Greetings from Santa Rosa, NM. As Homer Simpson said, “hey, there’s a NEW Mexico!”
First off, a shameful pox on those who did not believe the ducks would be walking to breakfast in the Little Rock morn. As I checked out, they had retired to the wading pool, happy as… well, ducks in water, I suppose.
I know how much everyone clamors for my unusually ironic brand of photojournalism as I traverse this fine country looking for ways to belittle my fellow Americans, but this little piece of tautological signage on a gas pump in Oklahoma always sends my grammar-fiend mother into paroxysms of misery:
Later in the night, I stopped for gas in rural panhandle Texas, where the local teens had descended in order to get their cases of Bud Light before the clock struck midnight. The cashier was not pleased, and when I got to the front of the line, I saw the rock upon which her indignation rested. Next to my deeply faggy Evian (“Does this answer your question?” from the movie “Heathers”) you will see a giant Holy Bible with relevant pages marked for impulse inspiration:
One thing about driving to LA – while my wife and daughter fly – is that the car becomes the repository for all the shit they didn’t want to carry with them. This time I’ve got a massively heavy office chair, bags of shoes… and the Baby Einstein Discover and Play™ Activity Center in the back seat:
This Activity Center says “dog” or “gato” or “cow” and then moos or barks, followed (no lie) by an excerpt from Mendelssohn’s Italian Symphony. Then Beethoven’s Fifth. Then “Old McDonald.” And this happens every time I go over a bump, hit a pothole, or take a swift turn off the freeway.
When it is silent, there is also a Fisher-Price bunny rabbit that Chip got Lucy, with about fifteen songs that get sung every time the car jiggles. One in particular:
Do your ears swing low
Do they tumble TO and FRO?
Can you tie them in a knot?
Can you tie them in a bow?
…I’ve heard it so many times that even I have run out of stunningly pornographic alternative lyrics, and that’s saying something. If it has been silent a while, a computer chip kicks in, and the doll screams “HUG ME!” from underneath my golf balls. My relationship to the Baby Einstein and the Fisher-Price rabbit has become a little like Tom Hanks and the volleyball in “Cast Away.”
I’m beginning to talk back. I’m beginning to tell them things. Secrets.
i need to get off the road