This is a weekend for traveling.
More than 5 billion Americans will jump into their cars and drive to some destination so they can watch a parade, wave a flag, buy an inflatable Angry Bird™ balloon manufactured in China, and drink too much. I am doing all four things right now so my estimation of the number of American drivers might be a little off.
The recession is beyond us, according to Triple A, aka AAA not to be confused with AA or ABC. Gas prices are down, the three As declared, and promptly forgot to tell all the gas stations in my hometown since yesterday I spent $55 to fill up my Toyota Camry when it still had one-quarter of gas in the tank. But apparently, I will use all that “extra” money to buy me some entertainment in the form of restaurants, furniture rental stores and dollar stores.
I am using my savings to buy these at the Dollar Tree:
Mine will be red, white and blue.
The people-travel-on-holidays is a news story in the NY Post, and I am all too familiar with these non news stories that a reporter is forced to write to fill news holes on a long holiday weekend.
In Memorial Days of yore, I would be a lucky American non-traveler holed up in a cubicle on a Saturday covering four events that would eventually lead me down the path of obtaining an MLS so I would never have to interview people at the annual soap box derby ever again.
So. . . why are you at the soap box derby?
My daughter is racing.
Awesome. Grrl power. . . I’m sorry I said that. Um. So, what do you like about the soap box derby?
The fact my daughter is in it.
Yes, great stuff. Let me make sure I’ve quoted you accurately.
By the way the winner of the race “likes to race” and “enjoys the competition part.”
Then I would rush over to the annual wheat festival 20 minutes away to report on festive wheat. The ole’ timey wheat thresher would ole-timely thresh, and people would consume switzle–a concoction of vinegar, sugar, water and ginger–and vomit profusely.
Here is a direct quote from an news article I wrote about it:
“It’s been fun,” said one of the organizers. “We chose this weekend because of the weather and because it would be a patriotic weekend.”
Where the fuck is my Pulitzer?
Then I would write a story about oxygen being required for people to breathe, and inevitably someone would stick the inflatable parade balloon somewhere it should never be, and I would write about that when I did my police calls, and I would call it a day.
But this year, I’m free, people.
I’m free to join the 399,000 or 4 billion other drivers on the road to more happiness or more nowhere.
If only I can kick my switzle habit, I’ll be home free.