Sunday, April 30, 2006

April on the Road.

Did you know that Candace and I were away this April? We were.

9,000 km’s by air.
600 km’s by train.
4500 km’s by car.
One flat tire in hickville California.
Two bouldering pads, two nights slept in our car, two border hassles and no ID.
Three way too hot, way too cold, way too windy, slices of high desert heaven; the Colorado, the Mojave, and the Eastern Sierra.
Fourbucks coffee and evesdroppring small town gossip.
Five car pile-up in Sacramento.
Six teenagers on cocaine.
Seven days at home.
Gay pride week.
An introduction to brain vacating late nights in Toronto with the infamous Mark deHoog.
A surprising capacity for the French language in Montreal and Ste-Julie.
A well orchestrated navigation through the gridlocked urbania of Portland.
A swirling pool of dirty brown water around my feet as I washed the desert out of places my body never knew I had.
I grew a beard because I wanted to look like the desert father I met.

Did you know that I had a lot of stereotypes confirmed on this trip? I did.

Palm Springs is full of depends and old people.
California’s economy doesn’t belong to fruit, tech, and tourism; it belongs to plastic surgeons and criminals.
Gas station coffee can be easily confused with motor oil.
Speaking of gas stations, first-quarter numbers of publicly owned gas stations show huge profits. Anyone notice the price at the pumps lately?!
French people are visibly more passionate then I am.
Natural hot-springs are full of naked people.
Even though I am conservative and far from criminal minded customs officials still make me nervous. Apparently I am red-flagged now.
There is a huge American trailer-park populace.
Latino men drive low-riderz…that’s right, low-riderz. (As opposed to low-riders).
Tanned, toned, and tantalizing becomes tanned, saggy, and wrinkled. “Slip! Slap! Slop! Where a hat!” makes a lot of sense now.

A few books I read that I would also recommend to you.

East of Eden by John Steinbeck – A brilliant work of fictional literature that dances and tip-toes its way around the Biblical story of Cain and Abel before jumping in bed with it to produce a hugely significant piece of social commentary. In its time this novel was highly controversial and even banned in certain states; it might still be banned from your church library!

What Canadians Think About Almost Everything by Darrell Bricker and John Write of Canadian pollsters ISPOS-REID – What percentage of Canadians prefer a good night’s sleep to good sex? What is the likelihood that a Canadian believes that the devil is active in the world today? Did you know that BC residents are the least religious and least likely province in Canada to believe in God? Do you know which province is most likely? You may be surprised. Quebec. Did you know that only 37% of Canadians know the first line of our national anthem? Do you? If you don’t it’s surprisingly simple… “O Canada” Wow!!

This funny, informative, and often surprising read navigates its way through the often confusing and diverse views, opinions, and actions of Canadians. A very interesting and compelling read for almost anyone who cares about something or anything. If I had a coffee table in my house this book would sit on it right beside a collection of Ansel Adams photographs.

Freakonomics by Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner – As if the title of this book isn’t gripping enough the authors go and subtitle it with ‘a rogue economist explores the hidden side of everything.’ This dazzling New York Times bestseller works from the premise that the world is knowable and, for the curious explorer, penetrable. If the right questions are asked we may just be surprised by how intriguing and unorthodox it actually is. Fascinating!!

Last thing.
Animals. are. everywhere. in. the. desert. Rabbits are cute and should be cared for at all costs. We had a coy-dog trample through our campsite, which, if you are most likely a Canadian reader of this blog, you would understand to be a coyote. I bet they eat rabbits. If it is large and hairy with big scary teeth and eight legs you most likely encountered a tarantula. I bet they eat rabbits. If you hear the playful sound of a rattle in your tent and you’re not baby sitting you should probably leave quickly – you may have just snuggled up to one of three species of rattlesnake. I bet they eat rabbits too. There are lizards….thousands……and thousands of lizards. If you try catch them their tails fall off. We watched them mate and surmised that it wasn’t love. Judging by the sheer volume of lizards I would imagine them to be about as regular as rabbits. Did I mention the desert tortoise? Their pure smug ‘tortoise and the hair’ snobbery must be the largest antagonism a rabbit faces. The plight of the desert rabbit and jack-rabbit is sadly significant...the whole ecosystem seems to circle around them. Poor little guys.

It’s good to be back!! New (and shorter!) stuff coming soon…


Boomer said...

If you were anymore articulate and well written I might call you Prof. English. Sounds likes you guys had an amazing trip. Amy and I definitly missed you at the retreat. I was thinking about reading Freakanomics, but now I can't decide between that and What Canadians Think...Thats of course after I finish the other two that are on deck. Anyway talk to ya soon dude. Tell Candace I "surp" (syrup for the rest of us) It came up @ Stillwood. Peace.

Anonymous said...


did you make it to Hueco? and then send esperanza?

sounds like a killer time.

Jeremy Postal said...

Hueco? No. Someday I'd like to go down there for a month or so....
We ended up spending ten days in Bishop playing around the Happy boulders and another week in Joshua Tree tearing our fingertips apart on the mega-sharp and ancient granite. I've never seen so much rock in my life!! Crazy!

You know what we did find though? We stumbled into this cave under a boulder and found hundreds of ancient indian art >> pretty cool stuff!

Hey Cody - are you gonna come out this summer?