's or Mad Dog 20/20 so the Wyldewood has some peers to hang wit.

After my stop in Paxico, it was smooth (but slightly slower) sailing to Pup's place. He left a key under the mat for me and everything. Sweet. I chilled out at his place while waiting for him to get home from work ("My son worrrrrkks?!?!?!?!?"). Then we swung by to grab a friend of his and headed out for a night of KC BBQ, Royals baseball, and beer.

It was a fine evening. And a great halfway point for my trip home.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

The Flip Side, Day 1 (6/13/05)

After Vegas, the author of this blog turned his car around and headed back to the city that never sleeps. This is his story.

Frankly, I don't remember a whole lot about Day 1 of the return trip. I just drove. I was trying to get pretty far, as my planned stop for night 2 was Overland Park, KS, because I needed a little stuffed bear lovin'. I was pretty exhausted from Vegas, and consumed several Red Bull-type drinks, in an effort to stay awake, alert, and happy. I don't know how well they did that, but they sure kicked my stomach's ass (stomach's ass?). I did, however, come across a new favorite one. I'll never drink a Red Bull again. How could I, knowing that pimpjuice is out there?? Nelly, I don't know shiznit about your music, yo, but you make a muthafucka of a drizzink. Seriously, this stuff, despite being a truly frightening shade of neon green, is uncarbonated, so goes down smooth as Colt 45, and simply tastes better than Red Bull. I've never seen it in NY, but am gonna order a case online. Because nothing beats being able to say the following to any guests that come over: "You want something to drink? I have Coke, water, pimpjuice . . ." And meaning it.

A close second is Amp, from the makers of Mountain Dew. Similar unnatural color and better taste than Red Bull, but this one's carbonated.

My goal, once I realized how exhausted I truly was, was to get to the Denver area before stopping for the night. In accord with my genetic predisposition toward "beating the traffic on the way out," I figured I would go past the city to the outer suburbs so as not to get caught in Denver rush hour the next morning. Great plan. Except that either I was actually asleep while driving or, on I-70, once you get past the exit for the Denver airport, there's like nothing at all for scores of miles. Seriously - it went right from Airport Road to fucking cows on the side of the road. Now, I could have turned around. But I kept thinking, "Something will come up soon." Soon took forever.

But I finally found "civilization" in Limon, CO (which I insisted on pronouncing "lee-mone" to give it a thoroughly undeserved air of European-esque refinement and sophistication; I'd be willing to bet everyone else called it "lime-in"). Mapquest is telling me Limon is 89 miles from Denver. Man, it felt longer. But I found a serviceable motel, a Best Western I believe. Checking in in front of me was a cute little blonde girl who was telling the woman behind the desk about how she had checked into some motel near Denver, but there were sketchy people there and she didn't feel safe, blah, blah, so she had to get out of there. Hey - that just about confirms that I wasn't sleepdriving - Limon was the next place she found too. Sweet. The lady told me that there was no elevator, and the only 1st floor room she had was a jacuzzi suite. Having purposely stayed in a jacuzzi suite once in Vegas [here's where I squeeze my eyes shut really tight and wish really hard to go back in time to that weekend almost 3 years ago . . . nope, still June '05!] and inadvertently stayed in one in Reno (that's a good story for a post, though I just gave away the punchline), I didn't see the need for one in Limon, and decided to suffer through carrying my bag up the stairs. Had dinner at Denny's, then back to the room to crash.

Am I The Only One

who suspects Tom Willis?? You know he and Weezy were getting it on. Helen was a piece of ass, but that honkey never could get enough brown sugar.

Day 4 (Wed 6/8/05)

Sorry again for the delay. No excuse. I'm back in NY, and have been since last Thursday. No more pictures, just text. I'll try to post the rest of the ride out and the ride back. Maybe I'll take time to synthesize some overall thoughts on the trip as well. Leave for Asia next Thursday (6/30). On that trip, I really really want to take more pics and notes. Make me do it, OK?

Day 4: Woke up in Beaver (for the first time in a long long time). Showered, shaved, checked out, and got on the road for the 200-odd miles I had left to hit Vegas. Got gas before I got on I-15. It was self service, but one of the attendants came up and started washing my windows and asking if I needed anything else. I'm pretty sure it was because of the car I was driving, because nobody at any of the other pumps got similar treatment that I could see. I really wanted to tip him, but the smallest bill I had was a 10. Now, I've given stupid tips before, but was well aware that I'm now unemployed. So I asked him if he had change (and apologized profusely, as asking for change while tipping is incredibly tacky). He said he didn't, and that I shouldn't worry about it. Were he a bellman in a fancy hotel, I would have taken that to mean "Give me the whole $10 you dumb fuck." But from this guy at a Utah gas station, it came across as sincere. So I didn't tip him, but made a mental note to stop back by that gas station on the return trip if it made sense to do so.

