5. Take a Road Trip
Sure, I originally meant to do something a little more Jack Kerouac than driving to Kentucky, but in retrospect my recent journey to the NCADP conference in Louisville offered many of the experiences I wanted from a road trip in the first place:
*I took a long, solitary drive (over ten hours)
*I appreciated a variety of interesting and scenic terrain
*I met a lot of interesting people
*I stayed in a crappy hotel along the road
*I embarked on a spontaneous adventure
Add to that list the fact that I have done so much driving in the past few months I might vomit in my lap if confronted with the prospect of being in a car for three days straight. In short, the dishes are done, dude.
The beauty of the snow covered mountains and small towns along the route through West Virginia took me by surprise. I passed through national forests, drove down long tunnels at the base of mountains, and caught a case of black lung while stopping for dinner in a coal mining town. I also made some killer mix CDs for the trip, my favorites being a collection of radio clips from Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant, a lecture by Arundhati Roy, and the entire Eels discography.
But the real highlight occurred on the way back. Remember Billy Bob's Wonderland
? The place with the full Rock-afire Explosion Band? Turns out Billy Bob's lies just off of I-40 in Barboursville, WV, a mere five minutes off my planned route. Of course I had to go. See:
I have video, too, but, um, maybe the band in action is better left to your imagination. They were a little rough around the edges. I can't blame them, really; they used to be rock stars and now they've been relegated to playing 32 shows a day just to make a buck, all for unappreciative children who were more interested in their smart phones than they were in the brilliant variety act on stage three feet away from them. I watched three songs before I started to feel a little creepy. In case you're wondering, they covered All-4-One's I Swear, Marvin Gaye's I Heard it Through the Grapevine, and some shit by Gwen Stefani.
As a side note, check out those wrinkles under my eyes.