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Tuesday, June 5, 2012
I Am Machine - Part 3 (The Co-Pilot)
Or at least I will attempt to do so.
I am a seasoned professional at making these treks. With nothing more than a meager stock of bananas, Monster Drinks, sunflower seeds and beef jerkey, I have strapped in, pointed the car due east, north or west and hit the gas. I have written songs. blogs, short stories, plays and novels while steering the automobile down the road, cruise control set five miles over the legal speed limit, keeping it between the lines.
Now I have Taggart signed on as my co-pilot. I have known Mike since we were youngsters in high-school; we have a long-lasting, love-hate relationship that has carried on through the years. We have traveled together before; it is nothing new. We will throw in a book tape or listen to Howard Stern on satellite radio. The travel time will be cut considerably because we will take turns napping and driving. It will all be good.
I will carry along a legal pad on which I will note my thoughts of the trip as it unfolds. I will draw pictures and sketch landscapes and perhaps draw up a last will and testament in case one of us drives into a concrete piling along the way. This is just sound thinking. The plan is to drive to Dubuque, Iowa, pick up Logan's stuff, turn around and drive back - kind of a sedentary iron-man feat.
I will count on Mike to bring his A-Game and some interesting conversation to the table - this is after all, a free trip (albeit brutal and not enjoyable) and I will have no problem with stranding his boring ass in the middle of Nebraska if he tells me yet another version of one of the same stories I've heard since 1982. For God's sake, read a book and give me a new outlook on something - like my fucking attitude - cheer me up, or something. In exchange, I promise, on my part, to not be a grumpy dick for more than three hours in any given stretch. This seems fair.
And no flatulence. Fair warning and a window-down is mandatory and a sneak attack will find somebody carrying his McDonald's soft serve to an empty parking space at the gas station along the Iowa turnpike. This I swear.
I also promise that I will set Mike on fire at a rest stop and drive away without a second thought if he talks about work. I won't even kick dirt on his smoldering carcass - in fact, I will leave a sign warning others off doing so, claiming to be hiding in the bushes. Thinking of work is not an option on a trip with The Machine - we have focus to maintain.
This all said, I look forward to writing about a safe, enjoyable trip back and forth across the country this time next week, while listening to my daughters argue in the next room.
Posted by Jerry Ford at 5:31 PM