Had breakfast at IHOP in Cedar City, UT, home of Southern Utah University. My waitress was the nicest, sweetest girl ever. I left her a borderline ridiculous tip percentagewise, though not ridiculous in absolute dollar terms.

I had realized somewhere along the way that I was supposed to play golf both Thursday and Friday mornings, and had not packed a single Polo shirt (golf courses require collars). So I pulled off the highway in St. George, UT and jumped into Old Navy. It was like Village of the Damned. Except instead of frightening little children, every person who worked in the store (except the girl who eventually rang me up) was an identical beautiful blonde 17-year-old girl. They were hot. I know, they were too young. But they were hot. And there I am, thinking, "Oh my God, we're in Utah - I could marry ALL OF YOU!" So I bought 3 Polo shirts for $10 a pop, as well as a classic LiAps hideous short sleeve button down off the clearance rack.

St. George is basically right on the Arizona border, and after 29 miles in Arizona, you hit Nevada. And we all know what's in Nevada. Right, Area 51. But also VEGAS!!!! After missing the turn onto the Strip and pulling a u-turn (shut up!), I pulled into the Mirage parking lot, and was home. I say "home," because in my 4 days there, I contributed to the Vegas economy what most people who live there probably spend on 2 months' rent.

Here's the deal. I was in Vegas for the bachelor party of one of my oldest, closest friends in the wizzorld. We've already referred to him as Bruno in this forum, so let's go with it. There will be no detailed descriptions of the events of the weekend. Not that anything too scandalous went on. Suffice it to say I had a great time, I believe he had a great time, and I can't wait to go to the wedding down in Florida when I get back from Asia.

Posts about the ride home, probably less detailed and less exciting, will follow above.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Day 3 - Part 2

Utah Rest Stop
Originally uploaded by LiAps.

Here's my advice to all you cross-country travelers. Don't EVER say, "Oh, I'll just pee/get gas/grab food as soon as I cros into Utah." There is NOTHING until you hit Green River. Nothing. And, you'd better stop in Green River no matter what. I, as you can probably tell, needed to stop regardless. But, had I not been planning on it, the small sign on the exit signpost which read "No Services on I-70 for 106 miles" would not have caught me in time. Seriously, shouldn't they give you a mile or so advance notice?

Anyway, Utah is beautiful too. This picture was taken at a random highway rest stop, for Chrissakes!

This was the day when I truly had an epiphany - the rest of the country is so incredibly beautiful, how can I live in NY?? There was a middle school up in the CO mountains that I passed by, and thought, "How could a kid not be permanently happy with this as the backdrop for his days at school?" Something like that anyway.

Somewhere along the way (I think in CO), I passed a Halliburton truck. Ha.

Stopped at the Best Western Butch Cassidy Inn in Beaver, UT. It was immaculate and perfect for a road trip motel. I could have driven further, could probably have made it all the way to Vegas, but I was in no rush.

I asked the woman behind the counter at the hotel for a dinner recommendation that was not fast food. She said her favorite place was a steakhouse, which sounded good to me. So I changed my shirt (totally unnecessary, as it turned out), and headed out.

The "steakhouse" was a glorified trailer. And as I pulled up, the three faces in the window were unabashedly staring at me. They were the only other customers, and the only other car in the parking lot was a construction/utility van. When I walked in and sat down, I was fully prepared to take some shit from these guys -- I pulled up in a BMW with NY plates.

They started with, "You're a long way from home, aren't you?" And I settled in for the beating (hoping it would only be verbal). They turned out to be 3 really nice guys. As were the owner of the steakhouse and the waitress. We all shot the shit a little. Talking about Vegas - where I was headed, and where the owner had lived for 27 years, where he ran a catering company which catered all of John Wayne's later movies.

The food was really good, and crazy cheap. It was a good evening.

Here's one thing I thought about: I could have made up any story I wanted when talking to these people. People, including friends of mine, make shit up all the time when talking to strangers. But I told my true life story, down to admitting I was a lawyer (poor attempts at jokes followed) and that I had borrowed the BMW I was driving from my mother. I am such a bad liar, even when it doesn't matter, that I just don't do it.

