subconscious bad-ass twanguitar intro.....
I'm gonna drive all night
Take some speed
I'm gonna wait for the sun
To shine down on me...
It was nearly dawn when we crossed the great Mississippi
. We sat and smoked and bumped no doz
powdermelange madness off an aluminum picnic table
. The late May air was beautiful and sweet, cool and perfect for amplifying the charging sound of the river. The plan for the first day of our Philly-to-LA-one-way roadtrip
had been Philadelphia to Chicago.
They got some money out there
They're giving it away
My old high-school buddy Nick was moving to the weatherless land
to a beautiful apartment on Rodeo Drive
which he'd never seen- to live with people he'd never met
- to work for a man who'd been his film professor at Princeton
- to try to Make It
. Nick's father hadn't wanted him to take the trip alone, and the man said that if I'd go with him, he'd pay for my ticket home once we got out there and Nick got his shit in order.
I'm gonna do what I want
And I'm gonna get paid...
I'd only had two days to get ready, but I wasn't taking much with me. We had a goal, and we had a plan
, and by God we had a big fucking road atlas
. We sketched a route out that went something like Philly
, Souix Falls
, The Badlands
and Rapid City
, Mount Rushmore
, Devils Tower
, Salt Lake City
, Bryce Canyon
, Las Vegas
, and into Los Angeles
. We had thought Chicago would be a good place to stop for the night.
No fucking go
When we rolled into the windy city
at midnight, nearly thirteen hours after leaving Wilmington
, the behemoth of Chicago
was terrifying. A giant flaming tentacle
of electric light overtowered by a great black horned beast
. We stopped long enough to piss and get gas, and give a dollar to the heroinzombie
that "washed" our windshield
while we got gas with what appeared to be a bucket of urine and a bloody rag
. Suddenly we realized that we'd never before understood the concept of "bad vibrations
." That night Chicago was full of them. That had been midnight. By the time we hit Madison
and got coffee
to wash down the adderall
, we were deeply in the clutches of a roadbrain second wind
. No point in stopping when you're too busy hitting a peak.
Well I'm goin' out west
Where the wind blows tall...
So here it was, dawn, and we'd come nearly 1200 miles. We couldn't stop here for very long. We'd come too far to stop
. Nick got out the map. We had that mammoth atlas, but so far we'd only been looking at the two-page map of the whole U.S. We'd stuck to major highway
s. That was fine for travel in the east, but we knew that by the time we hit Dakota we'd need a little more detail.
"Look," Nick said, "if we can make it to Rapid City, we can fold over the whole first half of the map. We'll have driven halfway across the country
at a shot."
I think the man
once said "Anything worth doing is worth doing right
." 1650 miles. 2661 kilometers. No sleep. If we got pulled over in our state, we'd probably be in trouble- our pupils were approximately small enough for angels to dance on
, and neither of us could keep our hands from shaking
. We could make it.
...Well my parole officer
italicized lyrics by Tom Waits from the song "Goin' Out West" on the album Bone Machine
Will be proud of me
With my Olds 88
And the devil on a leash
My Olds 88
And the devil on a leash...