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"Amish Crafts - stuff made by people
who don't shower."
- Meg, somewhere in Ohio

Coast to Coast

Prologue - Written Aug. 17, 2001
   Alright, here's the deal.

   My summer in Nashua has been fun, but it's left me no time to really have any sort of a vacation. Not that I really need one, but screw you, I'm young and can actually afford to loaf around now. Anyway, Meg got a new car this summer, and for who knows what retarded / sadistic reason, she decided she wanted her car in Boston. Being a girl of decent intelligence, she realized a cross-country drive is not something one should undertake on their own. This would be where I step into the picture.

   I've always wanted to travel across the country, though I'd always assumed it wouldn't happen until I was old, disgusting and driving a Winnebago. However, I'll take young, bitter and driving a car that's not mine.
Epilogue - Written Sep. 1, 2001
   3,636 miles, spread out over 7 days of driving. Starting in North Hollywood, Meg and I eventually made it to Ogunquit, Maine, without killing ourselves or anyone else.

   Trips such as these never really go as one would plan them out to, and this one was no different. That said, the fact that things went better than I think either of us ever could have anticipated is a testament to how amazing a human being I really am. The fact I made it across America only marring my travel companion's beautiful skin once shows how tolerant I really am.

   Seriously though, it was an amazing trip. Many thanks to Margaret, her family, my family and the Colorado Highway Patrol for their understanding. Read on, because honestly, it's more interesting than the crap I usually go on about.

August 17 to 20, 2001 - Four L.A. days that scarred me forever...
It's A SoCal Story
   • First impressions are very important, as they produce images and stereotypes that are hard to shake. Sun Country Airlines stood ready to make just such an impression on me, as my flight stood poised to leave Logan Airport round dinnertime on Friday. Ignore the fact they're in ghetto Terminal D, tucked between Al-Italia and an escalator to hell. And they did, with this sign...

"This side for connections to San Fransisco"

   Two letters "s". In Francisco. Glorious.

   After getting baggage checked, the wait began. It's Logan Airport, so a 5:25 flight taking off at 7:10 really isn't all that upsetting -- oh no, they don't need any more runways. The flight, once it began, was generally very pleasant. A man from Berkeley extolled the virtues of the the Michener work The Novel to me, while I pored over USA Today and the AirMall catalog, while munching on an international bounty of Minnesota chicken pot pie, Atlanta's Coke and some sort of Belgian crackers, plus more. High living baby!

   Tangent!: In the catalog, a vendor called "The Good Store" advertised the worst gift I've ever seen: A photo, autographed by Bill Buckner and Mookie Wilson, of The Moment. The mention of the names Buckner and Wilson in the same sentence gives every member of Red Sox Nation shivers to the bone, especially given the impending titleless-end of another Red Sox season. "The Good Store" can bite me ass.

   Thanks to the whiny bitches around Logan, my one hour layover in Minneapolis was reduced to seven minutes. I had to hold my bladder, and my dreams of perusing cheap Twins souvenirs. I was left to walk across Sun Country's Minneapolis hub - the irony being Minneapolis gets sun about 37 minutes out of every year.

   The flight to LAX featured a bigger plane, less food and a flight attendant whose flabby arms made the safety demonstration an exercise in suppressing nausea. I wondered many things: Why is the fine for violating a bathroom smoke detector $2,200 and not $2,000? Why does Sun Country sell headphones only usable on their planes, then brag you can keep them? Why, after landing at LAX, did I have to stay on the plane another hour waiting for a God-damned shuttle bus to the terminal two miles away? Why does the shuttle have a steering wheel at each end?

   The steering wheel thing was for backing up, by the way.

   So at around 11:30 Pacific time, nearly an hour after I was supposed to, I finally met up with my ride home and got my luggage. My West Coast extravaganza was about to begin.
Next... Bring Your Own Foliage - SoCal Story Continues

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