OK. Enough for now. Gotta go to sleep. Rest of trip will follow

Day 3 (6/7/05) - Part 1

Santa Maria
Originally uploaded by LiAps.

Sorry for the delay. But let's move on.

Got up crazy early, so got in the car and drove. Took a little detour through the mountains on US 285 and CO Rt. 9. Amazing mountain driving. Colorado as a whole is so fucking beautiful, I almost couldn't stand it. Really. I drove through Hoosier Pass - 11,541 feet elevation. You really can feel the difference in the air. Also passed through Breckenridge. You think someone will hire me as an offseason caretaker for a fancy ski house??

The pic is from some place called Santa Maria. All of a sudden, out of nowhere, there's just this huge religious statue on the side of the mountain. Not a great shot, but I really couldn't get a good angle.

Rest of the day above.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005


Originally uploaded by LiAps.

In Roggen, where I pulled off to try to get pics of the crazy sky, there was an abandoned motel. I'm not sure if it was technically abandoned, as there were cars pulling around the back - VERY shady. But I liked it as a photo subject. I should've explored more.

I drove another couple hours, past Denver, so as to make sure not to get caught in morning rush hour traffic, and spent the night in Golden, CO, at a beautiful Quality Suites. Seriously, it was clean and the people were nice. The only non-smoking room they had was a handicapped accessible room. But I wasn't taking a smoking room. So I had a huge bathroom. Apparently, though, the handicapped don't require clocks, as there was none in my room.

That's the end of Day 2, unless and until I think of something else.

Too tired to do Day 3 right now. But goodnight from Beaver, UT. I shit you not.

One Exit Too Late

Crazy Sky
Originally uploaded by LiAps.

Cruising through Colorado, I saw the most incredible sky ever. Ever. I hesitated about whether to pull off the highway to try to get some shots of it, and missed my best chance (you can't think too long at about 92 mph). But then I did pull off at the next exit, in Roggen, CO. This pic is kinda cool, but doesn't even begin to capture how amazing the sky was - this one section of dark clouds in the middle of an otherwise beautifully blue view in all directions with mountains in the background. It was awesome.

Can I Interest You In A Rolix?

Taste Test?
Originally uploaded by LiAps.

Got gas at Lucy's in Sedgwick, CO. It was comforting to know that I was getting a "major brand," but not have to worry about the political implications of choosing one oil company over the other. Oh, and it was the only gas for many, many miles. Yes, I took that picture through the windshield. I took a whole bunch while driving about 90 as well. That was fun.

Archway Interlude

Gender Roles As They Should Be
Originally uploaded by LiAps.

While this wagon-pushing lady was not real, the miner dude standing just inside the entrance to the archway was. And I realized that as soon as he screamed, "Well hey there young feller!" scaring the everloving shit out of me.

Day 2, Part Deux

How Dumb Is America?
Originally uploaded by LiAps.

Had lunch at Arby's in York, NE. I really dig Arby's.

Stopped at the Great Platte River Road Archway Monument (pictured above). I had seen a bit on the Travel Channel about this place, and could NOT resist when I saw it appear on the horizon. Basically, what this is is a glorified rest stop spanning I-80 at Kearney, NE. It's billed as a tribute to the exploration and development of the West, yadda yadda. It's $10 for admission to the attraction (it's not really a museum, per se), but my AAA card got me a dollar off. Score. I was on the fence about whether to do it or not. There's an audio tour, and I asked how long it took. I wasn't pressed for time at all, but I didn't feel like spending too long there. They said it was one of those systems that had one audio portion per room and switched over automatically when you went from one to the other. They said, "you could spend 3 hours up there, but most people take about 45 minutes." I was in and out in about 8. Yes, I bought more souvenirs.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Day 2, Part 1

Kum & Go!
Originally uploaded by LiAps.

Got up early and got the hell out of the E. Coli Lodge. As I mentioned, that place was nizzasty.

Crossed the Mississippi. Anticlimactic. Perhaps because the whole bridge was under construction, and I really couldn't see anything.

Had breakfast at the Cracker Barrel in Davenport, IA. It was like, well, having breakfast in Iowa. I would have loved to have taken a panoramic shot of all the patrons in the place. Barring the Asian family (who I then saw get into a minivan with Missouri plates), the place was so full of stereotypical Iowans that I almost couldn't believe it wasn't set up for me. I tried to imagine all those people having brunch at Pastis and smiled. And then I realized that, in some way I just can't articulate, I feel more like I belong, or feel more comfortable, at an Iowa Cracker Barrel than at a chichi Manhattan brunch spot. Maybe it's just the novelty, but I don't think so.

Got gas at the above-pictured "Kum & Go" in Colfax, IA. These places are all over the state. I ask you - why the quirky misspelling? Were it a fast food joint specializing in Kumquats, maybe. But what's the hook here? It's not any LESS subject to juvenile sex jokes because of the misspelling, it's just kind of weird.

Went a good 15 miles out of my way to check out the "Authentic Danish Windmill" in Elk Horn, IA. I took a pic, but it was nothing special. Is it just me, or isn't it the Dutch, and not the Danish, who are famous for windmills? There was also a Danish Immigrant Museum further down the road, which I skipped. I did, however, go into the windmill gift shop. Among other things, I purchased a "Kiss Me, I'm Danish" pin. Why? I'm glad you asked. Here's why. And here's also all the evidence you'll ever need to have me involuntarily committed:

I imagined that the woman behind the counter (who was not entirely unattractive) would say to me, "So, are you really Danish?" And I would reply, "No, but I've eaten a few in my days . . . and none of them ever complained!"

Of course, she actually said, "Thanks. Have a great day." So now I have a Halloween costume.

Day 2 - The Process

Here's the deal people. I don't know how to post multiple pictures in one post using flickr, so I'm going to have to a)ask for help, and b) do multiple posts for this day. This is just the warning post. More to come via flickr posting.

On the Road, Day 1

Day 1 was actually Sunday, 6/5/05, just so you have a frame of reference. I could attempt to catch you up on Days 1 and 2, but I'm exhausted. Plus, there are pictures from Day 2, and I left the camera in the car. So, live with Day 1, in bullet point form:

  • Did just short of 900 miles today. That' s a fair amount of driving. Used to do it all the time between NY and ATL, but as my dad reminded me Saturday, I'm not young anymore. Feel good anyway.
  • Staying at the EconoLodge -- or, as a good friend of mine calls it, the E. Coli Lodge -- here in Princeton, IL. Knowing how dirty the bedspread I'm lying on right now is is almost killing me. I'm almost at the point where I can see the logic behind my friend's theory from our post-college trip to Europe, pursuant to which he didn't shower in several places because the showers were not clean enough for him.
  • Got served full-on raw chicken at the Country Kitchen across from the motel. If I'm found dead mysteriously in this filthy room tomorrow, have the M.E. start the investigation there.
  • I drove through INSANE storms today in Indiana. The worst rain I've ever seen. And I've seen [fire and I've seen] rain! They actually used the Emergency Broadcast System. Thank god they've been testing it my whole life.
  • I'm about 98% sure I witnessed the beginning stages of a chick in a minivan preparing to pee in a bottle while cruising along I-80 today. She emptied an Aquafina bottle out the passenger window, getting it all over my car in the process (that stuff tastes like piss anyway), and I saw her switching positions with the girl in the backseat and maneuvering in ways consistent with such a plan. I don't know for sure that that's what happened, because I passed them before they dumped the bottle again. But it would have been a great start for a niche porn film.
  • Still feeling awful about Spike. It was the most horrible thing I've ever witnessed. Thanks for all your kind thoughts in the comments below.
  • Mets are on ESPN, so I can watch it even from the middle of nowhere. LET'S GO METS!!!!

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Appointment With Death

Tomorrow morning, while I'm out on LI picking up a car so I can embark on my cross-country journey, my family is going to take my dog to the vet. To be put to sleep, put down, euthanised - call it what you want, it's the same thing. We have an 11:30 appointment. I am not going to be good at this.

He's old. Really old. 16 1/2. Which is like 115. And it's time. He hasn't been himself for a while - he pretty much either sleeps, paces, or just stands there staring at a wall (though it's debatable whether he can see it). He is clearly not really there; his quality of life is nil. But he's my dog, and no matter how long I've known this was coming, and how much I know it's the right thing to do, for his own sake, I'm not really ready.

Not gonna be a happy day. I'd post a picture of him if I had one on my computer or my camera. But I'm not gonna take one tomorrow, because he doesn't even look like himself anymore, and I'd rather remember him as the healthy, happy (if high maintenance) puppy that he was for so long.

Like I said, I'll try to keep you posted on some of my travels starting with the Vegas trip. Goodnight everyone.